Cross-posted from EchoDitto
Monday is Dr. Martin Luther King Day. It’s a national Day of Service and a time to reflect on social justice. The crisis in Haiti brings extra focus and intensity to the question of how we care for each other. How did one of the world’s poorest countries struggle to survive just miles off the coast of Florida? Why does it require a massive earthquake for us to turn our attention to Haiti?
King wrote, “Every man [and woman] must decide whether he [or she] will walk in the creative light of altruism or the darkness of destructive selfishness. This is the judgment. Life’s persistent and most urgent question is ‘What are you doing for others?'”
We have been inspired by our friend and fellow technology geek Luke Montgomery. Three years ago, Luke asked himself that very question. He decided to build an orphanage, brick by brick for abandoned Haitian children with HIV/AIDS. And he looked to his online community and social media to help him do it through participatory fundraising on his website, WeCanBuildAnOrphanage.com. He raised enough funds to start a successful 10-bed orphanage in Jacmel, Haiti.
Luke is on his way back to Haiti. Because the infrastructure is in such bad shape, he’s planning to fly to the Dominican Republic and then make his way over a rocky and roadless mountain to get to Jacmel. He got some news this morning:
Our kids are alive but our orphanage was totally destroyed in the quake… but again, our 13 children have all survived. Somehow amidst all the death around them, these 13 orphans made it out of the rubble alive. They are now living on the street surrounded by rubble with no food, water, blankets or medicine. Many of them are HIV+. Two are handicapped and can not walk. We are rushing an emergency team to them to care for, feed and protect them. I’m leaving and will be on the ground in Haiti for as long as it takes to rebuild. We need your help. We lost everything.
We’re going to help out by renting a satellite phone for his trip. And we’re inviting you to join us by spreading the word about what Luke is doing. Share this link with your personal networks online (Facebook, Twitter, Email) to help put a face on the work that needs to be done in Haiti: http://tinyurl.com/ykt74rg
The cool part is that he’s a web geek like us so he’ll be blogging and sharing videos/photos so people can see exactly how donations are being spent. You can see the full story of the orphanage in Haiti here: https://wecanbuildanorphanage.com
For years it seemed like only moments of crisis — from natural disasters like Haiti to global warming — could unite us and our organizations in common purpose. But the connective tissues of technology seem to be taking hold in both charitable and corporate boardrooms alike. We’re seeing first-hand in our work across the climate, service, and veterans movements an unprecedented level of openness and collaboration.
Monday is Dr. Martin Luther King Day, a day of national and community service to remember his legacy. After years of working with leading organizations to support service, it’s a real privilege to join with them in a collaborative effort to build All for Good, a joint platform that makes service opportunities ubiquitous.
We’re proud to stand with so many of our clients and partners this weekend — Hands On Network, Do Something, Service Nation, The Huffington Post to name a few — in inviting you to join us in celebrating King Day as a day of service.
Click here to find an opportunity near you – and join us in using a day of service to reflect on Haiti and social justice: http://www.serve.gov/mlkday