Home safe after travels to NY and Philly. Soon I hope to write about who I met and what I did over the last week.
However, I am currently thinking that the best way to end 2004 and start 2005 is to brainstorm about ways we (bloggers and academics, everyday folks) might help alleviate some of the suffering taking place on the other side of our planet as the death toll passes 120,000.
Certainly we should not hesitate to donate to aid organizations. I’m also thinking, though, that we might initiate something involving people getting together in their local communities for events that raise money, supplies, and awareness…something that would set in motion long-term efforts to help because the necessary recovery is going to take a long, long time.
I don’t have a solid suggestion to make right now, but on the flight home last night I was thinking:
- Musical performances in small clubs around the country involving local bands, proceeds to benefit relief efforts. Pick one night (or four, or more) in January and get bands in Kansas City, Washington D.C., Atlanta, Chicago, Seattle, Boston, and Philadelphia (to name just a few places) to put on a simultaneous benefit show.
- Readings in student centers, coffeehouses, bars, and clubs of the poetry, fiction, essays, or drama of writers from the countries affected by the earthquake and tsunamis. Charging money for admission or asking for donations.
- Showing the work of filmmakers from these countries. Charging money for admission or asking for donations.
Click on those links that allow you to donate online, certainly, but let’s do more that involves getting people together in person at the grass roots level. I don’t have all the answers, obviously, and I encourage further suggestions from you. Do you know someone in a working band, someone who owns a coffee shop, someone who manages a movie theater, someone who owns a club or a bar? Let’s make something happen.
Good ideas. I will be meeting some people later today who work at our uni’s international office, and will see what they say. Maybe we can do something on our campus. If we do, I’ll let you know.
Of course! The institutional resources of your average college or university are significant. I will look into this, too.