In so many ways 2022 has been a sad and heart breaking year. For me it has been the war in Ukraine as I hear of the life changing events that so many there have incurred. Picture yourself sitting and reading a book, having just had a good meal with family and working to get ready for bed. Your house is warm and the stress of life is manageable. Yet, in a split second a Russian missile explodes on impact on your neighborhood or apartment building sending your possessions flying everywhere. Your first thought is your family and their safety. You locate each other and huddle for a plan as to what to do next. There may be smoke, fire, exterior walls gone exposing the outdoors.
Dear reader, you can make up your own scene and not be far wrong as to scenes faced by Ukrainians today. Think about it. What can be done to stop the carnage? In the US we have the greatest military on earth and it would only take minutes for our first responders and our protectors to pounce on the problem and most importantly to stop the breach if not having prevented it to start with. But when you not only don’t have the resources or the capability to stop the barrage it becomes terribly depressing to hear no one is coming to help. In the U.S. help does come, help for you and your family comes. In Ukraine the family not far from you was not so lucky. The help that arrives is of no use. The damage is done and all is lost. In our modern world, how is it that circumstances like this are allowed to happen. Think about it. What do you feel about those who willfully and intentionally decide to kill families?
Recently, in Colorado Springs, a citizen was rewarded and decorated for subduing a person who willfully and intentionally decided to kill. There will always be individuals who have lost their mind or been brainwashed into thinking that killing another human is the right thing to do. The world is doing all it can to reach those folks and give them reasons not to kill. But it is a whole other story when one person cans convenience hundreds to kill thousands for no good reason. Military’s should be strictly for defense. They should not be used to force an idea onto another society, especially a peaceful society that has no skin in the game. That family in the area that was bombed in Ukraine had no skin in the game. They just wanted to work hard and sustain themselves. The family that was killed had the same agenda. But, it took just one person to convince hundreds that they should kill that family and many others. Destroy their ability to survive. Why?
Let’s look at your neighborhood and see all those who come and go without any skin in the game. They just want to work hard and sustain themselves. The threats are few and the safety great. If a threat arises citizens are willing to jump in and help. We are a civilized society living in a country whose residents want to just work hard and survive. Mother Nature may be our greatest enemy. But when necessary we take down the danger together as a group. We give money to restore lost resources. We volunteer to restore food & shelter. So if you have taken the time to read this far you are a special and caring person. You understand that you can manage only what you can manage, but the flip side is you can support others to manage circumstances beyond your control. While you are picturing the sadness of the Ukrainian population please know that there are poor people that are hurting, through no fault of their own, in our community. There are hundreds of stories and plenty of examples of folks just trying to work hard and sustain themselves. One quick example:
In KCK, Charles has been living in a home he acquired by working hard. He has lived in it for years but over the course of time little things that need to be repaired or maintained began to add up. A short in the electrical knocks out a circuit and to hire an electrician is beyond his ability pay. He lives without that circuit and compensates with extension cords or affordable options, some not always safe. As the years go by the cost of maintaining the house and catching up on all that goes wrong becomes overwhelming. The foundation deteriorates and the floor partially collapses. The sconce lights on the wall come loose and no longer work due to loose wires. And the more that goes wrong the cost to catch up gets harder to save. Then the biggest fear happens and a brain tumor is discovered. Surgery will help Charles live and friends and family help all they can while he recovers. But in the end the bills drain all resources that were being saved to fix floors and electrical. The options to maintain his biggest asset are narrowing. If he can get a little help to keep him safe and alive then he has a chance to slowly work on restoring the very basics of the home and not have to live off the government and your tax dollar.
Society has created support systems to help Charles. Generous families dedicate money through grants and gifts. But in all cases it requires contributions from individuals to perpetuate the support. For HPLA Charities it is the Charles of the community which are the folks we find or they find us. We are a small overworked and under staffed home repair charity. We have no grants or funds except for your donations. Trained technicians are illusive and usually require some compensation, but we are blessed by some that don’t charge at all. Today skilled and licensed individuals need some compensation and we are forced to pay it. We work for those clients that society has considered expendable. We do this without any paid staff. All the work necessary to operate the business is done by volunteers who sacrifice thousands of dollars in free labor to manage the mission. If you are receiving this letter it is because you have contributed in some way to our existence. What we need is to reload the accounts to buy building materials to do what we do in 2023.
We do electrical, plumbing, carpentry and paint. No! Donations are not used for anything else. Yes, we offer drinks and snacks to the volunteers while they work, but most take care of themselves. Your contributions go directly to help people in need. We help the elderly, the handicapped, the veteran, the folks that are living out their last years and want to live them out in their own home.
Finally, we need caring professionals to serve on our board and help to get grant money for what we do or raise funds for us. You will not be sorry. For now if you would give a one-time gift or as many of you do send us a monthly gift, our gratitude and prayers for your continued good health and blessing will go out every day.
You can do this securely via our website. Donations are collected and managed by PayPal. So please go to www.HPLACharities.org/donate and donate. God Bless You.
Robert Flores Chairman
Habitaciones Para Latinos Association
aka HPLA Charities of Kansas City