Thursday, January 22, 2009

Raising money to ride to break the cycle

Hello everyone,

As some of you know I am going to bike ride 4000km across Europe this summer (from Amsterdam to Istanbul) with Global Agents for Change to raise money and awareness for micro credit.

One of my jobs for this trip is that I raise $4000 to contribute to the group fund and clearly I am going to need a little bit of help here. I know that $4000 seems like a lot of money at first, but I am always claiming that I know everyone worth knowing so this is a good way to put that to the test. If everyone I know is able to spare a little money to donate I would have no problem reaching my goal. Consider it a belated birthday present to me, except that you don’t need to worry about me wanting to take this gift back to the store.

I’m going to give everyone a link now where you can donate online (you can also give me cash or a cheque made out to Agents for Change).

Just hit the give now button and it will go to my fundraising efforts.

Also, please let me know if you do donate so I can send you a personal thank you note!

Now, for those detail orientated people, let me go into some of the specifics. Global Agents for Change is a group of social change catalysts that support sustainable solutions to global poverty and inspire youth to create a better world.

I personally have been working with them for about a year now helping out with various aspects of their communications committee (Check out:

One of Global Agents for Change’s big goals is to create the worlds biggest youth managed microcredit fund: they’ve raised over $91 000 already, and this tour and the Mexican one the total sure surpass $300 0000.

For those that don’t know, Micro credit is small trust based loans to the working poor. The reason this idea appeals to me is that it has a built in sustainability to it as once the loans are paid back the money can be put back into the system again. So a one time donation can continue to help people in need multiple times over.

As for the bike ride itself; the exact route is still being finalized but the totally distance will be about 4000km (basically riding from Vancouver to Toronto). Part of what I will be doing on this trip is hoping turn out fairly frequent written blogs (ideally about once every 3 days) as well as a video blog each week. If you want to keep track of our progress there should be lots of information being put up on the Global Agents for Change website as well as possibly on twitter through and

I don’t want to write too much more as I feel like I am starting to ramble but please feel free to ask me whatever you want, I’d love to talk to anyone about it more!

Thank you again to everyone,

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Not with a bang nor a wimper

This story is not set in some far away time or place that could be, it is about the here and now. It comes about not because evil won a war, but instead because humanity failed to understand and listen. It is amazing to think that in a time where information was so vast, knowledge so deep, and facts so glaring that such a simple thing could be forgotten, and yet simplicity in its most basic necessity is so elegant and pure that it is often glanced over as mundane. It is almost amusing the think that the straw that finally broke humanity was not a physical strike, or even an environmental catastrophe as we had all been mongered into believing. Instead, it was the human psyche that broke beyond repair. We lost our belief in belief and our hope for a better tomorrow.

The deathblow struck first the downtrodden and meek, then the weak willed, and after the masses had been laid low the remaining had little to do but succumb to the pandemic.
As to how this happened, the answer once again is as simple as the problem: there was more bad news than good.

It is easy to blame the media for an event of this nature as they were the ones feeding us despair on a silver spoon but ultimately, we still choose to gorge ourselves on it. We could have found alternative information sources, we could have scavenged for ourselves, but that would have required us to open our shutters and use our voices to speak with our neighbours, which seemed far too bothersome of a thought.

It was fear that kept us shackled to our keyboards and pleasureboxes. The fear however was not the one propagated to us by the media. We were not truly afraid to listen to the world because it may have hurt us. Instead, we were afraid to listen because the results of listening would have demanded action. If every person simply listened to the actual physical world around him or her, they would have had no choice but to take action

First belief was lost, and once that was gone hope shortly followed. Without hope and belief people simply lay down and died as they are just as precious to us as water and sunshine.
A great silence fell over the earth for the first time in millennia and planet earth could finally get a full night’s sleep, yet Mother Nature was not happy. It’s true the human’s were a troublesome lot, but they always had that glimmer of potential in their eye. No teacher wants any student to fail, no matter how much of a troublemaker than are, especially one with as much potential as humanity. If only humanity had listened when she was trying to teach it a lesson.

If anyone is still reading you probably think the ending is weak and possibly simple. Perhaps it ends too soon, too sharp, too sudden breaking up what seemed like a promising future and a glimmer of hope. I am not going to disagree with you, but instead, going to challenge you to listen. What needs to be changed here isn’t the ending but the entire story itself.