A couple of years ago, we implemented a seasonal recognition program called HomeProud. We wanted to put a positive spin on the appearance of private properties in Liberty County.
Yes, I know there are many properties that need improvement in our community. Improving the appearance of many of our properties is certainly something that must be done to improve our overall quality of life here. In pointing out that some things need to be fixed, I think we tend to overlook the many, many things that are right here. Programs like HomeProud and our Win-dex Awards (recognizing clean and attractive businesses) are in place for that purpose. Let’s not forget to recognize and thank the many citizens and businesses in our community who work daily to make their homes and businesses little slices of heaven. These properties are green and clean, junk-free and attractive. Wouldn’t it be nice if all of our properties were like that?
The HomeProud program is based on nominations from people — like you — who recognize and appreciate their neighbors who are HomeProud. These homes are displayed this month on our Keep Liberty Beautiful website picture gallery (www.keeplibertybeautiful.org ) and on our Facebook as well as the website picture gallery and in a nearby ad in this issue of the Coastal Courier, which has been a great friend for this recognition program.
The personalities of these yards are as varied as the personalities of the homeowners. They range from being lush spaces with flowers and greenery to shady areas with big, leafy trees and peaceful shade gardens. The yards and homes also vary from cozy bungalows to stately brick homes. This is one of those times when size does not matter; any home can be a HomeProud home. It just takes a little care, a little pride (the good kind) and a lot of love.
People take care of their homes and yards for many reasons. This season, we have nominations from a number of neighbors who have admired the efforts of their neighbors whom they nominated from afar. One noted that in spite of the nominee’s fight with cancer, they still faithfully work in their yard. One neighbor noted that all these years even into advanced age, the nominee remains dedicated to keeping that yard attractive and neat. We also have a home of a Wounded Warrior whose family has sacrificed so much for our country. Their deep appreciation and pride in their home shines through in the beauty of the well-tended landscape. One of our homes reflects the homeowner’s deep commitment to keeping her yard attractive as well as her neighborhood. She leads her neighbors in neighborhood cleanup projects, and this neighborhood has recently started its own “yard of the quarter” recognition program in their neighborhood.
One other consistent response we received as we notified these homeowners was a sense of delight that others have noticed and appreciated their efforts. We have some who actually tear up because it means so much to realize that others have admired their work. Yes, we have noticed all of your efforts and we sincerely appreciate your results.
The efforts that these homeowners make reflect positively on our whole community. When we began this program, we were very specific that this would not be a beauty or popularity contest. It is my firm belief that any home and any neighborhood — no matter the economic status of the owners — can and should be HomeProud. Where we live and how we take care of it says as much about us as our personal appearance does. That is true for private properties, businesses, neighborhoods, public green spaces and even communities. We should be concerned about appearances. We should be HomeProud … and Liberty Proud.
Thank you to this season’s homeowners: Mr. and Mrs. Franklin Wood, Allenhurst; Ken and Norma Koetz, Gum Branch; Mrs. Margie Fountain, Hinesville; Mrs. Lily Rutherford, Hinesville; James and Sheryl Harper, Hinesville; Jason and Elena Letterman, Hinesville; Johnny and Shevelva Beard, Hinesville; Mr. and Mrs. Jeff Ricketson, Hinesville; Mr. and Mrs. John Henderson, Colonel’s Island; James and Marsha Simmons Jr., Midway; Lelon Frasier, Walthourville; and Mr. and Mrs. Wendall Craven, Walthourville.