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Allyson and her daughter helping out after the storms

By Allyson Jay

Be a Neighbor

May 12th, 2024

We often say at KVNO that we have been elevating your day for over 50 years, and it’s true. We love bringing some of the world’s greatest music to you in the Omaha Metro and beyond, and we feel honored to be part of this community.

If only classical music could solve all the many problems we face in this world, but we know it can’t. But people working together to help one another—that is a force to be reckoned with, stronger than any storm.

It has been inspiring to see people from all over the Metro come together to help those most affected by the tornadoes. From donating much needed supplies to perhaps the even more needed helping hands, neighbors are helping neighbors and strangers are becoming neighbors.

The Sunday following the April 26th storms, the Elkhorn neighborhood we were signed up to help in was overwhelmed with so many volunteers, they turned us away. No matter, a friend of a friend heard of someone in Iowa with extensive damage to their property, so to the other side of the river we went.

It was wet, muddy, messy work, but we weren’t alone. Thirty or so people from age 10 to 70 came with trucks, chain saws, and those helping hands, and many returned the following weekend to continue the work. Strangers no more.

Soon, the most immediate needs of our community will be met and the sense of urgency will fade away, but our continued support will still be needed. The fact is, we need each other all the time, tornado or not.

All around us are strangers waiting to be neighbors. It may seem counterintuitive, but one of the best ways to lift ourselves when we’re feeling down is to help someone else. No act of kindness is too small to make a difference, and we can all do something, even if that something is simply a smile and a hello to a passerby.

I am a classic introvert. There is nothing I love more than flopping on the couch at the end of the day with a bowl of ice cream and a good book or movie or symphony as my only companion. I need this alone time so much, that as my teenagers get older and stay up later, so do I, just to have those precious moments to myself.

But even I must concede that I need connection and community in my life. I need more neighbors and less strangers.

So join with me in continuing to make Omaha a place we all want to live. Be the kind of neighbor you wish you had, to everyone you meet, in good times and in bad.