Sunday, 15 August 2010

Fresh Air Fund

A while back Sara wrote to me and asked me to publicise the non-profit that she's involved in and inadvertently showed me a glimpse of what I'm doing with my life .

As those of you who are still waiting for post from me will have noticed I tend to let everything else get in the way, and I despite my good intentions I did nothing about her request. Then by chance I read this post on a blog I'd never read before. The Fresh Air Fund is a very cool organisation, that match families living in the fresh air with children who live without it in the city. It works out so well that as of last year 65% of the children we invited back.

A couple of years ago I worked with a grey haired Scottish guy, with piercing blue eyes that could look into your soul, who had been a minister in Texas, and then in Mexico working with the very poorest people, at the bottom of the food chain. As we travelled we'd sit up into the night talking about the nature of the universe, the gulf between saying and doing and role religion plays in the world, one thing he said still haunts me. It was at the end of a story about why he left his comfortable life with his wealthy flock in Texas "they seemed to think if we told people about being christian that would be enough, I thought if we showed them being christian that would be a start". While I'm not what you'd call blessed with faith myself, I could see his point. We could change the world, if only we were wise enough to do it one person at a time.

Living in the city I'm not able to extend an invitation myself, but if you can I'd bet you'd find it the best thing you've done in years. Kids are kids; they delight in the smallest things and are naturally drawn to all that the outdoors has on offer. These kids don't have the start in life that many of us enjoyed, but with just a few days exposure, will surely become the outdoor advocates of tomorrow. So if you're concerned about the way the worlds going, the lack of options inner-city kids have, and the wholesale destruction of the natural world, here's your chance to make the most difference with the smallest amount of input. A week living with a little person (who may just teach you something about yourself), or a blog post to spread the word.

Thanks for your help
PS If you fancy sending a few bucks, a very cool donor is matching funds, for every dollar you send they'll send one too.