Realizing I Can Help...Again...
I think it's so easy to find inspiration. Be it a book, a news cast, an article, a cheesy commercial, a documentary....anything can make you feel like "I want to do SOMETHING to help." It's just the actual doing that rarely comes into play.
This is the second time I'm going to DO something. To find my "bigger calling." To be inspired and act on it.
The big question...HOW? And to get there I have to look back and say, why did it not work before? The first answer to that is TIME. I work full-time. I'm also a wife, mommy to a 3 year old and pregnant with the second to boot, a friend who rarely finds time to be a better friend, and once in awhile I'm a girl who wants to sit on a couch (though she rarely exists). The second big problem was ACCOUNTABILITY. If this project is my own, then what does it matter if it doesn't work? What if, like last time, I just stop blogging. Big whoop.
I find the solution to both these problems in this answer: MAKE A PLAN & SET GOALS
I didn't have a plan before - I chased local outreach organizations and helped a bit here and there. I read articles on national needs. I raised a bit of money for this project and some groceries for this project and in my efforts to make the world a better place I just ended up feeling scattered. I also wanted to do too much at once. It takes a PLAN.
So, here's my plan this time around:
1 - Define my truest interests in helping others. That which touches my heart the most is the needs of women and children, but specifically I think I want to target their needs with that of education.
2 - Target ONE group/organization that reaches out to my interest groups. Right now I'm looing in Givology. It's a very small volunteer-based organization started at the University of Pennsylvania. It helps specific individuals/projects internationally with education-based progrmas - whether its uniforms or textbooks for a school, providing a salary for a teacher, or helping provide a small donation to keep a young person in school. They provide simple ways to help individually on a short-term and long-term basis and there are opportunities to help more in group-based efforts in the future.
3 - SHORT term plan:
*Keep up with the blog. At least ONE posting each week.
*Connect with Givology on social networks and repost their tweets/fb status at least TWICE per week.
*Respond/Reflect/Get Involved in Givlogy's networking so that I'm doing more than just READING, I'm also providing feedback
If I can keep this short-term plan consistent for 2 months, then I'll move on to step 4...
4 - SEMI-SHORT term plan:
* Start planning a fundraiser for a specific person/project that targets my interest. Givology provides several options of people/projects they help, each with their own description. The needs and amout of money vary, but are usually very small and attainable for an individual or small group. I would need to determine a START/END date and stick with it. I'm thinking a start by August could give me an end date for Christmas 2013.
IF (& that's a big BIG if) this goes well....then I've managed to stick to two plans and succeeded. I'm making a difference. And I might feel confident to do more.
5 - LONG term plan:
*These options include: taking an online internship through Givology, starting a local chapter, and/or getting my local school community involved in a bigger project.
What's awesome is, even if Step 4 is a success, but I don't feel ready to do a BIG project, then I can always repeat step 4 numerous times with several other small projects.
I have to hold myself accountable. I won't move onto the next step unless I have succesfully completed the smaller steps before. If I can't keep up with a weekly blog post or provide relevant feedback to an organization then my voice will not carry when I ask for help in a fundraiser.
And that's that...for now.