Giving back on holidays

Madison Sondermeyer, Out and About

This year is coming to a quick and final end. Many people would agree overall that this was a strange year. Others will say differently, but either way do not give up on this year just yet. Try to find ways, big or small, to give back to the Earth.
I strongly encourage you to come up with ideas as a whole and make them happen this spring. We need to come together to save the Earth. We do not have much time before we lose the Earth. Stop denying it and accept that it is a problem we need to fix.
We have nothing to lose now, so why not just try?
I suggest making petitions, participating in town clean ups, and coming up with convenient ways of getting rid of trash. Do not forget the old saying: reduce, reuse, and recycle. You can also cut down on what you throw away, volunteer for cleanups in your community, conserve water, choose sustainable goods, shop wisely, use long-lasting light bulbs, and plant trees.
Earth is not the only thing struggling-people are, too. With the holidays around the corner, along with the cold weather, this is the perfect time to find ways to contribute to families in need. You always hear the same rhetoric about helping people around the holidays, but I know you still haven’t done anything about it. Put yourself in their shoes and I am sure that if the situation were switched, you would want someone to help you. Helping families means volunteering at soup kitchens, donating food, as well as participating in clothing drives.
Animals are just as important as the Earth and humans. They help with stress, they also provide us with necessities we need to live properly. Consider the animal shelters in New Jersey or even worldwide that are in need and could use the help. Whether it is adopting or fostering an animal or providing food, basic supplies, etc. to an animal shelter, it all can make a great difference to an animal in need.
For any of these things you can volunteer in or out of our community/town to help out and make a difference. For example, you can volunteer at the West Milford Animal Shelter, the West Milford Family Pump Track, and Hands In 4 Youth – Home of Vacamas Camps. You could even become a volunteer firefighter. For soup kitchens, there are West Milford Presbyterian Church, The Vreeland Store, St. Joseph’s Church, and Association For Special Children. For clothing donation options there are big donation bins at Fire halls or sometimes Churches and you can donate to the Salvation Army.
Making a difference in this town’s appearance also is not hard and it does not take much. You have to try to be dedicated. Simple things like fundraisers can help with fixing up the town buildings, including the schools. Fixing things big or small for example things as big as their appearances like the walls should be updated, the floor should be one solid color, also on the outside it should come off more inviting and less intimidating this can be as little as adding more color like flowers. For the school, one could help keep the school organized and create easier jobs for our hardworking custodians by, picking up your trash, don’t leave lunch tables a mess, or simply greet the custodians and thank them for what they do.
Teachers ideally would get the same storage unit, like a closet, to store equipment. All the student desks in that classroom should match and there shouldn’t be any broken ones.
These are small changes that can make a big difference. Let’s all try harder.