After seeing the devastating scenes from The Bahamas, it is easier to tolerate the humidity we have experienced here in Indio of late. It is remarkable how many first responders and humanitarians step forward at times like this.
Here in Indio, I am so appreciative of my City teammates who work outside in the extreme heat. We do our best to limit their exposure to the worst of it, but our staff is out there serving the public, and they earn my respect every day. And of course, employees from the City of Indio are are part of a much bigger world of workers who grow our food, fix our cars, maintain our landscapes, police our streets, fight our fires, repair our utility lines, pave our streets, etc. Thank you to every one of them.
And of course, the worst of all summers are suffered by those who live on the streets or without cooling. A growing number of governments, nonprofit service providers, religious institutions and caring volunteers step up each day to address these time-critical needs. These humanitarians/heroes get better and more efficient in their efforts every year. I am so inspired every time I visit places like the Coachella Valley Rescue Mission, Martha’s Village, FIND Food Bank, and other frontline providers. I wish I could name them all. And people do not know how the medical community is involved, but they are. Thank you to JFK Hospital for the Emergency Service they provide to people in desperate need, and thank you to the community care facilities and “wrap-around” service providers who help people get off the street and back into happier lives.
Our Community recently voted to expand the boundaries of the Desert Healthcare District into the East Coachella Valley. They have immediately jumped into the homelessness arena to provide leadership and coordination that we have not had previously. We have also benefitted from enhanced leadership from Riverside County, and the Coachella Valley cities and tribal entities who are working through the Coachella Valley Association of Governments on a daily basis to bring focus and strategic direction to these important issues.
Our circumstances pale by comparison to the tragedy in The Bahamas, but you serve the needs of people one person at a time. I am so inspired by the capacities of strong communities like ours to address the needs of their neighbors.
Speaking of which—let me also acknowledge what started centuries ago as a post-harvest American tradition of sending our kids back to school in August or September. It is a time of hope and love. Without a doubt, our teachers and their support teams are a treasure!