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Haiti relief a sign of our charity

To see the people of a community come together to help their fellow residents is touching, but to see them come together to help the citizens of a country over 1,000 miles away is much more astounding.
If you have been paying attention to world news, you probably know that the earthquake that devastated Haiti two and a half weeks ago has brought out both the best and the worst in humanity.

Assuredly, though, the worst of humanity has by far been outdone by the best.

From pole to pole, the world has shown a helping hand to the beleaguered nation. You don’t have to watch CNN to know Ennis has contributed to the effort of helping Haitians return to somewhat normal lives.

Wednesday evening at First United Methodist Church, the missions committee and other volunteers put together emergency medical kits for the United Methodist Committee On Relief. UMCOR is on the ground right now in Haiti, distributing the kits.

Thanks to a child’s request, Ennis ISD’s Travis Elementary School has joined the effort to help FUMC.

The complexity and level of understanding of a child’s mind is often underestimated. We can sometimes assume that young children don’t have grasp on the world beyond what they can see for themselves. Can a child even fathom the effects of a large-scale disaster so many miles away?

At Travis Elementary, one second-grader could. Elizabeth Wadsworth voiced her concern to her teacher, Diana Culpepper.

This small act turned into a school-wide effort, and for the last week, Travis has collected items to give FUMC Ennis, which the church will use to make the medical kits.

Something about the tragedy struck a nerve in Elizabeth.

She didn’t know exactly what to do on her own, but she did know she wanted to help. There are probably several children in Ennis with the same reaction.

With the example set by the rest of the community, it is natural for even the youngest residents of Ennis to recognize an opportunity to help.

In Ennis this year, the community came together to support both the fundraising campaigns of the Greater Ennis United Way and the Feed the Children project. Both were successful.

We’ve done a great job of taking care of our own community, and it is expected that a community that does so much to take care of its own can step up when the largest natural disaster in years hits one of our country’s poorest neighbors.

A disaster like Haiti’s is incomprehensible. It is difficult to imagine losing half your family, your home and most of your possessions all in one day.

But with the entire world rallying around this country that is plagued by disaster, Haitians can still cling to one thing — hope.
Right now, hope is the greatest asset Haiti has.

The “Hope for Haiti” telethon raised more than $60 million. Perhaps the most encouraging bit of news to come out of Haiti since the disaster is the rescue of a 16-year-old girl on Wednesday after 15 days trapped beneath rubble at her home near a university.

She was dehydrated, hungry and barely alive, but she is now in stable condition.

Hope is thriving in Haiti, and with hope comes so many possibilities. Efforts from people all around the world, including those from Ennis, are helping to fuel that hope.

The outpouring of support reminds us that, even as a small city, we aren’t closed off from the world.

We can have a positive effect on the lives of people in Haiti — and that makes the world seem a little smaller.

Liz Crawford is a staff writer at the Ennis Daily News, and covers education and Ellis County government. She can be reached at liz@ennisdailynews.com.

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Posted by on Jan 29 2010. Filed under Editorials. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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