WEYBURN - Recently I fielded a phone call to the office, from an elderly reader concerned about having troubles finding reliable youth to help with lawn care at her residence.
We don’t really have those neighbourhood yard care youth anymore, who go around to houses to see if anyone needs help with mowing the lawn, raking the leaves, or shovelling the walk.
It goes hand-in-hand with the difficulty we have getting newspaper carriers. It just seems that youth are not interested in these little jobs.
It is also difficult to point a finger at the main culprit behind these behaviours. As a busy parent who works a full-time job, I was very grateful for the assistance and support from my father, who taught my son how to mow the lawn. Sometimes it just doesn’t feel like I have the time, once I get home from a long day of work.
This year my son Christopher was not only taught how to start and run the mower, but he was shown how to operate the snow blower for when Papa was away from the house.
I have heard through the grapevine that many local businesses have a hard time finding young employees, especially if they are only offering minimum wage.
Isn’t that where we all started? Then as you gain experience, you will be compensated accordingly.
The caller who started this conversation detailed to me how much things had changed since she was a youth, as it was expected for a young person to have little side jobs, in addition to any school time, or other work when she was younger.
As the oldest of three children, it was my responsibility to take care of the household chores when I was a young teen, to help out when both of my parents were employed. I also started my first real job right at 16, here in Weyburn, at the Town and Country Restaurant.
I learned from an early age how to manage a work and school life, in addition to being responsible for the household chores. To this day I consider myself to be very adept at managing work and home life, and multi-tasking when needed.
Our youth need those little side jobs to learn the values of responsibility, and to balance their own money. It is quite a joy to see the handful of young newspaper carriers who come into our office every two weeks to get their pay, without requiring any adult supervision, and knowing they are learning very valuable lessons.
Maybe this column will inspire one of our local youth to write to our paper, and get their voice heard. Maybe hearing from the youth will get some perspective on what they are expecting as they manage their lives.