Responding to international disasters

One interesting thing about social media is how it takes a disaster like the earthquake and tsunami and Japan, and instantly personalizes it. Ten years ago I would have seen on the news, felt bad about, possibly made a donation (or not) and then put it out of my mind.  (Yes, maybe that makes me sound heartless, but ten years ago I was also young and poor).

But now, I see reminders everyday, and I think that is a good thing. I see updates from a friend living and working in Japan (and thankfully unharmed). I hear from friends who have family members in the country. I see people with no personal connection at all who are nonetheless touched by the tragedy and wanting to do their part to help.

My friend Helen posted today that as a horse owner & trainer, she suddenly found herself thinking about the animals affected by the tragedy and wants to do something to help them. She wrote about it on her blog and is donating $1 for every like her post gets, to a max of $200. Read about Helen, her commitment, and her new horse Lex, and like her post to help her help the animals in Japan.

Inspired by her idea, I will do the same here. Well, similar here. Having been caught up in stress over mortgage refinancing and renos, I have still not made a donation to the Red Cross to help Japan. I had intended to from the first moment I heard of the earthquake, yet have not gotten to it yet. I am a terrible preocrastinator, particularly when stressed, yet writing it out it now sounds so selfish. “I’m meant to donate, but I was busy.” Sometimes writing is not therapeutic at all, it seems.

So, my intent was to make a $100 donation. Following Helen’s lead, I will increase that donation by $1 (to a max of $200) for every like or comment on this post, by the end of the day (11:59 AST, March 18).

I’ve never done anything like this before, and have no idea how it will work. I have some misgivings. I don’t want it to come off as a crass attempt to get more readers. If you think that’s what it is, tell me. And don’t feel inclined to “like.” I just thought it sounded interesting and wanted to give it a try. And, for those of you who might like to donate but can’t afford it, you can like my post and Helen’s and know that someone else’s donation will increase as a result.


6 thoughts on “Responding to international disasters

  1. OK – apparently you have to be a blogger to see the “like” button. (My other blog is on and this is not an issue.) So if you can’t “like” it, leave a comment below.

  2. I suppose i ought to update, in case anyone is wondering. I hot more likes on Facebook than here, which was just as good. $125 was donated to the Red Cross a few weeks ago. Thanks all.

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