Give when you can

People should never forget where they come from.

That certainly was the case for a local man named Robert Eilers, president of Vesterra Group of Companies, who recently donated $50 million to build a mental health and addictions centre for youth in Guelph.

Clearly a successful business-man by most measures, he remembered times when he was less fortunate and decided to invest in youth. The investment is considered one of the single largest private donations to the Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA) of Canada.

The largesse of that gift is exceptional and sheds light on the idea that those who can, should.

Wellington County is quite fortunate to have so many generous residents who give of themselves to aid charities and organizations that are focused on a better quality of life for all residents.

Like Eilers, people gravitate to charities that mean something to them on a personal level. Whether that happens to be local sports, raising money for cancer research or choosing Big Brothers Big Sisters as a focal point, small business and more affluent citizens play a vital role in community building.

This leg up for mental health and battling the crippling aspects of addiction for youth is a timely gift. The past 16 months have been a difficult time for young people sequestered from friends. Choices to escape the realities of these hardships or double-down on unsafe activities with addictive substances has been a real challenge. Hopefully CMHA has the access now to resources that will aid in treatment and encourage young people to take a different path.

As Canadians emerge from a terrible 16 months of hardship, we encourage those capable of giving back and supporting community betterment to do so.

Olympic fever

First off, congratulations to local favourite, Paralympian Patrick Anderson. Along with most other residents we will join and cheer on this hometown personality whose efforts never disappoint.

As of press deadline, Canada has earned two gold, three silver and three bronze medals, for a total of eight in the Tokyo Summer Games. As Canadians take pride in those accomplishments by tremendous athletes, a shoutout to super fans and families are in order.

Sometimes there are athletes that make it to the very top of their field and part of that blessing includes performing in front of family and crowded stands. During this round of games, the stands are eerily quite and missing the experience are the very people who made sacrifices along the way to get athletes to practice and so on.

What has impressed us greatly this season is the incredible enthusiasm family members have ex-pressed on broadcasts. Proud moms and dads, sisters and brothers, gathered to celebrate incredible accomplishments and share their time with other Canadians.

As the medal count rises and Olympic fever goes on, three cheers go out to athletes and their families for representing the country well under trying circumstances.