When I tell people I’m a blogger, I get the strangest looks . Let me set the record straight….
A blogger is a writer who coordinates conversations and facilitates feedback.
A blogger is a businessperson whose currency is relationships, likes, and follows and an occasional dollar or two.
A blogger shares thoughts, opinions, and information on topics they are passionate about.
There are mom bloggers (My Brown Baby, Creating Motherhood,Mom to the Screaming Masses, Girl’s Gone Child) and dad bloggers (Mocha Dad); bloggers who share their talents (Lucrecer) and bloggers who help others develop theirs (Handmade Charlotte, One Good Thing By Jillee). There are bloggers who inspire (My Mamihood, Chloe of the Mountain, Latina On A Mission); bloggers who encourage (Sassafrass); and bloggers who give a voice to those who can’t speak for themselves (Squidalicious, Love That Max).
That is exactly what happened recently in Washington D.C. when the UN Foundation hosted me and 14 other bloggers (mentioned above), designating us as 2014 Global Issues Fellows, and setting us on an incredible journey of discovery. We were brought together by our participation with Shot@Life and their Blogust campaign. Our posts for Blogust brought attention to the need for worldwide vaccines and resulted in over 36,000 shots being donated. Talk about making a difference. We saved lives!!! How could we ever top that?
Well, the UN Foundation knew that if they gave us more information, we would want to continue the conversation. That is exactly why bloggers matter. We are masters at creating awareness, telling stories, and promoting action.
The UN Foundation is an international organization connecting people, ideas, and resources to help the United Nations solve global problems and create a better world. It currently oversees 14 different worldwide campaigns and initiatives that focus on global health, women and population, energy and climate change, and advocating for the United Nations.
A consistent theme throughout the two days was that LOCAL ISSUES= GLOBAL ISSUES. No matter where you live, everyone talks about the same stuff: themselves, their community and the world. Because everyone is having the same conversations, activism and concern at the local level is interchangeable with activism and concern on the global level.
It is one of those parenting privileges that we take for granted. But not in Mozambique. Mothers there won’t name their children until after they get vaccinated. Why? Because the threat of their babies dying before they have access to shots is too great. Any mother’s grief grieves me. Why wouldn’t I want to help these mothers?
As my grandchildren grow, my hope for them is to live full, healthy lives. Why wouldn’t I want the same for children in Nigeria or Pakistan or Afghanistan (the only countries that still have polio outbreaks) or for the children in 97 countries that are threatened by malaria?
Ted Turner founded the UN Foundation in 1998 and serves as its Chairman today. He said, “You do not have to be a world leader – or even a billionaire – to make an impact. If we are going to turn things around, we all need to do our part to make it happen. Change starts with you.”
Changing the world sounds overwhelming but it doesn’t have to be. It can be as simple as:
1) Donating a Photo. Sponsored by Johnson and Johnson, every picture you share means a $1.00 donation to your chosen charity like Shot@Life
2) Taking the My World Global Survey. The United Nations wants to know how you want your future world to look.
3) Volunteering. Offer whatever you can to be part of the solution.
4) Like Shot@Life on Facebook. It is the easiest way to stay informed on global health issues.
I am a blogger. I write to inform, to create awareness, to tell stories and to promote action. That is how I make a difference and why my work matters. I invite you to make a difference too. The world is counting on you.
Which action step are you going to do today?