Why do people give? And why to United Way? Whether they give in large or small amounts, we’ve spoken with some of our donors and asked them why. In this series of posts, we’ll share with you what they told us.
Here is what Hal and Donna Baldwin had to say.
“I grew up on a Saskatchewan farm,” says Donna. “An early memory of community giving is of a farmer in our neighbourhood who had become ill and was unable to harvest his crop. Eight farm neighbours drove their combines onto his land and took off his entire crop in one day.
The warmth of that generosity of spirit is not soon forgotten.”
To grow up during the time of the phone party line meant realizing at a young age that when a continuous ring sounded in our homes it meant a community emergency. It might be someone’s barn on fire or a flood in which children had been swept away.
No matter the emergency the message was “you are needed” and an entire community was activated.
Hal grew up in a town of 150. His parents gave regularly to their local church explaining that in so doing they were contributing to their community since the church was the centre of the community and the place where those in need could find support.
“Donna and I support many community organizations.”
A community needs more than what any one individual needs, and by giving to several organizations that don’t necessarily have a connection or direct benefit to them, the Baldwins feel that they are supporting a healthier, stronger community.
While Hal and Donna see many of the problems in their community, they also know that the best solutions are complicated.
“We know that we have serious poverty concerns in our community, and to give to the United Way is our way of finding positive solutions to assist those in need.”
When seeing those who are less fortunate Hal and Donna are reminded that but for the generosity of others, they might very well have found themselves in similar need. Choosing to donate is a way to “pay forward” the help that they received along the way.
“Our biggest hope for our community is to see our way through the pandemic, but also to finally get some kind of achievable plan so that all who call this community home might live with dignity.”