As we progress towards a new year and a new decade it is a good time to reflect on what we can anticipate in the next year. Many of us make New Year’s resolutions and set some goals for the coming year.
It does not take a great deal of perceptive ability to recognize how polarized we are as a nation.
We have focused on a narrow set of rather negative political agendas while we have enjoyed a very strong economic position in the world economy. My personal belief is that with the kind of prosperity we are experiencing comes a great deal of responsibility. It is to me a stewardship that we should share as a nation.
As we consider some significant responsibilities in this next year I focus on some of the burgeoning social issues that we are facing in our children and their families. Issues like opioid addiction, alcoholism, violence, mental health struggles including suicide, depression and anxiety are still raging in our communities. We are making very slow progress in providing support and programs for these complex issues. There is still major profit being made in child pornography and sex trafficking. We still imprison more individuals than any country in the world. Some of our systems of care are still very broken and have very few resources to provide the social services that our families need. The financial reality is that these issues cost us billions of dollars in lost wages and the growing expenses. That doesn’t include the added emotional and relational devastation to our families who are struggling with life and death realities. I could describe a long list of specific issues that we see at Lakeside as we work with over 3600 students per year.
We easily can look to a new decade with the typical goals and issues that we will strive to achieve. There is nothing wrong with many of those goals. However, let us not forget the largest contributor to the future of our country and our world! That is our children! I hope that we will work more diligently in systems changes and funding to help those children who have been impacted by trauma and some of the issues that I have mentioned. I truly believe that our future will depend on what we do in this next decade to mitigate some of these issues.
At Lakeside we are on the forefront of helping students and families in our region and throughout the country. We will continue to be active in helping those who are experiencing some extremely difficult life issues.
All of us should share the stewardship of caring for our children, supporting our families, improving our schools and creating safety in our communities. I think the next decade could be one of significant growth and change that can prevent these traumas and provide help, support and healing for those who are struggling with such life devastating problems. We all should be able to agree that this is a worthy and valuable endeavor.
I wish you and your family a happy and safe New Year’s celebration. I anticipate many new opportunities to utilize Lakeside Connect to raise awareness with more ways to help our children, families and communities. Thank you for reading Lakeside Connect. We appreciate your support and comments. Happy New Year to you all!