A Sense of Community.
This has been a difficult month for me. On top of the usual craziness, I have been dealing with some difficult issues as a caregiver and family member. It has sapped my time and my energy, and the outcome wasn’t preventable. What has made the situation more bearable has been the outpouring of support from friends and neighbors.
Decisions have been postponed, meetings restructured, burdens shared as a result of neighbors coming together in time of need. Sidewalks swept, mail picked up, plants watered. Not big things, but unattainable under the circumstances were it not for caring members of the community. Little things can seem insurmountable when they all pile up at difficult times. Having those things done, many unexpectedly, makes a far larger impact at times like these.
I owe a large debt of gratitude to the HVNA Board members and several of my other neighbors for helping me through this. I also owe them for the reminder of what a difference a sense of community can make.
At our October meeting, that sense of community was demonstrated in a different way. After many meetings with neighbors, committee members and the Planning Dept, Age Song Senior Communities asked for, and received, the endorsement of the membership for its proposed third senior care facility at Hayes and Laguna. Much of the discussion centered around what good neighbors Age Song/Hayes Valley Care have been in the ten years they’ve been in the neighborhood, and as they have gone through the process of building their second facility and planning their third.
Also at that meeting, the developers of the UC Extension site gave a lengthy presentation of their revised proposal, citing the feedback received from the neighborhood at the series of meetings sponsored by the Transportation and Planning committee for several of the changes. After the presentation there was lengthy and lively feedback from a community that cares not only about the present, but also the future. My take on the feedback was that while the project is seen as better than that first presented to the community, there are grave concerns remaining that UC and the developers must take into account if they expect community support. We will be following up on this and keeping everyone advised on our plans and timeline for action.
In closing, thank you all for being part of a caring community. Whether your actions help an immediate neighbor, someone down the block, or even someone who may not move to this area for some time, they are appreciated and necessary for this neighborhood to be at its best.
In case I don’t have the chance to do so in person, let me wish you happy holidays now.