A blog about living in Aberdeen, New Jersey.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Aberdeen Cares Gets No Traction

The Aberdeen Township Council announced its Aberdeen Cares program back in March 2011. Mayor Tagliarini, Councilperson Margaret Montone and Acting Town Manager Holly Reycraft launched a public relations campaign and hosted a meeting or two, but the program remains only the kernel of a well-meaning idea. Ms Reycraft started a volunteers list, according to the Town Council's April 2011 minutes, but that's about as far as this project has gotten off the ground.

According to The Independent, the Aberdeen Cares Committee promised to visit community groups, schools, and houses of worship with information about the initiative. Have your particular groups within the Township heard directly from Aberdeen Cares? I suspect not or there would have been discussion of it in Township minutes.

From what I hear, the Township is actually not looking for citizens who will step up and help clean some gutters or paint some fences for the poor, elderly, or infirm. Rather, they are seeking one or two people who will find and lead a group of volunteers to pursue those admirable goals and take responsibility for raising the necessary funds and insuring the program. The Township cannot get involved in such an endeavor, so they are taking the role of providing inspiration. This seems to be the main impediment to progress in what seems a well-meaning community project.

It's odd that a municipality would seek to form a non-governmental organization (NGO), if you ask me. It's a nice ultimate goal to help those in need but Aberdeen Cares is an unworkable idea of how to get there. Perhaps instead some local community organizations could take the lead on this? Since snow-bound sidewalks started this whole idea, maybe a group could launch this program by soliciting volunteers to clear particular sections of sidewalk in the winter? The Township could assist by making sure the plows don't undo the efforts by piling snow high on walkways.


Post a Comment