Waynedale Political Commentaries


When I was a child, I associated the Labor Day Holiday with the start of the Fall school session, because it always began the Wednesday after Labor Day. Now the return begins before Labor Day for most schools. When heading to work in the early morning hours, I see children carrying their book bags or back packs, and heading to their bus stops. Some bags appear to be too heavy or too large for the children.

On one particular day I saw my 5 year old nephew after he attended a day of pre-kindergarten. He was in a playful mood and full of energy. He was running around outside having fun, as though the day had just begun. Late in the evening I saw my niece Kaylah returning home from a day of school activities. She was not quite as energetic as Ben had appeared.

Kaylah is a typical eighth grade student. After completing her school day, she participated in volleyball practice. She had a back pack resting on her shoulder that sparked my curiosity. I measured it and discovered it was 18 inches high and 15 inches wide. It seemed huge! I picked up her back pack to look inside and was surprised to find out how heavy it was. I pulled out an Algebra book that weighed a few pounds; then I pulled out a Science book that weighed a few pounds. There were the heavy books, a binder, several writing tablets, and a pen and pencil case in the back pack. The pen and pencil case had pens, pencils, and of course lip gloss in it. It seemed appropriately decorated for someone Kaylah’s age. She appeared to be tired. She came inside and started doing her homework for the day. I flipped through my niece’s books. In her Science and Technology book there was a section on George Archibald dancing with captive cranes. It was a wonderful story describing how he did the courtship dance to help the cranes with their reproduction issues. After the story, there was a math activity section which focused on transporting cranes from Madison, Wisconsin to Orlando, Florida. It also included a section about miniature horses being used as guides; helping to guide people through streets, crowds, and on escalators. These are such interesting articles for the students. The Algebra 1 book had sections on exponents and order of operations; the distributive property; absolute value equations and inequalities; probability of compound events; counting methods and permutations. All of the studying the students do will help to prepare them for a bright future. You can compare Kaylah’s day to a typical adult’s day. Some adults go to work, take time to work out at the gym or park, and then go home and prepare for the next day’s activities. Some have many more things to do during the day, such as dropping off and picking up children, cooking and cleaning, and helping their children with homework. Regardless of our duties, most of us want to feel a sense of accomplishment when thinking about our children.

I believe it’s hard for some of our clients to feel that sense of accomplishment when they are unable to meet their basic needs. At the Wayne Township Trustee Office, we encourage individuals to move from “Assistance to independence”. We provide assistance with meeting their basic needs and helping them secure employment.

I saw CEO and Senior Pastor of the Rescue Mission, Donovan Coley, on the television program “INsight”. The goals of the Rescue Mission seem to be somewhat similar to ours in that both organizations focus on a holistic approach when providing assistance. Reverend Coley spoke about getting those in need on a course that changes their lives. He explained that in the past, individuals have come to the Rescue Mission to receive food or emergency shelter, but now the Rescue Mission stands for transformation and “Real change not spare change”. He said we need to focus on human development. He encourages us to see a person as a real individual who needs real resources; saying they need to experience real change. He says we should provide food and then point individuals to real resources in the community. Reverend Coley says there are resource guides available upon request on the Rescue Mission website, www.therescuemission.net/.

Richard A. Stevenson, Sr.
Wayne Township Trustee

Richard A. Stevenson - Wayne Township Trustee

Wayne Township Trustee Rick Stevenson was elected Trustee in November of 2006 and took office in January of 2007. He is very passionate about helping those in need and considers it a privilege to be in a position to be able to help. > Read Full Biography > More Articles Written By This Writer