Commentary, In the community

Letters: Poverty series is a call to action

By Lucy Hutchens, Vale

To the Editor:

Congratulations on a critical piece of journalism (Children in Poverty – a 5-part series). Your editorial indicated it was time for all of us to act – and what would one do to help?

It is time to think outside the box, because the procedures and efforts for the past many years are not working.  Therefore, I volunteer to provide crisis counseling for anyone with a mental health emergency and be available for support while they wait a month or more for whatever is available. I am highly experienced and despite the fact that I am older than the president, what I could provide in a crisis interim is better than nothing.

I have the advantage of the social service history in this county since 1962.  I know what was tried and I know what worked and did not work.  Most efforts that worked had a volunteer element and teamwork that involved all the helping agencies. The current crop of helpers need that history and the agencies cannot compete for power and for what little money is available.

I would be happy to discuss these ideas with anyone who is open to creating a caring circle of concern and love for the “throwaway” kids. Crisis has to mean IMMEDIATE ACTION since non-supportive waiting reinforces their lack of worth.

Lucy Hutchens is a retired protective services and trauma counselor and retired Oregon licensed professional counselor.

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