Over 23 days, despite mobilization of an international team to one of the planet's most remote locations and efforts to herd them out, an estimated 50 whales would die, largely of exposure, in the Loza Lagoon.
When volunteers get the meaning and see the value and results from volunteerism, they increase rather than decrease their time. Doing make-work, being used inefficiently and having no yard stick to measure success are all factors."
This school used to be a plastic bottle. This school also used to be an empty chip bag, a coffee cup and a candy wrapper. In fact, it used to be a whole village full of inorganic trash that littered the streets and clogged the rivers.
It is serious, deadly, and frightening -- both in what is going on under the ocean surface, and the lack of laws and controls to protect whales, dolphins, and other animals.
They inspire awe, because they're magnificent, massive, beautiful, powerful, and mysterious. Like giant sequoias but mammals -- like us, except on a prehistoric, mythological, global scale. Everything about them is huge -- their size, their sounds, their range, their strength, their history.
As we approach Pro Bono Week, it is critical that we address the big social sector questions. How do we build capacity? How do we ensure quality and impact? How do we become sustainable?
What we have in the philanthropic industry is an ability to identify what are the problems, but no imaginative ideas for how they can be addressed. Great people, great intentions, but the results will not arrive.
Serendipity does sometimes smile upon me, and it did a few months ago when I was on a tossing, rolling tin motorboat on the roiling South Pacific off the Austral island of Rurutu in French Polynesia, looking for whales.
Volunteers are and will remain the backbone of our movement. At Girl Scouts, we are innovating new ways to reach and engage the adults who will help us create the next generation of female leadership in America.
Depending upon what you enjoy doing, you can combine travel and volunteering in virtually any part of the world. Here's one suggestion for people who like to drive, take beautiful walks, be dazzled by nature and world-class views, relish peace and quiet, and seriously love animals.
Without my Social Security check arriving on the third Wednesday of the month, I would probably be dead... and I certainly wouldn't have been able to finance my first documentary. This is a cautionary tale, about being "one bad thing away."
1. Seeing the Grand Canyon for the first time ...
Supporting fundraisers is a great way teach your children the concepts of charity and volunteerism. It is also an important way of reinforcing money lessons in the real world that will last a lifetime.
When in doubt, forget all the rules, the seven- or nine- or 50-point lists, the how-to guides and the self-help books, the therapeutic techniques, the TED talks, the recipes and formulas... and just love.
In December 2008 Credit Default Swaps (CDS) were all the range. Everywhere you looked in finance there was talk about this company on the verge of collapse or that institution about to go under.
At times like this, I am still proud of our country, and when people ask me how I can feel this way, I always tell them "look local." If you just think about the good, hardworking Americans you know, it will make you feel better.