Donations – in it for the prize?
Because the town I grew up in was rather small, and the county at one point was the poorest in the state, there was quite a stigma attached to me as I applied for jobs. “Where in the world is Kalkaska?!” Was often the first question most potential employers asked.
Fighting for a level footing in the big wide world, being from Kalkaska was more of a handicap than being female in a male dominated arena! I was, immediately, thought of as backwards and back woods.
When I would begin to defend Kalkaska, it would sometimes slip out that I was the Senior Class President. Too often showing my pride, “The first female senior class president in Kalkaska.” Based on this tid-bit of knowledge, my employers tended to expect more from me. I had to work harder than anyone else to prove myself. I was female, blonde, and worst of all from Kalkaska. Talk about uphill battles.
In an effort to pass along the torch, to make the lives of those who followed a little easier, I have always donated to Kalkaska. Not to gain a “prize”. Not for any “publicity”. And certainly not for a “better place in the community” for I never moved back.
But, I have wanted to help the place I learned most of life’s lessons. I have wanted to help those helping others. I wanted the school system to be one of the best. (there is no guarantee of quality in a larger scholastic system) When my friends, still in town, brought events to my knowledge I have made certain to participate as much as I could.
I joined a Facebook website called “You Know You’re From Kalkaska” to keep abreast of events happening. I tried to always share pertinent information to those who also left the community but try to stay involved. I decided to terminate that relationship, recently.
I have subsequently gone back to the site to see if I could copy/paste to substantiate. Thankfully, the unkind words have been taken down from the site. Thank you. However, my intent is not to point fingers at those involved. But to let others know that those people who cyber attacked me only made me leave the site not end my relationship with Kalkaska.
I donate because it’s the right thing to do, not because I might win some prize. The prize giver had been showing drawings and pictures of the items they intended to donate. I asked, many times, if they would promote the event and not the donation. To this, I was hounded. Told I must be jealous, that I am petty, and that I am mean, and just who did I think I was?!
I’ll be happy to tell you who I am. I am someone who grew up in Kalkaska and has been donating to the school system, among other worthy platforms, for nearly forty years. And…I know this may come as a surprise, I know many others who have donated far more that I, who also don’t need a prize in order to want a better heritage for those who come next.
Kalkaska is my “home town”. The local cyber-bullies haven’t run me out. They probably do need to watch out that I do not move back.