OCTOBER 30, 2020 – Many SKIL customers ask how they can pay us back for helping them. That’s a thoughtful, generous question that speaks of gratitude and giving hearts, and it is one of many reasons we love our customers.
I am reminded of a great concept, publicized in a movie called “Pay It Forward,” adapted from a novel by the same name. A young man devised a plan for people to say a tangible thank-you for good deeds done unto them by “paying it forward” to others.
We have been in a state of much uncertainty during this year of COVID-19. We are now in the last quarter of the year and still have little assurance that things will return to normal anytime soon. Many of us struggle with the phraseology and philosophies of the “new normal” and wonder what our futures will hold.
It is up to every one of us to make the most of each day. As the holidays approach, let us remember that we honor and celebrate the reasons for the holiday season, and that it is a season of giving. No virus is going to change that. We should start thinking now of ways to do good deeds and challenge others to do the same.
Do something kind for someone and then challenge him or her to pay it forward. It could be something small, like listening to others when they need to talk or checking on a neighbor, or something large, like giving someone a ride to the store or making a care package for someone having a hard time.
If we start practicing the wonderful concept of paying it forward, we will stop thinking so much of how bad things have been and start feeling better. This will strengthen our communities, reminding all that people with disabilities are intricately woven into the fiber of our nation and world.
Will you do a good deed for someone today, and encourage him or her to pay it forward?
by Andy Rausch and Joe Reinecker - With the election quickly approaching (it's a week away now!), we spoke with longtime SKIL board member Susan Robertson, who has a disbility herself, about the things she believes disabled people should remember when going to the polls (or voting from home).
“The main thing is, you need to know who is running,” Robertson says. “You need to find out exactly what they stand for. For us in the disability world, Medicaid expansion is an important issue. A lot of us have been pushing and pushing to get that passed for years. You want to know these things, and you want to make sure that whoever you vote for, whether it's for local office, state, or the country, you know what their views are on these issues that affect us. You want to find out if their views on every issue take the disability community into consideration. For a lot of people, the disabled are the last thing they think about, so it's up to us to make sure the candidates we support have our best interests at heart.”
Beyond this, she urges disabled voters to consider whether their candidates want SSI and social security raised or lowered. “People can't live like that. They're already some of the lowest paid people there are.”
She also wants people with disabilities to have a plan on how they will vote or go to the polls come election day. She urges people to make sure they have transportation arranged in advance and know where their proper polling location is. In addition, she says if you are planning to vote in advance, that you get your ballot in as quickly as possible.
“One of the smartest things I ever did was get an absentee ballot,” she says. “Because I don't drive and I have to depend on someone else to get me to the polls. If I can't get a ride at the last minute, I don't get to vote. And for myself, if I don't vote, I don't get to gripe.”
Home has never been more important. Our homes have always provided shelter, but in the midst of the COVID pandemic, home has become so much more. Home is where we receive our health care, educate our children, conduct business, and connect virtually for worship services, community meetings, and social gatherings.
While moratoriums have provided tenants with temporary protection from eviction, rent continues to accrue each month, leaving families unsure how they will pay arrears, and leaving landlords without monthly income to pay bills and manage maintenance and upkeep.
The Kansas Eviction Prevention Program (KEPP) provides rental assistance to households that have missed one or more rent payment(s) as a result of the COVID pandemic. Landlords and tenants apply via a joint online process. If the application is approved, the landlord receives rental assistance funds directly from KEPP, applies KEPP funds to the tenant’s account, and waives late fees for the month(s) assistance was awarded. Approved tenants are eligible for a maximum of nine months of assistance, not to exceed $5,000 per household.
To apply or for more information, CLICK HERE.