Dec 2, 2011 Charity & Volunteering
I’m thrilled to be chairing a campaign from ONE.org (you know, Bono?) that will give you twelve different ways to raise awareness about how lucky we are to live where we live, and about what’s going on in places not so fortunate.
ONE does not ask people like us to write a check. They help spread awareness about what’s happening in places hit hardest by things like poverty, draught, and AIDS, so that we can help convince governments to write checks – big ones. I was lucky enough to attend a taping of The Daily Show with ONE the other night when Bono was the guest, and he was speaking about his goal of ending the spread of AIDS by 2015. Not reducing, ending. That takes vision, and funding.
But the 12 Days of Change campaign looks at things on a smaller scale: what can I do to help? What can I do to make my family aware of what’s going on? ONE has come up with twelve “actions” that you can take. These are not big things, but they are discussion starters and eye openers. They could even be family projects.
I’ve recruited twelve blogger friends to announce these actions, one per weekday, starting yesterday with Jyl Johnson from Mom It Forward. It’s a fun one: to watch the World AIDS Day broadcast produced by ONE (you can find the link in Jyl’s post).
I doubt I can get my kids to sit down with me and watch the whole broadcast (it’s more than two hours long) but I’m going to ask them to watch parts of it tonight, maybe before our regular movie night. I’ll even bribe them with popcorn if I have to (don’t tell them they were going to get it anyway!).
The Day 2 action I’m announcing is a little more involved, but right up my alley:
Make a batch of holiday cookies or treats for a friend, neighbor, teacher or anyone who needs something sweet in their week
I’m going to go a bit further than bringing in a treat for a teacher. I’m going to bring in treats for ALL the teachers and staff at my kids’ school. And while I can’t complete the action today, I did get started by baking a couple of big cakes that are now in the freezer, waiting to be turned into cake pops (something I just learned to make but am now obsessed with). I’ll add a couple batches of brownies to that as well, since I’m known at that school for my brownies. I’m going to get together with our principal and find a good day to leave a big “Thank You!” spread in their lounge.
I chose this action as mine because, well, baking. But also, because I always mean to do things like this but don’t follow through a lot of the time, and that’s a little sad because every time I do follow through, I’m so glad! It only takes a little effort to tell those around us how much we appreciate them, how glad we are to have them in our lives.
And, this is a great example of doing something you like to do for others – doing something nice doesn’t have to be painful or unenjoyable. Find something you like to do and then figure out how that thing could help others. I sold baked goods last year to raise money for pediatric cancer – I did something good by doing something I liked, and the people who bought my stuff raved. Everybody won.
So what does me baking for teachers have to do with Africa or AIDS or poverty? Well, the more I appreciate what I have (a good public school close by, teachers and staff who care about my kids), the more likely I am to want to make other people’s lives better too. It’s that simple.
So, I’ll be posting and tweeting when each new blogger announces that day’s action, and I’d love to hear from you if you do any – or all! – of them.
Originally posted on Selfish Mom. All opinions expressed on this website come straight from Amy unless otherwise noted. This post has a Compensation Level of 0. Please visit Amy’s Full Disclosure page for more information.