Help me to help others

28 09 2010

Hi everybody!

I know I haven’t been the most superb blogger lately, but that can be attributed to a lot of things… a short attention span for one. Anyway, I had a phone call that really got to me the other day. I’ve been getting  a lot of rejection calls and emails from various organizations, schools and businesses after I apply for a job lately. Apparently the job market is über competitive right now; I’m facing that head on. My “seasonal” position was cut short by the return of the owner’s kid. Family first, right? It was much earlier than I thought, but for the last month I have been searching for a job that is relevant and meaningful. I didn’t pay almost six figures to wait tables, I did it so I can make a difference.

Well that’s been hard without a job. In the past, when I was stable enough to do so, I made a donation to my favorite Oregon NGO, MercyCorps. (Working there would actually be my dream job, but I’m in no way qualified to do that right now. One day I will!) It may be just a small donation, but I was able to give something and know that I wouldn’t be in the red. That isn’t the case right now. I have loans to pay and limited savings.

When I got a phone call from a man with a deep, boxing announcer-esque voice, he told me in pretty good detail what the majority of funds and efforts are going to. Haiti, which is recovering at a rate significantly slower than anyone expected for the outpouring of relief efforts, and Pakistan, which has received almost ZERO coverage in the media for the massive flooding that has started in July and continues today. UN estimates say that there are between 6-8 million people that are without basic necessities: food, water, shelter and medical care.  I just don’t find that reasonable. Yes, there’s a massive flood. Yes, there are millions of people displaced. However, aid needs to get on the ground and to the people who need it most NOW.

I knew that the phone call wasn’t to tell me that I got my dream job, it was to ask for a donation. It truly broke my heart that at that moment, I couldn’t actually say yes to a donation. I know that not all of us can make a direct donation of straight up money, but there are ways to support organizations like MercyCorps while making a purchase. Partner programs with Amazon.com and Powell’s Books give a percentage of the sale price to the organization without any cost to you as a consumer.

I’m going to somewhat install myself as a middle man. I’ve created my own partner program with Powell’s Books, and if you shop on their website while going through any of the links on the right, either buying or selling online, my website will generate a small percentage of the sale.

I am going to donate the proceeds from any sale on the Powell’s website to MercyCorps, and the money will be used where it is needed most. So order away, guilt free. You’re doing a good deed in getting the entire Harry Potter series before the final two films come out. Stock up for the gift-giving holiday of your choice, and rest assured that a portion is going to an organization that truly makes a difference.

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