March 8, 2022 Message to the Membership
Posted on March 8, 2022 in Message to the Membership
Despite all our differences, which have become particularly glaring over the past two years, Saskatchewan is full of wonderful people. Indeed, it truly does not matter which side of whatever debate, spectrum, ideology, etc., you/they may fall on because when you get right down to it, we are blessed with wonderful neighbours, families and friends.
It seems like we’re reminded of this at some of our most challenging times, such as a winter snowstorm or a summer flood, but there’s an element of goodness that underlies everything we Saskatchewanians do.
In the old days, our ancestors would gather to raise barns for their neighbours. In the new days (ie: now), we push buttons on our smartphones. A little bit of apples and oranges going on there, but the end result comes in the form of helping each other out.
The latest examples come from our province’s response to two fundraising campaigns, which happened to fall within days of each other last week.
First up was the Saskatchewan Day of Caring, which you may recall having read about here in this space in the last message I wrote. It was put on by Rawlco Radio, and in a 12-hour period, raised well more than $1 million to support humanitarian aid in Ukraine.
Then just a couple of days later, Kinsmen Telemiracle began its annual fundraising telethon across the province, where it set a record amount of more than $8 million raised. This money is allocated for all of the good work that the Kinsmen do for people living with physical, intellectual or medical challenges. In my view, it’s as ‘Saskatchewan’ as Saskatchewan gets.
If only we could harness all of that goodness into our everyday interaction with each other. Admittedly, most physical interactions are cordial and polite, but when we get behind the anonymity of a keyboard, suddenly all bets are off.
But today’s topic is about positivity and the goodness we innately have. And again, I think it dates back to those barn-raising days of yesteryear. When European settlers arrived here, they had little support aside from one another.
Communities were generally 8-10 miles apart along the rail lines because that’s how far a settler could typically make it, within a day of course, for their goods or services. Farms popped up much more densely, a mile or two apart, and sometimes even within a mile, and your neighbours became your support system, as well as your social circle.
The spirit of togetherness and helping one another out likely came out of necessity as much as it did for the values of goodness and benevolence. But whether or not this was the case doesn’t really matter, because the by-product has been just that – goodness, community-building, togetherness and we-got-your-back-edness (yes, I know it’s not a word, but in the spirit of working together and helping one another out, I’m sure you’ll cut me a break!).
We see further examples of this in today’s legislature, where – as we all well know – there’s little the government and opposition parties find in common. But on the topic of Ukrainian refugees and Saskatchewan doing all it can to place as many Ukrainians as want to come here, the two parties stood in unison to support this endeavour, should it come to pass.
I don’t know about you, but that gives me hope for our province. That gives me hope for our future. Because when it comes to human decency and doing the right thing, we can pull together. We’ve proven it time and again, and will continue to do this in the future.
I find this especially refreshing given the two years of crap we’ve all been through. But, because we’re keeping it positive, we’re not going to dwell on the crap… we’re only looking forward. And all indications appear that when it comes to COVID, the worst is behind us and we’re moving towards more normalcy.
Take a bow Saskatchewan, or better yet, give your neighbour a pat on the back. They likely deserve it.
Until next time, be safe, be smart, be considerate, be well, but most of all, be kind.