From the desk of Harvest Foundation President Kate Keller
This has been a rough couple of weeks for our country. Too many lives lost from hate, trauma, and illness. As I write this, we are learning more about the children, teachers, and individuals working or shopping who lost their lives and more about the young men who took them. All of it tragic and all of it wrenching. We’ve entered into the phase of no longer being shocked, no longer saying “it couldn’t happen here.” We all now know that it can.
Our children now go to school knowing this can happen to them. What do you think that feels like for them? To know that school may not be the safe haven that it should be and is for so many kids. The expectation that someday this could be their school, their friends, their teachers. How are they coping? How are our teachers coping? Our parents?
This is not something we can hide from. Children who experience trauma in their youth can grow up with lots of challenges, and for some, their mental health suffers tremendously. The combination of severe mental illness, youth, and access to high-powered weapons is deadly.
Harvest is committed to increasing access to mental health services and works closely with our providers to do the best we can for our small community. There are challenges, many. We all know it’s not enough, but we must keep at it. We must focus on the trauma our children (and adults) experience and find ways to help them through it. Harvest is here and ready to work with all of you to keep our children and schools safe.
My heart breaks for the families of those who lost loved ones in Uvalde, Texas, and in Buffalo, New York. I offer my deepest condolences and pray they have the support they need to begin healing from these senseless acts.