Friday, June 30, 2017

Day 30: A bitter-sweet finish line

Tonight marks the end of my challenge. But for millions, it goes on. 

It's bitter sweet. 

On the one hand I'm happy that we raised $1,462 in new monthly donations through the "heart-chart" and that when we annualize these, they will equal $17,376/year. As discussed in my previous blog entries, thanks to purchaing power parity on most staple ingredients, combined with the fresh produce we grow on our farms and in our gardening projects, this funding will provide approximately 52,000 nutritious fresh-cooked meals for hungry orphans, child labor victims, and girls in recovery from human trafficking who are under our care. Happy about this, and in wonder of how it's even possible? Yes. No doubt.

However, I'm sad that I missed my goal by so far. I was trying to reach $2,753 in new monthly support that our programs desperately need. So we missed it by $1,291/mo, or in our "Monthly Donor Heart-Chart" lingo, we missed it by only the next 16 open hearts on the chart. Yet 34 hearts were in fact filled during the challenge, and for that I am extremely grateful. 

It does sadden and confuse me why we, along with other worthy charities, struggle so much to find adequate funding to keep our programs running. Even this month I'm short of our target just to meet our basic bare-bones minimum operating budget, and at our recent giving levels I will soon be faced with the morbid responsibility of choosing which programs to cut, which means children will go away hungry and without the security and education we provide them.

I dedicate day 30 to those who have no day 31, and who often miss meals or get by on just one meal a day. To mothers who have to listen to their children cry because of hunger, and for all the orphans who have no mothers to cry to when they're hungry. 

Sorry for such a downer final post, but this is where I am. I do hope it will get better, and that in the days and months ahead the heart-chart will slowly be filled up with more and more love. Thank you for following along, and thank you to all who stood up and took action to help me reach my charitable goal, even when you perhaps felt like your small contribution wouldn't make a difference. That's courage, that's faith, that's love. 

Thank you. Good night.

On to how I was able to get by on just $1 worth of food today. Click or tap on image to enlarge...



My friend Anita, chef and owner of Pondicheri, was kind enough to prepare my 89th meal of the challenge, using about 33 cents worth of ingredients: lentils, rice, carrots, a few peanuts, and an egg. Amaaaazing! Thank you, Anita!

Final "Meal"

Dedicated to all those who miss meals not for dieting, fasting, or traveling, but because they simply cannot afford to eat. I stand with you tonight.

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