Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Wellness Wednesday: Making A Difference


I wanted to share with everyone an opportunity to make a difference that I found out about from yertle. Part of being healthy is contributing to others' lives, and though I know we all do this in various ways, this way in particular was especially rewarding to me today.

The opportunity is called DonorsChoose.org and the way it works is that public school teachers put requests into the database for certain supplies, or trips, or visitors, or basically any materials or whatever that they think their students really need, but that they cannot afford. You can review all of the projects and search based on many different criteria. Then you give any amount of money, whatever you can afford, towards a project that appeals to you.

So tonight LoveHubbie and I donated to a school in rural West Virginia that desperately needed dictionaries. Desperately. They had been waiting since May and received nothing until tonight. The requesting teacher was a previous student who had gone to college and come back to teach at the same public school she had attended. This really impressed me. I was so happy! I could just imagine how excited everyone would be, getting something so incidental for a well-funded school---some dictionaries---but actually very huge for their little school. They were all sharing several worn out paperback dictionaries that were 7 years old, falling apart, and actually had chunks missing so that the students never knew if they would be able to look up the words they wanted.

I would have been happy just for the thrill of donating, but the students then send thank you notes. This really is a brilliant idea. Everyone wins.

You can even buy gift cards for a specific amount of money and then give the card to someone who can then pick out which project they wish to donate to. How cool is that?

Check it out, it's such a positive and creative way to help young people!

~Photo via Cute Overload

10 comments:

Kate said...

Olivia,

What a wonderful way to foster positive change in the world and feel good at the same time.

Kate

Olivia said...

Kate,

Yes, indeed. Creative and positive. And even $5 could make a difference because it all adds up. Amazing.

Thanks for checking it out, Kate. Have a great day. Love, O

thailandchani said...

That's a great idea! However, I must admit that it reminds me of the old bumper sticker "Let the military hold a cake sale to build more bombers."

This kind of program is something that shouldn't even be necessary.

:)

~*

Kikipotamus said...

That is VERY cool, and I love the fact that you two did it together. For me, one of the tests of a relationship is...what are we doing for the world? For our community? For our friends or neighbours or family?

patti said...

So much goodness going out, coming in. The ebb & flow of giving/receiving. Well done both of you.

Olivia said...

Chani,

You're right, it shouldn't be...but it is. It is sad that our public schools are not well-funded, nor equally funded.

Some of the systems in our culture are so broken that it's hard to know where to begin to reform them. Some seem to be needing almost starting from scratch.

This is one way to light a candle in the darkness...and of course, to vote. Still, it's just a start.

What can we do?

I am happy each think of those dictionaries, and thrilled that the kids WANT them. The kids I know would turn up their noses at a dictionary...I am grateful for those West Virginia kids today.

I went to school in WV and as an army brat, consider myself from there when I need to pick a place to be "from".

Blessings to you today, and love,

O

Olivia said...

Kelly,

Well...we sort of did it together. It wasn't all warm and fun as it could have been. I found the site from yertle and then asked LoveHubbie about it. He said, "Sure, sure, whatever." Then I found out about the specific kids. I told him a little about it in about 90 seconds. He said, "Fine." Then I went and took care of things and finished everything. He is really busy. Too busy to think much about such things. I know that he's behind it but his mind is on other things---his work and his abundant personal issues and crises. He is basically just trying to survive until our vacation in November.

I wish we had times like that...discussing things...talking about the kids...deciding which project would reflect our values more, etc.

But for right now, I can be the arm of the relationship that reaches out to others in this way. LoveHubbie spends his work reaching out to others and is too tired to think much of anything else.

Sigh! But I know what you mean, Kelly. And I agree with you wholeheartedly!

xxooxx, O

Olivia said...

Patti,

I like the going out and do FAR too little of it. Too self-centered dealing with my personal problems and issues, like LoveHubbie. This is an area I want to change very much though. To give back much much much more in gratitude for all I have received. And to just be in that flow that keeps us all connected.

Blessings and love as always, O

yertle said...

So glad you contributed. It gets addicting because once I get the letters and pictures from the classroom it makes me want to do it all over again.

Olivia said...

yertle,

Me too, I already want to do more!

Thank you so much for the link :)

xxoo, O