Until now, I've only provided text asking you to donate to my birthday campaign. Now, I've created a video explaining things a bit more. If a picture's worth a thousand words, how much is a video worth? Hopefully about $4000.
My birthday has come and gone this year. I'm quite thankful. I'm thankful to be able to type this. Frankly, I'm thankful to be alive. I was hit by a car while cycling in September of 2012 and it damn near cost me my life. My parents flew out to NYC from KC almost immediately after they found out to be by my side and lend their support. I believe their positive energy combined with the unrelenting support of the people whose lives I've touched over the years turned the tides in my favor.
I've been thinking a lot about this upcoming birthday and how I'd like to celebrate. The thought of water doesn't cease to enter that mental fray. It took the graciousness of a very kind nurse to break protocol and allow me to suck water from a damp rag while still in the hospital. This was a well-defined "no-no" for someone still in ICU like me, recovering from a traumatic brain injury and only recently conscious from a 5-week coma. My memory of that time is foggy, but the memory of those few sips of water is crystal clear.
I joined the Peace Corps in 2007 and went to Bolivia where I worked alongside some of the highest quality people this country has to offer. My task was to coordinate the drilling and implementation of manual water wells for small villages well south of La Paz. The elevation was approximately 13,000 feet so it was tricky, but seeing the looks on those people's faces when they got water made it worth it. After the accident, I got a taste of that feeling myself.
I'm still going to therapy and I'm certainly not the person I once was. I'm better now. My thinking is clearer and the perspective I've been granted is truly profound. Because of that, I'm asking you to help me give the gift of water to folks that don't have easy access to sinks and drinking fountains like we do now.
I'm asking for my age in dollars from everyone I know. Every penny of the money raised will directly fund clean water projects in developing countries. Even better, charity: water will show us exactly which projects we funded once they've been fully completed (which takes about 18 months). That means we'll know the locations and names of the communities we helped. This is a fact. I know because I interned with charity: water and I've seen it done firsthand.
My goal is to give water to those who desperately need it, but my real mission will be completed if this campaign gives you the briefest of pause to be thankful for the things you likely pay no mind. Please donate to my birthday campaign and do it to it, children of light!