Catherine Connors is a mother, writer and recovering academic who traded the lecture hall for the playroom and discovered that university students and preschoolers have much the same attention span. She still dips her toes into academic waters by writing the occasional scholarly article about the place of motherhood in Western philosophy, but mostly now she changes diapers and wipes noses and indulges in long reflections on whether Yo Gabba Gabba is a harbinger of the decline of western civilization. Oh, and she blogs: in addition to Bad Mother blogging at BeliefNet, she is, among other things, the author of HerBadMother.com, Managing Editor of MamaPop, moderator of Her Bad Mother’s Basement, co-founder and co-editor of WeCovet, Contributing Editor at BlogHer, and (deep breath) founder of and contributor to Canada Moms Blog. And in her spare time… oh, wait. She doesn’t have spare time. But she’s okay with that.
Today is Earth Day. I am, personally, feeling a little bit irritated with the Earth, the Earth being the source of the pollens that have attacked me and clobbered me into an allergy-ravaged mess, and so I am not feeling particularly motivated to go outside and hug a tree or collect recyclables or what have you. Not that I could if I wanted to – I’m sluggish and dopey from Benadryl and am curled up on the couch feeling sorry for myself. So. What’s a sick and/or lazy person to do if they’re feeling twinges of guilt about laying down on the job of being the change that they want to see in the world?
Well, here’s something (and, disclosure ahoy! this is a sponsored post, although one the content of which is directed entirely by, and enthusiastically endorsed – hence the writing of it – by me. Which is to say, no, really, this is a really good thing, and I mean it when I say so):
American Express has partnered with TakePart.com to create what they’ve called The Members Project:
a platform for, yes, taking part in social change in the easiest
possible way. Easy is good, people. Easy doesn’t mean passive or slow
or inactive – it means accessible and manageable and ready-at-hand and
DO-ABLE. Being the change you want to see in the world is an awesome
sentiment, but it means squat if you’re not able to do it. The Members Project aims to make it do-able. That – as I said before – is a very, very good thing.
So how does it work? In their own words:
Everyone can help change the world for the better, one step at a time.
American Express has joined with TakePart.com to bring you
opportunities to make a difference and provide a platform to express
your passion – in small manageable steps.
Whether it’s voting for a favorite charity to receive funding from
American Express, volunteering time, donating, or telling friends,
everyone can take a small step with Members Project and start making a
Volunteer at charities that American Express helps you find and get Membership Rewards® points for doing so
Vote once per week for the causes American Express should
fund. Members Project is donating $200K to five causes every three
months. This quarter’s voting ends May 24, 2010.
Donate money or Membership Rewards® points to one of each
voting period’s 50 selected charities, or choose from over 1 million
Share your involvement with the program to inspire and encourage others to participate.
There’s a whole section devoted to organizations working in the
areas of the environment and wildlife, so it’s ridiculously easy to
just click over and take part in supporting an earth-friendly
organization for Earth Day. Or use the platform to find a volunteer
opportunity, and get out of the house and get your hands dirty.
There’s also a section for health and wellness. My favorite charity isn’t there – yet. I actually wrote to the project and asked them to consider including Parent Project Muscular Dystrophy, one of the organizations that works to raise awareness of and research funding for the illness that is killing my nephew. If they do add, expect me to be plugging this even more.
Now, go do something that gets your hands dirty. Or give away some money. Whatever works.