A Doug's Life: All for One, One for All

Ever since I first introduced the idea of a volunteer "Menifee Rides" carpool program to help get Menifee students to school this fall, I have been faced with questions. So before we move any further along in the process, here are the answers:

Why didn't someone do this before?

Having lived here only since October, I can't say for sure. My guess is that most residents of Menifee would rather have a root canal than get involved with a project so widespread with so many challenges. I'd say that's a pretty natural reaction. What I hope is NOT the reason is that people may have become disillusioned about the whole concept of volunteering.

Don't you know this idea will fail?

"Failure is not an option," as someone once said. This project might not be as successful as we'd like it to be, but it won't fail. Its degree of success depends on the number and attitude of the folks on the Menifee Rides bandwagon.

Do you have the support of the school district or City Hall?

Officially, they can't give it and I don't expect it. For liability reasons, organizations such as these can't give formal endorsement or get involved in the operations of the project. The rest of us, we're private citizens offering to help each other out. They can't stop us from doing that.

How will you protect our children when they get into someone else's car?

I can't protect all our children. WE can protect all our children -- by partnering with friends and neighbors, not strangers; by checking the backgrounds of those we don't know through the Megan's Law website and by other means; by STICKING TOGETHER and finding the best way to provide safe transportation for each other to and from school.

How do you know my child won't be getting into a car with a child molester?

How do you know a child molester won't snatch your kid up on the sidewalk? You don't, but you take every available precaution, you pray, and you make smart choices. If you don't believe in this program, you don't have to participate. Just don't criticize those who do.

How many people have volunteered to help?

Not enough. I have received several emails to the address set up for this project, menifeerides@gmail.com, but we need lots more to address the need at each individual school.

What's the next step?

We need to:

-- Start pairing up people who live in the same neighborhood and identifying who needs rides, who can drive, who can trade days, etc.

-- Get some volunteers who can help me recruit and organize transportation in each area.

-- Consider a planning committee (I can't do it alone!)


As the headline says, we must have a "All for One, One for All" mentality. With this, we can get it done.

Please email me at menifeerides@gmail.com

Until then, have a nice day. :)


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