You’re Never Too Young
A lie we often tell ourselves is that we are too young to make a difference in the world.
At 25 years old, you might expect that I have grown out of the lie, but I still catch myself believing it.
The lie allows us to abdicate our responsibility. We shrug off making a difference, because we are “powerless” to do anything; We “have no influence” on the course of human history. Believing the lie allows us to stand idle, waiting for someone else to put in motion the solutions to the world’s problems.
Unfortunately, it’s not true. No one is too young to make a difference.
In December, I had the privilege of meeting the students of Carseland School, and encouraging them as they fund-raised in support of World Vision’s Gift Catalogue. As I stood in the school gym, waiting for the students to come in, I started talking with Mrs. Wade, the teacher that invited me to the school. She told me the origin of the fundraiser and how it all started with her young son, Oliver.
The previous year, Mrs. Wade and Oliver were sitting at a table in their local coffee shop, when Oliver noticed a World Vision gift catalogue sitting on their table. As Oliver flipped through the glossy pages and looked at the pictures of chickens, goats, and cows that could go towards helping people around the world, he was filled with a desire to make a difference. Mrs. Wade told me, “He knew bottles made money, so he started a bottle drive, encouraging all of his friends to help with the project.” That year, Oliver was able to raise enough money to reach his goal of purchasing a goat and a chicken for a family affected by extreme poverty.
This year, Mrs. Wade returned to work at Carseland School. Hoping to teach her students to be global citizens, she remembered Oliver’s successful Gift Catalogue campaign, and decided to hold a fundraiser for her students. So far this year, their Change for Change project has raised over 400$. Oliver held another bottle drive and was able to contribute 140$.
No one told Oliver he was too young to make a difference. The students at Carseland School didn’t believe the lie that they were too young to affect change. As a result, families around the world will benefit from their generous gifts through the World Vision Gift Catalogue.
In the following years, the “starve-in” became an annual, international fundraiser known as the 30 Hour Famine. Every year, young people in 15 different countries who have rejected the lie that they can’t make a difference forego food to empathize and support those around the world that lack food security.
You are never to young too young to make an impact in the world. Stop waiting for someone to tell you it’s your turn to make a difference. The time is now to help.
ON TOUR FOR A HUNGERFREE WORLD
Sean and Karli Quigley believe in music of hope, so it just made sense to partner with HungerFree. The duo, which hails from Winnepeg, Manitoba in Canada, fronts band Bold As Lions. And this February they’re going on a HungerFree tour.
HungerFree sat down with Sean and Karli to learn more.
HungerFree: Why are you dedicating your tour to HungerFree?
Bold As Lions: We believe in this. From the beginning we’ve always said that we want to make music that means something. When we’re in the studio, writing, every single word is thought out and has an important purpose in the song. What good is having a platform if you don’t use it for something productive, if you don’t use it to better someone else’s reality? That is why we’re donating our time and dedicating this tour to HungerFree. This is something we stand for as a band. When people think Bold As Lions we want them to think HungerFree. We want people to know that its cool to care. And here’s a great place to start.
HF: How did you first get connected with World Vision?
BAL: When the Little Drummer boy music video came out, it gained attention over night. One day I [Sean] was driving down Broadway in Winnipeg and I got a phone call from someone asking me if I wanted to travel across the world to play music…all of this before he even told me who he was! It turns out his name is Devon and he worked for World Vision. 3 weeks later I ended up in a couple countries called Georgia and Armenia that border Iran. From that point on, we’ve been working with World Vision with the artist Collective, but mostly with the youth team. Speaking or playing music in schools and churches on behalf of World Vision and our passion to see a better world.
HF: What of the HungerFree message and approach inspires you most?
BAL: We love the idea of branding it as HungerFree. It’s an idea that students can get behind. Hunger Free sounds positive; it sounds possible! The model that World Vision has laid out is probably one of our favourite things about it. The way they will stay in one community until they are totally self-sufficient and then move on to the next – it’s a legit way to end hunger. It’s an ACTUAL solution and it isn’t that far off. Whenever we talk to people about this, their reaction is always my favourite because they seem so surprised that it’s so thought out and you can see skeptics thinking up a storm about how this just might work.
HF: What has been the response to working with World Vision and HungerFree so far?
BAL: Working with HungerFree so far has had such a great response; it’s becoming a term people are using just by seeing it continually branded as the HungerFree tour on our social media. Schools have been excited about getting involved. Currently we have a 20 school reach in the month of February and still more requests and responses coming in. Unfortunately for some dates, multiple people have wanted to book a spot on the tour and we’ve had to turn them away, which is a good problem to have!
HF: What advice do you have for young people who are interested in connecting their passion and talents to making a difference in the world?
BAL: This is something I really feel makes all the difference. If you aren’t passionate about something, you aren’t going to put everything into it. The things you do with your time, life, and resources really show where your heart is. For us, because we are passionate about music, doing this tour – putting in hundred of hours, late nights, little sleep, doing all the booking, editing, writing, speaking, producing, programming – makes it all worth it. It doesn’t seem like work because we love it.
Some advice that we would give young people who are interested in doing this? What do you love? Start there. Start with your passion and then pick a cause that you care about. When those two things mix, you have to succeed. So you love to snowboard? Enter every snowboard competition and donate the winnings. You love math? Have a mathlete competition and donate the funds! Trust me, any time you put yourself second to someone else, people think its weird and want to hear about it. It doesn’t take too much selflessness to start spreading awareness.
TAKE PART IN CREATING A HUNGERFREE WORLD TOGETHER THROUGH
A #Hungerfree World is Possible
We have a dream that one day, we’ll live in a hunger-free world.
A world where children don’t have to worry about food, but can instead focus on learning and growth.
A world where there are no hunger statistics because there is no hunger.
A world where sharing a meal becomes an act of joy because food is secure.
Between now and World Food Day (Friday, October 16) – you’re invited to join others all over the world and double-up for a hunger-free world.
What does that mean, you ask?
First, celebrate food and everything it represents.
Between now and World Food Day, find moments to share good food with good people. Gather around the table together to eat and be merry.
Your celebration could take any form you like. Maybe it’s a dinner at your favourite restaurant or sharing pizza with your family while watching the sunset. Maybe it’s gathering a few close friends together for brunch or hosting a themed dinner party in your home.
Then, help others by ‘doubling up’ and donating the cost of your meal to launch HungerFree so that others can celebrate food too.
Match the amount of money you and your friends spent on the meal and donate it to the HungerFree movement. For example, if you bought $30 of pizza to share, give $30 to HungerFree! Check out the video to learn more about how HungerFree will fight hunger and how you can join.
After your meal, keep the party going by sharing moments from your meal online. Post the recipe, share a photo of the appetizer, take a selfie with your entire dinner party. Just make sure to use #hungerfree.
In the coming weeks, we’ll give you plenty of resources to make doubling up as fun as can be. Keep an eye out for tips on hosting, challenges, stories, and more.
This is one food party you don’t want to miss out on. Join HungerFree, and let’s make our dream of a hunger-free world a reality.
30 Hour Famine Fundraising Superstar
Become a 30 Hour Famine Fundraising Superstar
If you’ve decided to participate on the 30 Hour Famine, you’ve just joined the fight against one of the greatest challenges of our generation.
Hunger and malnutrition still plague our planet. In fact, each day 18,000 children die from preventable causes. This needs to stop. Your fundraising efforts in the 30 Hour Famine are a critical part of changing the tide on this.
We’ve compiled a list of the very best tips for maximizing your fundraising efforts. With a commitment to follow through and a bit of creativity, your leveled up fundraising skills can literally change lives.
- Make sure you’ve registered online at http://famine.ca – Many supporters have found they can raise more than twice as much online over offline.
– The 30 Hour Famine is always a better experience with others, so many sure you’ve registered online under the right team, or if you don’t have one, create a team and invite your friends.
- Commit to an audacious but achievable fundraising goal – If you’ve done the famine in the past, you’re a pro, aim for higher impact this year.
– Try to think through the number of people who will need to donate in order for you to reach your goal. For example, raising $500 is not as hard as it may seem. When you break it down it can be as simple as asking 25 people to donate $20 each. Here’s the impact some smaller fundraising amounts actually make. Share this with your supporters!
On top of that, this year with our partnership with the World Food Programme your funds will multiple 3x in value. Imagine the impact you can have together!
- Customize your fundraising page – Share briefly what you’re giving up and why this matters to you.
– Upload a powerful video or images such as a shot of you when you visited a developing country, or an impact video with statistics you came across, or even a silly image of what you’ll be giving up for 30 hours.
– Create your own 15-second video and join our #WhyImFasting challenge.
- Create fundraising momentum – It starts with you – don’t share a page with $0 raised, put some skin in the game and donate to your famine fundraiser first, or ask a family member to be the first to pitch in.
– Email or text the link to your closest 10-15 people. These should be people who will be highly likely to chip in because of your connection to them. Tell them why their support matters to you, and that their donations will begin a fundraising trend.
– Direct message your next 10 – 50 people. Wait a day or two, and bring your next inner circle of people on board. You may want to enlist family members or mentors to also help share your link and fundraise for you at this stage.
– Social Media. As you’ve got some momentum get the word out on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram, make sure to include your direct fundraising link. Don’t be afraid to directly tag people and ask for support. People can’t do anything about what they don’t know about.
- Share updates and add fuel to your efforts – Share with people your total amount raised regularly and how much more you need to reach your goal.
– Give people who’ve donated shout outs on social media. For those who aren’t on social media be sure to still find a way to thank them.
– Purchase or create your own famine t-shirt, change your social media profile image, let people everywhere know that this is serious to you.
– Don’t be afraid to get creative with rewards to drive larger donations – it could be anything from extra chores, to sharing a special talent that you have, to head shavings!
– Share any images or videos you find as you’re learning about hunger with your supporters while sharing your fundraising link – be a persistent voice of why ending hunger matters.
- Engage people on the day of your Famine – Let people know this is your big day.
– Ask people to sponsor each of your 30 Hours. Give them a mention on social media as you dedicate each hour to them.
– Do a final push for donations from those who may have forgotten and didn’t think you were going to follow through
– Share a video or an image of yourself when you complete your 30th hour – you did it!
- Wrap up – Collect any cash donations that may have also been committed. *Document it in your fundraising page by going to Fundraising –> Enter Cash / Pay Online section of your page so that people can receive tax reciepts. You may need an adult with a credit card in order to process it online.
– Mail in any cheques that are written out to World Vision Canada. You can find our address here: http://yourmovement.ca/act/30-hour-famine/faq/
– Thank your supporters for their tremendous help in changing the lives of children around the world.
If you manage to commit to these 7 steps, you are now officially a #FamineSuperstar!
Why I’m Fasting
*Update: #WhyImFasting just got better! Head on over to yconic and submit your 30 Hour Famine #WhyImFasting video for a chance to win up to $1000 to fund a project that you are passionate about. Is it hunger and food related issues? Child slavery? Education for girls? No matter what it is, Yconic wants to help. Submit your video and have your friends vote for yours today. Make sure you hashtag #WhyImFasting and #yFundUs.
We all have that one things that makes us itch; something that sets us on edge and makes us question why things happen the way they do.
At World Vision Youth Canada, we reject the fact that things are how they are because that’s “how they’ve always been done.” We won’t stand for taking everything at face value because we are a movement committed to making our lives count. We all have our reasons to rise up and instigate change: this is ours.
Why am I fasting? Find out.
How do you get involved?
Use your voice and share your story. Why are you doing the 30 Hour Famine?
– Take your phone and record a 15 second video answering the question “Why am I fasting?”.
– Then upload it to Facebook, Twitter or Instagram and hashtag #WhyImFasting.
– You can tag us on Facebook, Twitter – @30HRFamine and Instagram – @wvyouthcanada
Don’t forget to hashtag #WhyImFasting
Looking for different things to give up other than food? Check out all the other ways to experience the famine!
Experience the Famine Your Way
If you haven’t signed up for the 30 Hour Famine yet, go now!
Join the famine!
Before anything else…
All humans have basic needs. However not all of humanity has their basic needs met.
I live in a country which provides me freely with anything I could possibly need, not to mention anything I want. I am so thankful, yet I feel so undeserving. I can’t seem to understand why I was born to such luxuries when a woman who is my equal over land and seas lays hungry, motionless, last breaths filling her lungs as she slowly inhales and exhales. Hunger.
To me, that is not right.
Someone once told me: “When we admit our passions, we are free.” I believe this to be true because it’s from this point we can move and lead from a place of passion.
I’ve been dreaming about what the world would look like if we began to become a people who desire change within justice so deeply that we became that change.
By simply listening to the heart, we can understand that we have been created with a purpose. Our lives are too short to simply live to survive so follow the silly ideas and shift nations.
Today I had the pleasure of listening to Ruth Roberts share her heart. She is the founder of the 30 Hour Famine. She is a woman who believes in change so deeply, she was moved to be the change she wanted to see. She and some friends saw a television clip of a famine in Ethiopia, at first she thought it was a silly idea to host a famine in order to experience what her equals were experiencing around the world but regardless of how an idea sounds, it’s always worth sharing.
That year, she raised $25.00 to help end world hunger. It made a difference.
Today the 30 Hour Famine raises an unbelievable amount of money annually to see the end of world hunger. It makes a difference.
It all started with a ‘silly idea’.
You my friend are not living for the sake of living, you’re living because there’s a passion inside of you that you can change the world with. Be the change you want to see in the world, admit your passions, and challenge the status quo with your brilliance!
Please join me in standing for the end of world hunger, sign up to make a difference. Find more information here: famine.ca