I know people who say that charity begins at home but in the age of the internet isn’t everybody local? I have people across the world who I speak to daily who I know better than the people who live next door to me. My neighbours are no longer geographical but sociological. My friends are not always physical entities but also digital connections.
In a world such as this everybody should be looking after each other no matter where they live or what their politics is. We should be working together to make our world a better place in as many ways as possible. The commonality of fundamental beliefs in every world religion can be summarised by Bill and Ted (in their most excellent adventure) as “Go forth and be excellent to each other”. The trouble starts when people try to quantify how excellent one methodology is over another, or how one nation has better ideals than others. To counterbalance this, I am a firm believer in spreading random acts of kindness as much as I am able in order to help others who are doing their best to improve the world.
Here in the UK we have a wonderful thing called the NHS which is a little slow and clunky at times but it essentially delivers us all free healthcare. Costs for major diseases such as cancer are covered by us all through a tiny payment each month. As such any fundraising towards healthcare tends to be in the form of trying to help rare cases who need expensive and vital care that just can’t be afforded here. Other fundraising is in the form of fun runs and charity events to bring money to research organisations to help prevent and cure diseases.
In other countries they are not so lucky when universal healthcare isn’t in place. Even in developed nations, such as the US, it can be down to luck as to whether major diseases such as cancer are treated. Trying to cover healthcare costs is a nightmare but even with insurance, the inability to hold down a career through sickness means there are stresses beyond what you’d possibly consider. Families reach stress points and homelessness can become a very realistic possibility. Suddenly doing a tiny charity fun run of a few miles here in the UK feels inadequate.
It’s for these reasons that I’m supporting Scott Spitz. I bounced across his graphic design work through a meme that made it across the internet. I liked his design so much I tracked back across the ether and found his website and ordered a T-shirt. It’s only after this that I found out what Scott was doing and why. He’s working hard to raise money to support Family Reach and to make sure that families are supported through their cancer journey.
But it’s not just T-shirts that he’s been producing. Scott is a distance runner. Even typing those words ‘distance runner’ seems inadequate. The distances Scott runs are phenomenal. He considers a half marathon as a little jog in the park. To put these distances into context, he’s running the entire length of Indiana next month to raise money for Family Reach. That’s something like 350 miles he’s planning to cover in the space of 7 days. I mean, that’s just stupid isn’t it? I can’t even run to the shop at the corner of my street and he’s going to run an entire state… because he can… and for charity.
I’m championing Scott because what he’s planning to accomplish is so ridiculously selfless, and so punishing, that this guy needs all the support he can get to make this happen. We shouldn’t just be looking to support the people next to us, we should be looking across the world and helping people like Scott. If he can reach his fundraising goal he will be making a massive difference to so many people it’s unreal. He’s already accomplished so much but he needs as many people as possible behind him.
For me, I have no agenda here. I don’t know Scott, and probably will never meet him, but I know that my random act of kindness is the kind of support that we can all do with having in our lives. So I’m not asking you to follow this link and sponsor his run, I’m telling you. Click on the link and do it.
Because we can.