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Samantha Jones

Sam's Notebook

Samantha Jones is associate editor for Carroll County Newspapers. Her email address is CCNNews@cox-internet.com

Foundation of a community

Tuesday, May 7, 2019

We’re pretty lucky to have most of Friday off at Carroll County News. The office closes after lunch, and we get to start our weekends right then and there. That wasn’t the case for me this past Friday, but I’m not complaining. I had the honor of covering Carroll County Community Foundation’s Youth Advisory Council Awards, where local nonprofits and volunteers were recognized for their contribution to our community.

I was overjoyed to spend my Friday night hearing about all the good things happening in Carroll County. There were eight grants given out to nonprofits working with children and youth, funding things like Flint Street Fellowship’s Back Our Kids Program and the Holiday Island Rotary Club’s Imagination Library. These nonprofits feed, educate and encourage the children in our community, and they do it because they want to. They do it because they want to do good.

It was wonderful to hear how the nonprofits will be using the grants. One provides free eye care for students in need. Another offers free breakfast for school children Monday through Friday. There’s so much good happening where we live, so many people determined to help the helpless. And, of course, none of this would be possible without the spirit of volunteerism.

For the first time ever, Carroll County Community Foundation gave out an award for Volunteer of the Year. Well, it was supposed to be one award. But there are many worthy recipients of that award in our community, so it was split into three awards. Doesn’t that tell you all you need to know about Carroll County? We have too many volunteers to name one volunteer of the year. In fact, two of the awards went to local couples who have volunteered their time and money to make our county a better place. Really, we ended up with five volunteers of the year.

The remaining 17 nominees deserve a shout-out, too. These are people who work with local youth, care deeply for the environment and advocate for those who cannot advocate for themselves. To everyone who has volunteered in our county, I want to thank you. You exemplify what it means to be part of a community. What drew me to Carroll County was a job, but that’s not what keeps me here.

Every day, I am astounded at the kindness surrounding us. People in Carroll County want to give. If you look at our community calendar, you’re going to see many events put on by nonprofits. These events benefit everybody. These nonprofits benefit every single one of us, no matter our age or station in life.

Because it feels good to live in a community where people are constantly doing good things. It reminds us of the reason why we are here, and it inspires us to give back, too. Thank you, volunteers of Carroll County. I hope you know you have inspired me and so many others just by doing what comes naturally to you.

You are the foundation of our community, and we’ve got a pretty strong foundation, if you ask me.

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Samantha Jones is associate editor for Carroll County Newspapers. Her email address is Citizen.Editor.Eureka@gmail.com