When my father passed away I inherited some money. Not a huge sum, but a tidy one. And mostly I sat on it and then used it to move to Ohio and to live fairly relaxedly the first two years I was here. But I also bought three things with it. I bought a fridge for my apartment because if the POS one that came with the joint froze over ONE MORE TIME I was going to lose MY shit. And I brought out my oldest and best childhood friend for a lovely visit. She is a super awesome human doing good works and deserved it. Plus, I got to show her my lovely life in California. And I had always wanted to have a party with a really good live band and a bartender and and and…
So I hired a lovely trio who sang old standards and some new ones too. I set up a cool little space for them to perform in and I bought a custom made 1940s patterned dress and a fascinator. But then I thought, why not do a party with a purpose? Let's make it a charity event! So we did. I collected donations and raffled them off and all told I raised about $550 dollars.
The charity I chose was Nothing But Nets. I found them, along with Smile Train as two of the most effective charities to which to donate. For every $10 you donate, a family in a village plagued by malaria receives an insecticide laced mosquito net to sleep under. And the cool thing is…even if every member of the village doesn't receive a net, however many they do receive benefits all the households. In high concentrations the nets can reduce the occurrence of malaria by 90%. That is super cool.
But why I chose it is because just about EVERYONE has $10 to spare. For myself I often get overwhelmed at the enormity of a situation. And that overwhelm shuts me down. But here is a manageable bite. And an effective one. My charity event bought 55 nets. I directly made something like 200 people's lives better. Wow.
One thing I love about about my current world is that everybody and their brother seems to have a small or medium-sized charity that they have created. They help animals, soldiers, the mentally ill, single mothers, battered women, school children, food pantries, the coasts and oceans, after school programs and on and on and on. And maybe in some cases it is just marketing. I'm Machiavellian enough to be okay with that (How's THAT for turning that phrase on its head!). But I think that there is a spirit of do good that is real in our world…and especially in the young and almost young of our country. It heartens me…even though often I am a bleak realist.
We toyed around with ideas about how to make our recent house concert with MELODIME and Charlie Oxford into a bit of a charity event. MELODIME, in fact, has started their own charity called Now I Play Along Too. And we came up with some good ideas. But we just didn't have enough time to properly execute them. So I have decided to host another party late summer or early fall. I will pick a good little charity to donate to… and y'all are welcome to make suggestions as well…and we are all going to get together and do a little good while having a lot of fun. Deal?
Be there or be square!
Peace and good things.