I was disappointed to see Saturday’s Feb. 6 front-page article regarding the effort to promote solutions to the problems of inadequate roads and struggling schools. The remarks quoted give the impression that those who live in the Kiawah and Seabrook communities are focused entirely on what is good for them at the expense of Johns Island residents, and that consequently dedicated school- teachers, among others, are “incredibly insulted.”
I’ve been in the schools on Johns Island, working as a mentor under the Communities in Schools program. A number of Kiawah and Seabrook friends of mine have also served as tutors and as mentors, and not only have our freely given efforts been helpful to at-risk students, but my impression from teachers and administrators has been that, far from being insulted, they truly appreciate our efforts.
We have hundreds of friends who have settled on these islands, mostly in retirement, who are consciously “giving back,” to the greater community.
Few of us have school-age children, but we work as fund raisers, teacher’s assistants, we provide food, clothing, and holiday presents for needy families which have been identified by the local schools. Our support has gone to most if not all of the public schools on Johns and Wadmalaw islands.
Kiawah and Seabrook residents are also the backbone of numerous charitable organizations that support the local community: Backpack Buddies, Kiawah Cares, Seabrook Shares, and the Hunger Awareness Group to name a few. People from this community founded The Low Country Free Medical Clinic and provide essential ongoing support, both time and finances, to help it do its wonderful work on Johns Island.
We have traditionally been workers and financial supporters of Habitat for Humanity, Our Lady of Mercy, Respite Care, and Meals for the Homebound.
The article gave the impression that we do not care, but we do. We not only “talk the talk” we “walk the walk.”
As for the issues of the roads, I do not pretend to know the best solution, but anyone can see that inadequate road capacity exists, and it is getting worse every month as development surges. It is not only inconvenient but also dangerous, and a solution will benefit everyone on Johns Island.
Please, we need to deal with the problem and stop the vitriol.
Richard W. Hughes
Little Creek Road