What do the lyrics to a rather dated Bon Jovi song have to do with nutrition? Well it’s actually a story from my heart and a thank you, to you lovely readers on this World Blog Action Day. The theme is the power of we. Yes. You and Me. And it goes a little something like this.
There was a strange man who talked about how to make a squillion dollars blogging at the same time as fighting for the rights of women. Not just any women. Women with horrific fistulas in Tanzania to be exact. And his name was Darren Rowse AKA Problogger.
Darren entered my life through twitter and influenced my journey into becoming a health professional blogger. It was through Darren I met the super smart Richenda Vermuelen from World Vision (at the time) who spoke at the 2011 Problogger Conference on the power of social media for social good. And it was through Richenda and Joy at World Vision that I became part of a group of World Vision Blogger Ambassadors, including Eden Riley. If you don’t know Eden she’s a rockstar, power blogger in Australia at edenland. That’s Eden (left) and Richenda at our full briefing earlier this year. Full of hope and promise.
And then I met Zenouba. Who’s foot will haunt me forever in my dreams.
You see soon after this happy snap (above) was taken Eden was dropped into the depths of West Africa with Eminem blasting through her ipod. Her destination was Niger and her mission to report on the emerging food crisis. Apart from my bad taste in music, and a few squillion extra readers, Eden’s in fact just like me. A wife. A mum. A blogger. And a very grateful person with a strong social conscience.
So as I wrote posts about changing the world one tweet at a time, World Vision and Fair Trade Chocolate, plus spoke at conferences on how health professionals can use social weight for social good, Eden blogged and reported her whole confronting journey. I didn’t breathe deeply until she was safe at home. And as I tucked my kids into bed extra hard each night, I read to them For Every Child – the UN rights of the child in words and pictures. Particularly right 23 for personal reasons and this:
Right 24: Watch over us. Wrap us up against the cold and rain, and give us shade from the hot sun. Make sure we have enough to eat and drink, and if we are sick, nurse and comfort us.
And when people challenge us World Vision Blogger Ambassadors on why we are raising awareness for those people over there. I feel like screaming this, the fundamental second right:
Right 2: Whoever we are, wherever we live, these rights belong to all children under the sun and the moon and the stars, whether we live in cities or towns, or villages, or in mountains or valleys or desserts or forests or jungles. Anywhere and everywhere in the big, wide world, these are the rights of every child.
And once I’d tucked in my kids. I jumped into bed with Eden….on the ipad……and met Zenouba. And cried to sleep.
Take my hand
That trip in April 2012 with World Vision Blogger Ambassadors (from Germany and South Korea too) raised the alarm for the emerging food crisis in Niger, West Africa. Through countless tweets, and retweets, and blog posts, and shares, it was soon on traditional media’s radar. And very soon after, Zenouba got the attention she deserved. So this weekend, just before Blog Action Day, at the 2012 Problogger conference, I met up with some of our World Vision Blogger Ambassadors to plan, talk and share. Darren Rowse’s closing words, in the eerily vacant sports stadium, reminded us as bloggers of our power, no matter how small we feel at times. Of our opportunity. And our responsibility.
So I took the hand that had held Zenouba. And I felt reassured that the power of we, can make a difference. Whatever your cause or fight, we want to hear, as together we have power. By working together, the amazing Scoop Nutrition community, we’ll make it. I swear.
What can you do?
What are you talking about? You’ve already done something to make a huge difference. You’ve read this post. Next you can read posts by the other World Vision Blogger Ambassadors that are joining in our Blog Action Day Linkup below. And then you can tweet or share it on Facebook using #BAD12 and #WVbloggers. If you have the capacity or desire, you may like to sponsor a child, or donate to the West Africa Food Crisis Appeal. Or just drop a comment of support and tell me if you believe in the power of we?