THE generosity of Yorkshire Post readers, in donating more than £200,000 – and counting – to this newspaper's Communities in Need appeal is made even more profound by the Archbishop of York's considered appraisal, on the opposite page, about poverty, and the importance of the biblical story about the Samaritan.
That people from all walks of life, and companies, have given so generously, and at the end of such a challenging year, is not a surprise. Yorkshire has an enduring tradition of benevolence, and we thank each and every person who has contributed to such a successful appeal.
At a time when it is difficult to avoid the fallout – politically, economically and socially – from the Government's cuts, this appeal has shown that many people are determined to make a difference.
They did not need David Cameron to launch his so-called 'Big Society'. They were already doing so before his political career had even begun. And they will continue doing so long after the Prime Minister has left Downing Street. Yet, if the impact of the cuts are to be mitigated, it will be as a result of individuals and communities pulling together, and in partnership with key organisations like the Yorkshire Community Foundations.
While the festive period is always a time for families, snow and ice permitting, to come together – and we wish our readers the happiest of Christmases – it is also a time for people to think how they can help the less fortunate in 2011.
For, as this newspaper's appeal has demonstrated so forcefully, the collective endeavours of this region can make a substantive difference as illustrated by the joy on the faces of children at the Rainbow Parent and Toddler group in Sheffield which has had the good fortune to become one of the first recipients of funding from Yorkshire Post readers.