A two-pronged mission

Published 12:23 pm Wednesday, December 5, 2018

First and foremost, it’s important as a community member to be involved in one’s county, to go directly to the source, or multiple sources if there is a concern. Rumors can run rampant. Governmental bodies or organizations that provide a community service have a responsibility to provide answers if there are questions, or solutions if there are problems, even if the answer is that the question cannot be answered right now.

We at The Kenbridge-Victoria Dispatch feel we have a responsibility to address questions or concerns that come from our neighbors. One such question and concern was in reference to the response to a recent house fire that occurred in Kenbridge that resulted in a total loss of the home. The report included that a water tanker from the Kenbridge Fire Department was found to not have water inside of it, raising the question of whether this impacted the course of the fire.

According to Kenbridge Fire Department Chief Richard “Dickie” Harris, Firefighter Julie Rifkin and Nina Davis the water tanker was broken and undergoing repairs. Those who transported the tanker to the site at the night of the fire, Harris said, were not aware that the tanker had not yet been fixed.

They cited that there were other factors in relation to the fire, including windy weather conditions and the property’s location off main roads.

It takes speaking with multiple sources to gain a full understanding of the situation.

Our mission as community citizens could be described as being two-pronged: there’s the understanding that we have a responsibility to support the organizations designed to serve us, whether that’s through donations or attending fundraising functions.

The second prong is our responsibility to fully understand the services and needs that these organizations are meant to provide. It’s sometimes holding organizations accountable if we see discrepancies between the organization’s mission and the actual service it is providing.

This is why it is important to go directly to the sources when these concerns arise. Like many fire and rescue organizations, there’s the challenge of paying for these repairs, costs that have risen exponentially in recent years. We understand volunteers, who make enormous sacrifices, are human like the rest of us. Yet we have a right to be concerned if equipment cannot be of service in the event of an emergency.

We at The Dispatch understand we may not have the full answer. However, we are committed to informing our readers as much as possible of questions and dilemmas in the community, and setting an example of the importance of engaging with organizations that impact the area.