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In Full . . .

The VILLAGE VIEW

Posted on October 31 2017 at 12:06:05

We often hear people talk about how nice it is to live in our villages and how lucky we all are to do so.

While it is true we are very fortunate to live where and how we do, it is not all down to luck – and many of the facets that make life so pleasant are not here by accident.

They are the result of the past efforts by, usually, volunteers and the current and on-going efforts of similarly community-minded people.

Our parish councillors, for example, do not devote the many hours their roles require for their own benefit (apart from, perhaps, a sense of wellbeing that comes from helping the community in which they live).

They do it to improve the lives for all of the people in the community – and they do it in spite of the brickbats occasionally lobbed in their direction for caring enough to take decisions that not all may agree with.

The people who get involved with residents’ associations, Neighbourhood Watches, village societies and the like, or who volunteer to keep footpaths clear or to build stiles and erect waymarker signs, don’t put in all the effort this involves just for their own pleasure; they do it for the benefit of all of us – all of you.

The people who are putting in so many hours preparing Neighbourhood Plans, which should help to protect and improve our communities for many years to come, are doing this purely as volunteers, with nothing to gain except the knowledge that they have helped to play their part in making these villages of ours even better places to live.

The Scout and Guide leaders who give up their evenings, weekends and even weeks of their holidays to create an environment and activities that young people will remember and benefit from for the rest of their lives aren’t doing this for their own benefit or just for their own children.

They are doing it to improve the lives of everyone’s children.

This far-from-exhaustive list of people we should all be thanking was prompted by reading about an appeal for help by The Lounge, a project run almost entirely by volunteers and which continues to bring benefits to our young people while also providing a hub for other villagers to meet.

The Lounge isn’t provided by the State as cheap, after-school childcare; it is run by people who live in the parish, people who volunteer their time and energy for the benefit of young people, and not just their own – although the obvious starting point for volunteers might be the parents of the children who benefit.

That isn’t always possible, of course, and so if there is anyone reading this who feels inspired to put something back into their community, click here – or help out with one of the other groups or organisations featured on many of our other pages.


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