Carole Brown’s Story: Ordinary People Making a Positive Difference

I have had the good fortune to have a career in nutrition service so I have had opportunity to see people from many “walks of life” give of themselves frequently whether it’s reading to an ill person, taking them to therapy, checking on their family and pets, making sure a child goes home from day care to a safe place, etc..

One of the largest “kitchen table efforts” that I can think of locally is the Honor Flights which take veterans to Washington, D.C. to view war memorials, socialize, etc.  These flights began about 10- 12 years ago when somebody was visiting with World War II veterans and from that conversation realized that many of these people had not been recognized or had seen the memorials, so word got out, money was raised, professionals and laypersons volunteered to accompany them, hotels reservations meeting special needs were made, wheel chairs, nutrition and oxygen needs and many other needs were accommodated.  All this came together by word of mouth spreading to somebody who knew somebody who could had knowledge about whatever the challenge was that they needed to address.  That original flight grew per requests from others for WWII vets in the whole state of Nebraska, and then Western Iowa was included.  Then someone said “What about the Korean vets?” & then it was the Vietnam vets & then Desert Storm & so on. Recently there was a flight for women in service, and another is being planned for some other category.  I think there’s been 12 flights in all.

The other contribution that I recall is a lady taking meals on occasion to people she knew who had a short term need.  Word spread and requests were made to help others so these people volunteered to deliver them, donate for the food cost and help in other ways, and now it’s quite a large production.

This is one of many stories from a wide variety of sources and a multitude of forms contributed by people upon request for my 70th birthday.   They will be posted without editing, with the attribution that was with them.  I will be posting these regularly until they run out next year sometime: if you have others to add, please send them to me.

About jofacilitator

On Sept 1, 2020, I celebrated 50 years of work with the Institute of Cultural Affairs, facilitating meetings, groups, communities, and organizations, making it possible for ordinary people to have a voice in decisions that affect their lives. I retired on December 31, 2021, but still volunteer with the organization.
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