As a University, Fairfield holds the Jesuit values it operates under near and dear. Magis, cura personalis, reflection and “men and women for others” are the principles that Fairfield prides itself on. Therefore, as students at Fairfield, we ought to consider “men and women for others” when any natural disaster strikes our nation.
When Hurricane Harvey wreaked havoc on residents of Texas, and again when Hurricane Irma hit Florida more recently, it became imperative that the nation as a whole step up and help the people of Texas and Florida in any way that they could. However, as students at a Jesuit university, it’s important that we follow our value of “men and women for others” and do our part to help the residents of Texas and Florida who were affected by the two hurricanes.
While both Texas and Florida are hundreds of miles away from Fairfield, Conn., many Fairfield students have grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins who reside in the areas that each hurricane hit. And with Hurricane José set to make its way up through New Jersey and into New England, there’s the potential for even more of our loved ones to be in risk of danger in the coming days. While students with family in Florida and Texas weren’t directly affected by the devastating blows of Harvey and Irma, if you know someone who has relatives or friends living in either impacted territory, it can’t hurt to reach out to them with kind words. While kindness won’t do anything to lessen the effect that the hurricanes had on these poor individuals, offering words of kindness is one of the easiest gestures you can offer another individual. And at the risk of sounding sappy, it’s incredible how deeply just a few kind words can touch another individual.
Another way Fairfield students can do their part to help the victims of Harvey and Irma is through monetary donations. The University is currently working on providing links on their website where students and faculty can donate money to help those residents in the affected areas fix any damaged property or replace lost possessions. While donating only $5 or $10 on the website may seem trivial, if the whole University and even the whole country donates this much, the victims of these tragedies will be well on their way to restoring their homes, businesses and cities that were damaged by the hurricanes. It sounds cliché to say, but any small contribution of monetary value can go along way in helping those affected by Harvey and Irma, even if it appears as though a single individual’s contribution makes little difference.
When Hurricane José makes its way up toward New England, it will be of increasing importance for Fairfield students to band together, as “men and women for others” and do their part to support and assist our fellow students if they, their families or friends are at all impacted by the hurricane. It’s the least we can do as Jesuit students and more importantly, decent human beings, to help those in our nation’s time of need.