Every day we hear about the bad stuff. It washes over us like a giant tsunami. The evening news is grim. Globally our environment is in trouble and there is conflict everywhere. Nationally we have suffered through a campaign full of disrespect, bigotry, divisiveness and all manner of insults. We worry about the future of our “leaders.” Every day we hear about violence in our schools, killing of police, disrespect toward minorities, religions and life styles. Closer to home our Kansas economy is in big trouble. Farm income is slipping ever downward; our local stores and job opportunities are shutting down. It seems the very things we hold dear- -education of our children, college opportunities, our health insurance, our retirement and more- -are in danger.

Is there no hope? What can we do in the face of this deluge? Well, right here in the middle of Kansas, many of us have not succumbed to this flood. Julia Taylor and her HUGS (Hats, Underwear, Gloves and Socks) program knows what to do – she works to supply children with needed items through your donations. Susan Patterson and the FCCLA group know what to do – they work to make lives better through several worthy programs. Many of our most concerned citizens, neighbors, local businesses know what to do – you support service organizations here and across our world.

We stand up in the face of this storm of negativity. Every day we let our positive hopes and caring values be known. We let it be known that we value education, kindness, the future of our local workers, the future world of our children and grandchildren. We shout out these positive values from our very rooftops. Many of you have figured this out and, those of us who care, thank you. We have noticed. We are grateful.

We have noticed that right here in Stafford County, you care that our children, who are functioning in this ever-more negative world, deserve more. You have given generously so that their Christmas is happier. About 50 of our local children will be getting gaily-wrapped new jeans and shirts and socks and gloves to open on Christmas morning. Santa is alive and well in Stafford County.

And now? If you would like to join those of us who are resisting the flood of negativity, here is one way.

The Secret Santa Fund of Stafford County can still use your monetary donation!

Contact Andrea Sayler-Siefkes (andrea.siefkes@gmail.com )or mail you check to “Secret Santa Fund” attn. Marla I., Treasurer 505 N. Broadway, St. John, KS 67576