Sheriff’s Corner: Toys for Tots, Red Kettle campaign show community cares
As we get closer to the Christmas season, most people’s thoughts are occupied with preparations for family gatherings and last-minute shopping ideas.
For some, however, their minds are on recent life-changing events which may have put them in dire financial times. They may be sitting down at their tables deciding whether to pay the heating bill or the mortgage payment. They may be choosing between gas in the car or supper.
Some parents are listening to their children’s wish lists knowing full well they will not be able to gather the resources to make their children’s wishes come true. It is for these families that so many in our community reach beyond their own needs and wants and provide much-needed donations and gifts during the holiday season.
This Saturday, we will have our Kewaunee County Toys for Tots distribution event as we have for the past two decades. And, as we have been tracking the preregistrations for this program, it is concerning that we have seen an increase in the number of families that we will be assisting.
The good news is that we will be able to meet those needs as the many boxes around the county have been filling up. I have even had to pick up toys early as the boxes have been overflowing. Thank you to all who have donated and to those who will be assisting with the distribution.
Another program which assists our neighbors in need throughout the year is our Salvation Army Red Kettle Campaign. As a voucher writer for the Salvation Army, I can attest to the need for these resources and the impact that it has at critical moments in people’s lives.
This year’s campaign is also coming to an end soon, the last day of bell ringing being Christmas Eve. Thank you to all who have taken time out of their busy lives to ring bells and to those who stopped for a moment to drop a donation into the kettles. I have no doubt this year’s campaign will be just as successful as year’s past.
I recently spoke to a group of students on this very issue and got to thinking, why does all of this matter in the scope of being sheriff?
I do believe that programs like this, as well as the efforts of so many charitable organizations, makes for a safer community, and here’s why.
Most crimes are committed for two reasons: desperation and Isolation.
I have seen many good people make poor choices because they felt they had few to no options. If we can provide assistance at critical moments, maybe that assistance is the difference between that person or a member of his or her family doing right or doing wrong.
The second factor, isolation, has to do with our accountability to each other.
If, through our giving, we show that we do in fact care and that we take time to help one another, it builds a stronger sense of community. It is my firm belief that this stronger sense of community may in fact make a difference when an individual is contemplating a criminal act against another.
This is just my optimistic view and you can accept it or disregard it, but I do believe that we can start to change the world by what we do here in our communities.
Be safe and take care!
Matt Joski is Kewaunee County Sheriff.
This article originally appeared on Green Bay Press-Gazette: Sheriff's Corner: Toys for Tots, Red Kettle campaign show community cares