VANGUARD EDITORIAL: Explore ways to give help

Fred Hatfield
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Every year local groups and organizations make their pitch to the various elected councils in Yarmouth County.


They request money to help them carry out the work they do in the community.

Councils try to spread the available dollars around, but often some groups don't receive what they’ve requested. They might get part of what they asked for, sometimes a small part.

Those doling out the tax dollars will be quick to say rejection or giving out a portion of what’s requested is not a reflection on the merits of the organization making the requests. There’s only so much money and there are lots of requests for help.

That’s not a new situation, but in these economic down times the need for help is perhaps more apparent.

It’s understandable that organizations call upon the councils for assistance, but tax dollars, of course, don’t come from just those relatively few sitting around council tables. They come from all taxpayers and many of them are represented within the organizations asking for money.

But there might be other ways to get a community involved in raising money for charitable organizations.

In the Halifax area they came up with a project called 100 Men Who Give a Damn.  This involved getting 100 men to each bring a cheque for $100 to a group meeting four times a year. Three randomly selected charities will present during each meeting and one will be selected as the recipient of the money. A minimum of $10,000 in total. Each member’s $400 a year develops into $40,000 for local charities.

Could something similar not take place in our community? Granted, we have a smaller population, but let’s say 50 men and women write a similar-size blank cheque four times a year. Money goes to charities.

No doubt there are other community- supported endeavours around the world helping charities that are certainly worth exploring.

The burden on the shrinking tax base will eventually reach the point around here where the many groups requiring assistance end up getting less and less.

Again, that’s no reflection on their worthiness, just a matter of there being only so many tax dollars to go around.

As the purse strings tighten, communities like ours need to explore other ways of raising money for the organizations that have served their fellow citizens for many years.

They need the help or they wouldn’t be asking for it and we all ought to look into ways in which the burden is lifted somewhat off the taxpayers and others step forward – like the example in Halifax – to bring much needed help to those who help so many others.



Geographic location: Halifax

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