Relevant is Helping Haitians

24 January 2010

Last year, Relevant Magazine launched Reject Apathy, a movement “dedicated to spurring this generation to sacrificial, sustainable social engagement.” Reject Apathy offers a web site filled with articles on a variety of issues as well as a weekly email newsletter and a regular digital magazine.

In the wake of the Haiti earthquake, the Relevant team decided they needed to put their money where their mouth is and made the following announcement:

To immediately help the devastation in Haiti, right now RELEVANT is giving half of every dollar from new subscriptions to World Vision’s emergency relief efforts. By subscribing to RELEVANT, you’ll stay connected to what God is doing in our generation. By subscribing right now, you’ll tangibly help those in need. Please join us.

What? A one year subscription costs $15. That means that Relevant Magazine will give $7.50 from every subscription to benefit World Vision’s Haiti relief effort. Relevant is choosing to lose money to help people in Haiti. Relevant was already one of my favorite magazines. This just pushes them further up in my esteem.

Watch the announcement from Relevant Magazine founder and publisher, Cameron Strang.

If you’ve never subscribed to Relevant Magazine, take the opportunity now, when you not only get a great magazine but you help people. You won’t be disappointed in either account. If you already subscribe, consider buying a subscription for a friend. They will thank you.

Subscribe today and bring hope and relief to the people of Haiti.


Quick update

22 January 2010

A downpour fills a 10,000 gallon tank

10,000 gallon tank in the rain

Greetings, fellow travelers. I just wanted to post a quick update. I’ll post something more substantial soon. Good news is that our friend Whitney, who is studying in Australia, will be in Uganda until February 21, so I should get a chance to connect with her while I’m there. It’ll be nice to “run into” some one from home.

I got my shots yesterday. My arms are sore from five different injections, but I haven’t had any of the potential side effects I was warned about. Between the vaccines and the anti-malarial drugs we’re talking $600. Hopefully my insurance will cover all or most of the cost. Now I need to find the time to do some trip shopping in the next two weeks.

The really big news to share is that we’ve surpassed my support goal. I’m totally floored by that. When I decided to go I was most concerned about the funding. We knew we couldn’t afford it ourselves, but in about a month and a half we raised $4000. There were a few large donations, but most of it was small donations from a wide range of people. Thank you.

A Ugandan boy fills a jug with clean water

This is why

If you meant to send a donation but haven’t yet, you’re not too late. You can still send donations to Ugandan Water Project at Ugandan Water Project, 1748 Rochester St, Lima, NY 14485. Donations will be used for special projects while we’re in Uganda and to help any team members who are short on their support.

You can also make donations to me directly by clicking the “Donate” button on the support page or in the column to the right. This money will go towards my extra expenses and supplies I need for the trip.

If you’d like to donate a soccer ball, I’m looking for either new or good condition size 5 soccer balls. Contact me if you want to donate a ball or two or ten. You can also send me a donation online or give it to me in person. Just note that it’s for soccer balls.

Matthew Paul Turner has been in Uganda this week with World Vision, and he’s posted some great reflections and video from his trip. You should read his Uganda Week posts.

As I said, I’ll post a more detailed update in the next few days. Thank you for your support and prayers. The next two weeks are crucial. There’s a lot to do to get ready and the stress and pressure will be high. If you pray, I’d appreciate if you’d remember me, my family and the team.

We’re changing the world people.


Food for the Hungry

15 January 2010

Help Food for the Hungry respond in Haiti.
I’m not going to say much. Food for the Hungry is one of the relief organizations we support. If you’re looking to aid the rescue, recovery and rebuilding efforts, consider supporting Food for the Hungry.

We had good news from them today. All their staff in Haiti are safe and accounted for, and the director of their Emergency Response Unit landed safely in Port-au-Prince today. Please pray for their efforts to bring, aid, comfort and hope.


Urgent: Helping the People of Haiti

13 January 2010

USGS map of Haiti quakeBy now you’ve heard about the magnitude 7.0 earthquake that struck Haiti yesterday. Already one of the poorest countries in the world, Haiti’s infrastructure is lacking in good times so the impact on Haiti’s buildings, roads and other services we take for granted is unbelievable. With the dawn of Wednesday, Haitians are just beginning to asses the damage and loss of life. I can’t stress how critical the situation is. Haiti’s first lady says much of the capital is in ruins.

The United States, other governments and world organizations have already pledged support. There are aid groups which were already functioning in Haiti prior to the quake who are now turning their efforts towards bringing relief and rescue. Below is a partial list of reputable relief groups who already have staff on the ground or are mobilizing their emergency response teams. Most of us can’t hop on a plane and head to Haiti, but we can provide funding for those who do. Please consider supporting their efforts.

Red Cross
Food for the Hungry
World Vision
Compassion International
Catholic Relief Services
Salvation Army
World Relief

May God’s grace and peace be with the people of Haiti and the men and women who are rushing into the breach to bring aid and relief.


Uganda Week

7 January 2010

You probably already realize that Matthew Paul Turner is one of my favorite authors. I read his blog and follow him on Twitter as well, which can be a lot of fun. He likes to live tweet televised awards shows, and his appreciation for Carrie Underwood is unrivaled (and easily forgiven). Matthew is witty, challenging, wry, snarky, often edging on inappropriate but with good intentions and just laugh out loud funny.

Matthew is going to Uganda with World Vision, and he’ll be blogging the trip. Follow Uganda Week You can follow him during Uganda Week starting January 17.

Since I’m going to Uganda in a month, I’m really looking forward to following his trip, reading his thoughts and seeing how he handles being away from his wife and young son for a couple weeks. I always appreciate his insights on life and culture, so I’m thrilled at the chance to “see” Uganda through his eyes.

Matthew is part of the Ugandan convergence I discovered when I first announced I was going. I found so many people through my extended network of friends and family who have been to Uganda or are going to Uganda soon. I took it as confirmation that I made the right decision to go there now.

I highly recommend following Matthew’s journey during Uganda Week at his blog beginning January 17. You can help spread the word by posting a link to his blog on your Facebook page, adding a Uganda Week button to your blog or tweeting or retweeting links to the posts using the #UgandaWeek and #WorldVision hash tags.

Whatever you do, follow Uganda Week starting January 17.


Going to Uganda 2010

5 January 2010

Happy new year. I’m hitting the ground running (for my life) with lots to do at home, at work and for the trip. Thought I’d post a quick update on the trip.

So my overall goal is to raise $4000, and I’m 75% of the way there, thanks in large part to many of you. I am very grateful for your support. I’ve had everything from large donations to a nickel dropped in my donation bucket. Cool, huh?!

If you have been planning to support me financially, you still can. Checks made out to Ugandan Water Project can be given to me directly or sent to Ugandan Water Project, 1748 Rochester St, Lima, NY 14485. You can also donate online. It’s easy and secure. Make sure to reference that you are donating towards my trip.

The whole rainwater collection tank idea is taking off. A couple weeks before Christmas, a hair salon in Rochester decided to fund a tank. That gives our team the chance to celebrate with the village that will get the tank. Since then, three more tanks have been funded. That is just incredible.

To end on a Uganda related note, author/blogger Matthew Paul Turner is going to Uganda with World Vision. He’s leaving January 14 and will be blogging the trip beginning January 17. You can follow his trip at his blog Jesus Needs New PR. Matthew is one of my favorite writers and cultural critics. Reading his Twitter feed during televised awards shows is side-splitting. I highly recommend Matthew’s book Churched, and I’m very confident that the follow up, Hear No Evil, will be stellar as well. Please be aware that his stuff is NSFPN (not safe for preconceived notions).

Thank you for supporting me and Ugandan Water Project. We’re changing the world, people.