A confession: I thrive on inspiration; I function better when I feel inspired and when I get to engage with others to talk about their inspiration. Luckily, my job at the United Nations Foundation inspires me every day, through the work we do and the stories of our partners and supporters. My job also gives me gives me opportunities to share my inspiration, and I know I am paying it forward, because that inspiration comes back to me from the amazing people, companies and organizations we work with to support the efforts of the United Nations to create a better world.
This month, I was particularly inspired by the support of 31 bloggers and their readers for Blogust, a first-of-its-kind blog relay hosted by the UN Foundation's Shot@Life campaign. By sharing their own inspiration, they helped immunize 10,000 children in developing countries against four of the most deadly, yet preventable diseases.
Here's how it worked: Blogust brought together 31 of the most influential online voices in the country to change the world through blogging. Each day throughout the month of August, one blogger posted about someone or something that inspires them and then passed the baton to another blogger for the following day. The bloggers asked their readers to comment on their posts, and each comment initiated a $20 donation, up to a total of $200,000, to immunize up to 10,000 children in a developing countries.
The response was amazing! These bloggers have incredible reach and amazing stories of inspiration, so of course their readers responded to the call and commented, commented, commented. With a couple days still left in the month, we reached our goal of 10,000 comments to protect 10,000 children. Nothing could be more inspiring than that.
I have bookmarked Blogust on my computer, so I can keep coming back to these posts when I need inspiration. As a mom, the post from Ana Flores (Spanglish Baby) is one of my favorites. Here is an excerpt:
Your comments in the last three and a half years have meant the world to me. You've been part of my girl's evolution as a bilingual princesa. You've held my virtual hand when it's gotten tough. We've laughed together at the nuances of our shared challenges. You've celebrated our triumphs. Now, I ask you to celebrate my daughter's life with a comment and a shout out to your friends to join the party. A simple "Feliz Cumpleaños" left in the comments below will not only light up Camila's face now and for the years to come when I show her this, but it will also become a $20 donation that will give one more kid a real Shot@Life.
(To watch a video with some of the best passages from the month, and for a good laugh, check out the final post from Jim Lin's Busy Dad Blog.)
Thank you all 31 bloggers and their readers who made a difference. Thank you for inspiring me, inspiring each other, and paying it forward, and most importantly, thank you for helping protect children by providing life-saving immunizations where they are needed most.
Follow Elizabeth Gore on Twitter: www.twitter.com/ElizabethGore