Editor’s note: Katie Ryan-Anderson, wrote a guest blog for momaha.
The botched Green Bay Packers vs. Seattle Seahawks football call last week gave me a little perspective. Surely, you’ve heard about it by now: in the last play of the Sept. 24 matchup, the Seahawks pulled out a 14-12 win over the Packers on a disputed 24-yard touchdown pass.
It’s a big deal to football fanatics because it cost the Green Bay Packers a win and it was a catalyst for the National Football League and referees to a reach a negotiations agreement.
The outrage reminds me of a conversation circa six years ago. Some classmates were protesting the most recent Facebook format update (the integration of the first news feed, remember that hot potato?) when a fellow student interrupted: Seriously, she said, if we only got this upset every time a a child was sold into slavery, we could really make some change in this world.
Right on she remains.
The Green Bay Packers call-troversy consumed our Facebook news feeds (the one we doth protested) that Monday night and Tuesday too. It’s devoured our thoughts, our news coverage and our conversations all week.
Seriously, if we only got this upset when something really upsetting happens.
So let’s get really ticked.
Every day, families in the Omaha area face financial struggles that put them at risk of losing their homes, their security and their peace of mind. Each case is different. That’s why the Omaha Word-Herald’s Goodfellow’s program is such a blessing to the Greater Omaha area.
Goodfellows began helping our neighbors clear back to the late 1800′s. The charity’s focus has changed over the years, but since 1993, Goodfellows has provided year-round emergency funds to families with one-time, urgent needs that cannot be met by any other public or private assistance. Many times, those needs include making a rent payment on time, or affording the utility bill. This can happen to any of us. Unemployment or a medical emergency can deplete a savings account in a hurry. Goodfellows also helps with holiday meal assistance and clothing for school children.
What I like most about Goodfellows is the World-Herald absorbs all administrative costs. That’s rare. And it means 100 percent of donations go to those in need.
Goodfellows’ annual appeal, like many nonprofit organizations, begins around Thanksgiving and ends on Christmas. But let’s get started early, before our focus shifts to gift giving and maxed-out credit cards.
If you’re like me and don’t live in Omaha, consider donating time or funds to your local Salvation Army or American Red Cross: two responsible and accountable organizations that serve many communities locally and abroad. They aid not just the poor, but also victims of house fires and natural disasters.
Monday Night Football can upset us, and that’s OK. Missed calls are annoying, but missed rental payments and homeless children are outrageous. Let’s focus that energy elsewhere: give to Goodfellows or find a your local Salvation Army or American Red Cross.
Katie Ryan-Anderson lives and works in North Dakota with her husband, son and second baby due in December. She grew up in Omaha where she attended high school and college.
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