Friday, January 15, 2010

10 Things to do with your Angst about Haiti - Barry Schuler's Synapsis

10 Things to do with your Angst about Haiti

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We all know that the tragedy in Haiti is horrendous. I have been there and it was a very challenged country before the seismic devastation.

The angst about it in the Twittersphere is palpable. Watching @AlisonRosen seeking counsel from @LisaLikes on her UStream show was but a small example.

So here are a few tips on how to #dosomething and be a good citizen.

1. Donate Smart Money not dumb money. Don't blindly text a donation to make you feel good. Many are scams.

2. Money is not usually the most important resource initially. The US Government has now arrived with food, water and emergency shelter and heavy equipment.

3. If you feel compelled to donate money call the Red Cross or better yet walk into an office and ask how you might help. They might ask for clothes.

4. Let World Governments fund UN activities, they are not an efficient Philantropy.

5. Epic tragedies are best handled by the big US agencies. Fact: over 50% of the US Navy's mission is disaster relief. They do it extremely well.  It's something you should be proud of as an American.  If you are experiencing longer term depression over Haiti,  you could join the Navy, but that might be an over-reaction.

6. While you have this wave of #dosomething energy - open your eyes and look around you. There are many tragedic "mini Haitis" right here in the US. Spend Saturday volunteering at a homeless shelter. Instead of turning your head as you walk by a homeless person, talk to them directly and firmly. Ask them if they are hungry and escort them to the nearest shelter. Do NOT give them money. It will be turned into Rock in 30 minutes.

7. Look at the state of Education in the US. A nationwide dropout rate at 30%. In Detroit it's almost 80% LA 60%. The kids who exit our school systems become like Haitians inside the US. They are doomed to a lifetime of drugs, crime, health problems, low wages, prison. The numers are staggering - Three Million kids a year, lost by our education system! We need all hands on deck to fix this.

8. Point #7 should disturb you as much as the tragedy in Haiti. If it doesn't, stop reading this and go figure out your own junk. However if it does, Start getting yourself up to speed on the many programs that are working very hard to transform public education. Your own district likely has a foundation that supports your schools. Call them. Visit. Ask what you can do to help. This is a good place to make a donation - help prevent an American child from becoming someone who lives in conditions like a Hatian.

9. Become an Edu-warrior. No other issue, including Healthcare and the Economy requires more attention by every citizen. It all comes back to education

10. Big tragedies happen often and they create a lot of angst and emotion. If you dedicate 10 or 20% of your time to some worthy cause, no matter what it is, you can lay claim to your heart. The angst over "I sort of feel weird joking on Twitter with all this tragedy in Haiti" is a symptom that your Karmic balance sheet is out of whack.

Do Something

Great advice from someone who knows what to do.

Posted via web from Doug's posterous

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