EDITORIAL: Help needed in tough times

NANAIMO – More and more people are suffering in Nanaimo.

The economic crunch that enveloped the world in 2008 is far from a thing of the past.

Despite claims by politicians that Canada – as well as B.C. – has weathered the storm better than other countries and provinces, one just has to look a little less globally and little more locally to see it’s not true.

More and more people are suffering in Nanaimo. Food banks are seeing an increase in the number of children, seniors and families registering for their services.

Even those with jobs are not immune to the tough times we are experiencing. The working poor often has to decide on a roof over their head or food on the table. Others might have to forego any semblance of Christmas, including gifts for children, so that rent or medical bills get paid.

With this increasing demand on Loaves and Fishes Community Food Bank and the Salvation Army which help the less-fortunate, comes a demand on other organizations fundraising cash, food and toys for those non-profit providers.

And that demand can only be filled by the generosity of the public. The ‘fortunate’ who are being tugged in every direction with requests to give, and then give more.

For it’s not just Hamperville or the Great Nanaimo Toy Drive that needs help. Haven and Hospice societies, the United Way, even Nanaimo SPCA have campaigns underway – all to help others.

And while times are more than tough, thankfully Nanaimo has a history of pulling together and coming through for those in need.

There’s still time to make a difference and give those who face the possibility of a bleak holiday season a little Christmas cheer.

And even if there is only a little to give, it doesn’t matter. Because every little bit counts.