Many residents and business owners in Dewsbury are demoralised by the state of the town - and frequently voice that opinion whenever they get the opportunity.
But here's a story to cheer you up.
Today, Dewsbury figured on national televison news due to an initiative that started with community action right here in Dewsbury just 2 weeks ago.
If you were watching the BBC national news this evening you will have seen the piece about an international charity offering emergency dental care here in Dewsbury.
It's the very first emergency clinic of this type in the UK.
Check out the link here:
As a result the BBC got our MP, Paula Sherriff, into the studio for an interview and it highlighted the problem which will give her more leverage in any discussions with the Health Minister.
Yet the emergency clinic that was featured is actually The Real Junk Tooth Project, started right here in Dewsbury just 2 weeks ago by a local dentist together with Paul Burr who started the Dewsbury branch of The Real Junk Food Project which intercepts food that would otherwise go to waste and ensures that it gets cooked and fed to someone.
The Junk Food project doesn't care who eats it or how much they pay for it, as long as it goes to #fillbelliesnotbins. So much of it goes to the disadvantaged and those in food insecurity (we used to call that 'hungry'!) due to low income etc.
So what's the connection?
- They applied the same process to solving the problem - commonly called: just do it! Find some volunteer dentists and nurses, some organisation from Dentaid and then put the word out on the street.
- Those people with tooth problems probably have not been to the dentist for a long time and that's either because there there are not enough dentists to go around or that they can't afford even a trip to an NHS dentist. And that's many of the same people who are turning up at The Real Junk Food Cafe every week.
So it really was not hard to fill the dentist's chair each week.
And the moral of this story?
This town CAN do it. No matter how grim the situation might appear it only takes a few good people to fix a problem. And there are lots of good people in this town.
Are you one? If so then get across to our Supporters page and sign up to show that you are willing to get involved.