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“Local Motorcyclists, Firefighters Set to Honor Boy Who Saved Racquet Club Residents”

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This July 28, 2013 article found on the Levittown Now website talks about a boy who saw a need and stepped up to help.  I doubt the boy or his friends thought a lot about any reward they might get, as they knocked on doors to alert residence of the danger they were in, so I feel that this article is a great example of how helping because it’s the right thing to do can have some neat surprises as a result of the effort made.  I doubt this boy and his friends knew every person who they alerted to the fire, I also doubt that they had much on their mind other than trying to make sure people were safe.  I also doubt that the boy and his friends viewed themselves as heroes when they took the action they took.  They saw a need and stepped in and did what they could to help.

I tip my hat to this boy and his friends and hope that others can look at this and realize that helping others is the right thing to do, and that doing it because it feels good should be enough of a reward.  Helping because it puts a spotlight on you and lets you say “hey look at me I did this” or helping for the purpose of getting a tax break and not because you actually care isn’t as impressive to others as when someone helps because it’s the right thing to do without regard for what they will get for their efforts.  The kids in this article could have easily stood around and watched the flames grow, or continued on their way to wherever they were heading, but they realized people were in danger and by simply knocking on doors and alerting people, I’m willing to bet they may have saved at least a few lives that night.

It is my hope that others will look at this and realize that they too can make a difference in someone else’s life, and while it may not be as monumental as alerting people to a fire in their building, it could still make a huge difference in someone’s life.   I don’t have a lot in the way of resources, but for me, I find it to be fun to see what kinds of creative ways I can quietly help others.  I generally help  others when I can, because so many people over the years have helped me at various times in my life and asked for nothing in return, and when I find a way to do something for someone else, I feel like in some sense it is giving me a chance to honor those who helped me by paying it forward.


“Budget Agreement Details at a Glance ” (2012-2013) (and some personal thoughts)

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This article on the PA House Republican Caucus website does not have a date indicating a specific day it was posted, but based on the contents I’m going to assume it was either today or yesterday (June 28, 2012 or June 29, 2012) based on content and when I found it (June 29, 2012).

The article highlights various aspects of the state budget giving a brief summary of some of the hot topic items along with a few others.

While the Human Service block grant was not implemented, there was a decision made to run a pilot program to test the block grant out rather than go statewide right off the back.  Also, General assistance appears to have been eliminated from the budget, but those who have received General Assistance despite losing the cash assistance part of it, should still be able to receive Medical Assistance if I’m understanding things correctly.  I know that there are folks who have waited for a response from Social Security who aren’t able to work, so I hope that if you are reading this and know someone who is on General Assistance, you take a moment to reach out to them, because their lives have probably gone from bad to worse with this change.

I was someone who at one time was on General Assistance, while I went through the process of applying for Social Security, and if it hadn’t been for General Assistance and other programs, I would have been in a situation where I would have had the option of either living on the streets or moving in with family or friends and freeloading off them until I was told I was approved for Social Security.  For me it was a time where I was experiencing some severe mental health issues in the form of a Conversion Disorder that manifested as Blindness, compounded by PTSD, Depression and a lifelong struggle with Anxiety among other things, and I lost my job, my apartment, and was at the mercy of my family and the government when it came to trying to keep from becoming homeless.  I am grateful to those who reached out to me during that time, and hope that there are others who will do the same for folks they may know who are in a similar situation.   Sometimes something as simple as giving someone a ride to the place they need to go to apply for something to possibly help them can mean the world to someone in that situation, because even though that application isn’t a guarantee, it does offer a glimmer of hope that maybe things will improve, and when you are in that place, even a glimmer of hope can mean the world to you.  I lost the majority of my belongings when I lost my apartment, and when someone gave me some pans that they had lying around, it was a huge thing for me, because I knew at that moment that if I could manage to keep a roof over my head I would have a way to cook food.  Someone else helped me fill out paperwork during times when I wasn’t able to see because of the Conversion Disorder, and I can’t thank them enough for that act of kindness, it was something they could have easily told me I had to do it myself, but they saw I had a need for help and they helped me do what I needed to do to meet deadlines for paperwork.

My point in sharing that aspect of my life isn’t to make folks feel sorry for me, but to point out that there are ways that we can help people who will be effected by the elimination of General Assistance, that doesn’t require giving someone money.  I know there are people who are hesitant to give people money, which is why I wanted to point out there are other ways to help the folks who will be affected by the elimination of General Assistance.


  With Christmas arriving in a couple days, I find myself thinking about the idea that there are people who don’t have family they gather with for the holidays.  I recently met someone who when asked if there was anything they wanted for Christmas, responded with, ‘I’m just happy to have a family to celebrate Christmas with’  This is something that is difficult for me to understand, because even though my family has been less then ideal in many ways, we all manage to put our diferences aside and we gather together to celebrate Christmas and other holidays.  Having heard that the person I mentioned before had spent Christmas alone for the past seven years or so, made me realize that I have something that many others don’t have at holiday times.  In a way I feel bad, because I never really thought about people not having anyone to spend Christmas with, and had more or less taken for granted that everyone had someone to share the holidays with.

  I know it’s late now in regards to being able to do much in the way of reaching out to those who will be alone for Christmas, but maybe I can reach out to at least a ew people next year and maybe make their Christmas a little less lonely.

  I think that people being alone for the holidays might explain in part why so many people get depressed or struggle more with mental health issues.  I know there are other reasons that contribute, but I think lonliness is a big factor, since it seems to feed depression.

  I think that if each of us took a look at the people around us, we could all find someone who will be alone for the holidays, so if you could even call them, take some leftovers from your Christmas dinner to them, or even just stop and wish them a happy holiday and ask if there is anything they need, it jst might make a difference in someone’s life this holiday season and many more to come.

Merry Christmas!


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