GUEST COLUMN: Sarnia a giving, caring community

Nadine Wark

Having resided in Sarnia-Lambton all my life, I have observed just what a community and its people are all about.

I never stop to marvel at the sheer number of non-profit organizations, numerous businesses and even ordinary every-day people who reach out to help wherever and whenever needed.  The service clubs do not have the membership they once had, which may be a sign of the times.  Young adults who would be most welcome to step in and join are busy, so it would seem, with a never-ending choice of how to spend their time and energies in today’s world.  Fortunately, Sarnia has a nucleus of talented, creative, helpful citizens who get involved.

It is so inspiring to see Noel’s Gift continue to grow over the past couple of years after this young lady’s untimely passing.  Just one person’s idea to honour a friend made it all happen, and just like a stone makes a ripple effect in a pond, the charitable donations have been widespread across Sarnia-Lambton.

As a result, Sarnia students are supported in a number of ways with necessities like school supplies, lunches, snacks, clothing and footwear as well as health-related needs. The Inn of the Good Shepherd has its many volunteers who work hard all year and not just at Christmas, to feed the less fortunate.  Even our local schools have the spirit of giving with their year-round fundraisers for good causes including food and can drives for the Inn.

Our local newspapers continually feature benefits held for those in need, whether it be someone with a terminal illness affecting family as they travel out of town for treatment; also families with other needs, such as losing their possessions in a fire.

Sarnia’s local musicians do not hesitate to show up and entertain for hours for causes such as these. It is important to note that many times, those who were helped make it a point to ‘pay it forward’ and help someone else in need; once again.

Then there are on-going fundraisers/walks/biking for Cancer, MS, Heart & Stroke, etc. There are always excellent turnouts for these events, and many generous donors do their part to help toward these important causes.

Habit for Humanity is another way our community reaches out to the less fortunate, building and providing homes for families who would never be able to afford a home of their own.  Tireless, dedicated workers show up, representing all trades and in no time, a new home is ready for a deserving family.

Many other individuals and groups operate on a day-to-day basis helping our community be one of the best!  Citizens of Sarnia can be proud!

Nadine Wark is a freelance writer who resides in Sarnia