Editorial: Taking a cue from Cassopolis

Published 7:48 pm Wednesday, July 18, 2012

In the span of just over a month, the Village of Cassopolis and its school system have turned what seemed like an unfortunate situation for students and parents into an example of doing everything possible to help others.

During a June 11 board of education meeting, board members voted to institute an athletic fee that would require student athletes (or their parents) to pay $100 to play sports for the academic year. The athletic department’s $18,000 deficit caused the need for the fee, but it was one resident, Robert Saxton, that first stepped up. After donating $9,000 Monday, other local businesses and individuals stepped up to the plate, wiping out the department’s deficit and eliminating the fee.

We as a community, county and region should take a cue from this example and strive to donate, volunteer and give whatever we can to achieve what we want for our citizens and ourselves.

Many programs, businesses and events in southwest Michigan have met the economic struggle that families are facing. While it is uncommon for individuals and business owners to have thousands of dollars available to donate spontaneously, the art of giving spans much further.

Volunteering time, resources and expertise to programs that may be struggling to pay for such services can be the difference between its existence and demise. A small monetary donation to school- and community-related departments operates the same way; if we as a community want something to stay around or continue the work it accomplishes, we must work together to help achieve that goal.

This type of attitude can be applied to non-profit organizations, festivals, summer concert series and school events. If we want to keep them, we have to find a way to do so.

This editorial represents the views of the editorial board.