Giving is a wonderful way to ground. Whether you are giving gifts from your garden, food from your kitchen or time out of your busy life. To give without expecting anything in return is heartwarming, soul-hugging and extraordinarily grounding.
When I was in grade twelve people always asked, “what do you want to do when you finish school?” I had two answers. Once came from my heart and the other- my ego.
“I either want to go and teach in a third world country or I want to be a make-up artist.” I’d reply with the indifference that afflicts teenage girls with scant life experience.
One of my choices was the hard road- a road that would put me in danger, make me uncomfortable, teach me things I didn’t necessarily want to learn. It was the road that despite the potholes, mudslides and thorns, would ultimately lift me up and show how fully a person could live life. My other choice was fun; a road padded with cotton balls, false lashes, and lip gloss thick enough to dive into. It was safe.
I suppose in the end, it was fear that led me to choose the safe road. So after a few experimental years in university, I packed up all of my belongings and drove off to Vancouver to learn how to be a part of the fakest, most demeaning industry humankind has ever created (perhaps a bit of an exaggeration…but not much).
I’m older now…and I still think about what it would have been like if I’d made a different choice. I don’t regret the decisions I made but I think the time has come to begin moving full circle. I may not at present be in a situation where I can just leave family, friends (and yes, my safe North American comforts) and live an ascetic life of servitude on the brink of humanity but I have the skills and means right here at home to make a difference in the lives of people who need and deserve it. The people who never got to make choices like I did…the girls who more than anything, need a means to the end of ignorance.
In two days there will be an event in my small town that is all about giving- The Souris Charity Bike Tour. This event raises money for a Canadian charity called 60 Million Girls.
60 million girls is a public foundation established in February 2006 by Wanda Bedard and a group of talented, creative and energetic women who strongly believe in the need to support education for girls in order to create a more just and balanced world.
On Saturday, our amazing participants will either bike 40 km, run 10 km or run/walk 5 km. They will arrive at our event with envelopes full of money, donated by generous friends and family. Then, when their tasks are completed and they’ve toweled off the worst of it- we’ll all celebrate with a town-wide BBQ! We’ve got so many wonderful volunteers and have found a great number of sponsors who share our vision- to make the world a better place. Saturday is going to be great!
I may not be in Africa or India or Central America yet, but right here from home I can make a difference. We can all make a difference in the lives of girls around the world and meaningfully investment in the future. Because we have so much, we can give…And giving is the ultimate way to ground.