The Importance of Community

16 August / 2013
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There is absolutely no doubt that we, as a society, are busier and more stressed than ever. Technology, often our friend, becomes our foe when we can’t shut down or turn off, even overnight. We have our daily routines, kids have their routines, and we are all bombarded by an overload of information and hundreds of tweets per minute. Yet, with work, school, activities, responsibilities, we often forget about the importance of community – that sense of belonging to some place, some where.

My husband and I do not have children. We sat down years ago and determined that with this extra time, we needed to do something with it. While others are raising families, we needed to focus our extra time to making sure the community they are growing up in, and we are living in, is the best it can be. We’ve been in our community of Aurora, Ohio for fourteen years. And in that time, we’ve really tried to donate our time and resources to making Aurora the best place to belong. Because it is the best place. And by paying some time and attention to Aurora, here and there through city committees, civic groups and church, we’ve met some really amazing people.

My husband and I recently received a tremendous honor, we were nominated by members of our community, and selected by the City of Aurora, to be this year’s Grand Marshals in our town July 4th parade. In addition to being Grand Marshals, we each received a Key to the City by our Mayor Jim Fisher.

At first, we were shocked and stunned, as we know, without a doubt, there are many more individuals, couples and families who do so much more for Aurora and have been doing it longer. The recognition of our efforts was so thoughtful, so appreciated, we realized that we must pay this act of kindness forward and make sure that those who have been sharing their time and talents would be recognized too. I hope our Parks & Rec department is prepared for the heaping number of Grand Marshal nominations coming from Brady and Julie Krebs next year.

I write this post, not just to tell our story, but to share with you that every effort, every bit of time, is so important to our communities, our schools and the lives, with which we share this earth. Take a moment to become part of something bigger than yourself and you will see immediate rewards. There are a number of organizations, with local chapters, that could use your time and talent. Check out a Rotary International chapter near you. This amazing group of 37,000 chapters and hundreds of thousands of people worldwide, has almost eliminated polio from this planet. And Rotary does so much more – international and local projects benefiting people everywhere – www.rotary.org

If time is just not possible, do consider donating money or resources to non-profit groups. These gifts do go a long way. An international organization I personally volunteer and support is Girls for the World – www.girlsfortheworld.org  Founder, Karen Hanson, helps young girls here in the US and around the world, through a series of arts and leadership-based workshops, to find their voice, to understand that they can be an agent of positive change in their communities. $150 goes a long way, as it sends one girl to a week-long workshop, covering all her expenses, food, travel, lodging, everything. Girls with a voice stay in school, can challenge the desire for her parents to marry her early, and by recognizing her talents, micro-finance efforts flourish with new female-owned businesses throughout the world.

Please get involved and if you are already, tell others about your involvement and what you do. Share your experiences. Good does spread. Let’s keep the good driving forward to strengthen our lives and our communities.

– Julie Krebs
President + Principal Brand Advisor

 

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