Sunday, June 25, 2017

Day 25: The $30 miracle

Today was a much better day than yesterday, and while there are still some uncertainties ahead, I have a renewed determination to finish strong. I packed up my remaining rations in a cooler and hit the road to Austin with my son Noah where we will be attending University of Texas orientation sessions, as he will be a freshman there this fall.  It's been nice to break up the routine and cook dinner in a new setting tonight. I still have no idea how tomorrow is going to work, as we need to be up at 6:30am and it's now 11:30pm and I barely have any kind of plan for breakfast or lunch. It might be cold rice and beans. Life goes on...

Noah is a national debate champion, literally. He just got back from the national debate championship tournament and had an outstanding record. So I picked his brain about the challenge, as we had plenty of time to talk.

He agrees that most Westerners feel that their small charitable contribution won't make a difference and so they don't bother to take action. He is on some emerging social media platforms and says there's an account where someone is giving advice on simplification and living a minimalistic lifestyle, and that they have over 700k followers. We discussed the point that this influencer and my blog here are both helping to emphasize that even 30 cents can can be utilized, with creativity, to make a delicious meal. 

We then revisited the story from my Day 15 blog entry, where my friend Hudson in India demonstrated that with just 30 cents (20 Rupees), he was able to make a delicious egg scramble masala with two large pieces of chapathi flatbread. This, along with evidence of what 30 cents would buy you in Manila, Philippines, as reported by my staff there, proves that there is "purchasing power parity" on basic food staples in at least these two locations we polled.

So the overall point is that your $1 donation, especially when coupled with produce from our farmlands, is more than enough to provide three meals for a hungry child in need. Three meals. To children like this girl at our girls home rescued from "bonded servitude" (modern day slavery) in India... 

One of the most frequent comments about the meals I cook during the challenge is, "Wow that actually looks pretty good, I'd eat that!" And this is my favorite entry to discussion about the challenge. That is exactly my strongest point.

Imagine if I were to supplement my ingredients list with fresh vegetables from a farmland or gardening project? Bingo. That is the work of Peace Gospel and She Has Hope right there. We are multiplying your generosity, no matter how small your contribution may feel to you. 

So, literally, a $30/mo recurring donation will put a delicious fresh-cooked meal on one child's plate, three times a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year. By buying basic inexpensive staples such as rice, beans, and potatoes, then combining them with fresh produce from our farms and gardens, we can work miracles with your humble, consistent contribution, no matter how small. 

Great news today on my charitable goal! A very generous soul stepped forward to sponsor the $53/mo heart, while we also saw another friend reject indifference, committing to $10/mo, which brings us just $35/mo within reach of the $54/mo heart! Also, traffic to the blog has skyrocketed, yesterday seeing over 300 readers! This means you all are really doing great getting the word out as we head into the final stretch. Thank you so much!

The goal of filling the next 20 hearts below in just five days seems impossible, but I am very convinced that if we all work together, and everyone signs up for whatever monthly amount they can afford, no matter how small, we can do this!

This is what the first part of the "heart-chart" looks like currently... progress!

Charitable goal explanation. For those of you just tuning in, I'll recap what I'm trying to achieve with the "Monthly Donor Heart-Chart" and my goal of finding 50 new sponsors for these "hearts" which I like to think of as representing lives being transformed and, ultimately, saved.

Why am I seeking monthly donors? The orphan care, child labor response, and human trafficking response programs we've pioneered at Peace Gospel and She Has Hope— while sustained in part by small business enterprise— need charitable support to be fully sustained. The budgets of these programs have fixed, monthly expenses. Thus, while one-time donations are deeply appreciated, it's the monthly donations that give us something to count on and plan with. Therefore, long-term, they're the most powerful.

If you're willing to make a small monthly sacrifice of any amount to help ensure that the following merciful actions are fully funded each month, I would be grateful for your partnership with me in this effort. With your help, our monthly budget enables us to…
  • Provide resident care for 290 orphans in 11 homes in Asia and Africa
  • Operate 4 schools and 4 after-school care programs reaching over 1000 children
  • Serve approx. 50,000 fresh meals to children in our programs
  • Train 100s of girls how to avoid the dangers of human trafficking
  • House, rehabilitate and empower 20 girls recovering from human trafficking

On to what I was able to create with just $1 worth of food today. I am very aware of the fact that I'm getting repetitive in my meal choices, but with as little time as I have on my hands, I'm happy to make something that I know will taste good and be satisfying. Still, I'm trying my best to mix things up slightly with each meal.

Click or tap on image to enlarge...




Take Action!

1) Please consider helping me reach my goal to find 50 new "Sustainers"— donors willing to give a small amount each month toward our work helping vulnerable children and trafficking survivors. Learn more and sign up here!

2) Please visit my unofficial sponsor, through this link. 7% of your purchases made through the link are given to the work of Peace Gospel's programs helping orphans, at-risk children of the slums, and human trafficking survivors.

3) If you're compelled by my effort here, please share it with friends. One of the main goals is awareness. So if you can help with that, huge.

4) Leave me feedback. Please comment on this post, especially if you have any ideas about what I should try to cook with these ingredients I have available. I love hearing from you! It really helps!