Friday, July 24, 2009

This weekend

Three volunteer opportunities this weekend.

1. On Saturday RebuildingTogether will be hosting their annual work day. They will be painting the house that we scraped two weeks ago. If you can make it out, that would be great. It is 120 Elm in N. Olean. They start at 9:00 but I know I will be late, so come whenever.

2. On Sunday on the Tuscora Indian Reservation just NE of Niagara Falls (2323 Printup Road Sanborn NY). They are building a new building. I have been there twice (one to help dig a foundation) and it is a pretty cool place. Definitely recommended if you are near there. Make sure to take gloves (and I would suggest bug spray or long sleeves, long pants, and a hat!)

3. On Sunday (not sure on time, probably 11 ish--contact me for further details) a small group will be going to Friendship to give Ed and Donna a hand. I spoke with Donna yesterday and she said any help would be appreciated.

There you have it. As our saying stickers say: Volunteer and Change the World :)

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Op-Ed Columnist - Would You Let This Girl Drown? -

Fascinating piece...centers on fundraising but is seemingly as important to getting volunteers.

Op-Ed Columnist - Would You Let This Girl Drown? -
"Professor Peter Singer of Princeton explores why we’re so willing to try to assist a stranger before us, while so unwilling to donate to try to save strangers from malaria half a world away.

One of the reasons, I believe, is that humanitarians are abjectly ineffective at selling their causes. Any brand of toothpaste is peddled with far more sophistication than the life-saving work of aid groups. Do-gooders also have a penchant for exaggeration, so that the public often has more trust in the effectiveness of toothpaste than of humanitarian aid.

There’s growing evidence that jumping up and down about millions of lives at stake can even be counterproductive. A number of studies have found that we are much more willing to donate to one needy person than to several. In one experiment, researchers solicited donations for a $300,000 fund that in one version would save the life of one child, and in another the lives of eight children. People contributed more when the fund would save only one life.

“The more who die, the less we care.” That’s the apt title of a forthcoming essay by Paul Slovic, a psychology professor at the University of Oregon who has pioneered this field of research."

So maybe we should not tell of all the people we help, just find one good story. I will say that has been my experience (consider the biggest not planned event last year. Why did we get so many volunteers? It was to help a single 80 year old. That was the story that got the volunteers. Not continuing the work in Friendship or Allegany. Sort of depressing to think about in that light.

Monday, July 13, 2009

YouTube - Gutting in Galveston TX

When I was putting together the video from this weekend, I found this that had never been uploaded from spring break. Enjoy. I will look for others.

YouTube - Gutting in Galveston TX: "A video from the BonaResponds Spring Break 2009 trip. Gutting a house in Galveston Texas."

BonaResponds Summer service day video is online

YouTube - BonaRespondsSummer 2009 video

On Saturday July 11th a small group of BonaResponds volunteers helped to scrape a house in N. Olean and to build shelves for the BnaResponds storage facility.