Tag Archives: 100 Friends

One Person at a Time


Do you know the saying, “If you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all!”?  I was trying to follow it’s advice; hence the long pause in my posting.  I try to keep the posts here on a positive note but sometimes just reading the newspapers puts me in a foul mood.  The world is just full of incidences which are competing to be the worst news.

Since the previous post on the Norway massacre, there has been renewed fighting in Syria and Libya, the train tragedy in China, the flooding in Korea and the terrible famine in the horn of Africa.  If I stuck to the saying above, you will not have heard from me for a long time.

But I read something that shamed me.  While I was sealing my mouth and sticking my head in the sand, one blogger faced the horrors face on and decided to make changes in her life.  I picked up the thread first at Jess’s (Daysgoby) and she led me on to Jenny (Just Jenny from the Blog).  My admiration to both ladies.  If you want to be challenged to be a better person, please visit those posts – especially Jenny’s.

Then I came across an article about Marc Gold and suddenly, I had something super nice to say.  Marc Gold is known as the Shoestring Philanthropist.  He had been a volunteer working with Mother Teresa one summer.  However, at the end of his stint, he was depressed by the size of the problems and the urgency of the needs that he saw.  Mother Teresa told him that he couldn’t save the whole world but he could save one person at a time.

Later he went to Tibet and by chance met a woman who had a serious ear infection that had gone without medication and  the ailment had become potentially life threatening.  He spent just USD 1 for the antibiotics that saved her life.  He then found that for USD 30, he could buy her a hearing aid that would restore her quality of life.  He was shocked to see how little it cost to achieve so much.

As a result, Marc started the 100 Friends Project that for 22 years, since 1989, has changed lives through these small donations and projects.  Each person that is helped is asked to promise to pay back the generosity by helping others in the community as the opportunity arises.  To date, Marc has collected donations and given away USD 550,000 on these projects.  His aim is to give away USD 1 million and become a kind of reverse millionaire.

Suddenly, I felt inspired again, not to be overwhelmed into inaction but galvanized to do what I can  – one person at a time.

(If we feel we cannot do anything personally, we can always pray or at the very least, give through organisations like Marc’s)

Marc Gold: Making a Difference in Kabul