It was through the Just Posts that I read something about all the women in Africa suffering from fistula, which is preventable and treatable. Yesterday one of my favourite photography blogs led me to this multimedia presentation about a hospital in Nigeria that treats women with fistula. Go watch it; it's beautiful. (Just click on multimedia when you get there.)
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This anniversary is also making me reflect on how the Just Posts have changed my life. On the first Just Post, I pledged to sponsor a child through Help Lesotho and I actually set it up six months later (I know, I suck. But at least I did it, even if it was disgustingly late. And we're still doing it.)
On the first anniversary last December, I pledged to volunteer two hours a month somewhere. I decided on the Drop In Centre, and after my first morning there, I immediately decided to make it two hours a week (give or take a weekend out of town or of illness). I'm still going strong on that.
Last January, I also started selling my prints online and donating at least 50% of the proceeds to the Stephen Lewis Foundation. I've donated more than $200 now from the sale of my prints.
Last Friday I got the following message from the foundation:
It is said that the international financial turmoil will undermine the work of agencies like ours. Supposedly there’ll be no money around for charitable purposes. My colleagues and I refuse to accept that. We work from the premise that the struggle against AIDS will not be sacrificed on the altar of financial turbulence.It makes sense to me that charitable organizations could be among the worst hit by the global financial downturn. And it makes even more sense to me that we not let it. (So c'mon, buy a print or a calendar? They make great gifts! Or how about just donate to a charity you believe in...)
So we’re defying the odds. And we’re asking you to do the same. In fact, we’re asking you to do more. We’re asking you to join us in a new fundraising campaign called “TURNING THE TIDE”.
It’s our conviction that so much has been accomplished on the ground in Africa, for grandmothers and orphans and women in particular, that if we can fund every worthy proposal, we can turn the tide of the AIDS pandemic at the grassroots.
People will say that the timing is all wrong. We say, to the devil with the timing. We’re on the cusp of bringing hope to thousands upon thousands of people living with HIV/AIDS. Please join us.
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So now what? I feel I need to mark this anniversary by doing something more. But I can't think what. Any ideas???