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Archive for May 18th, 2008

        Have you ever felt passionate enough about something that you were willing to step outside of your comfort zone to make an impact on the subject? 

        Here is a story about a man who has been affected by the condition, cerebral palsy and wanted to raise funds and awareness for the United Cerebral Palsy of Michigan.  You can also choose to support their efforts here: http://www.ucp.org/ucp_local.cfm/87.  He is making his impact in an unusual and intriguing way.

           His name is Neil Sauter and he has a mild form of the condition.  The way that he has chosen to raise awareness, is to walk a total of 830 miles ON STILTS over the next six weeks across Michigan.  He started on May 5th and hopes to end the walk up by the Wisconsin/UP border.  He has already raised approximately $5,300.00.  He is making a passionate impact on this issue. 

          You can make a passionate impact on any area of your life that you choose.   Update:  Neil has completed his long journey on stilts…what an accomplishment.  Good job!  He was able to raise more tha 64,000 dollars by a matching grant program through the US Department of Education.   You can read more about this at:  www.stiltstory.org.

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         Are you safe and warm; do you have food to eat and clean water to drink where you are?  You are blessed.  China is in the middle of a mass of miracles and mourning after the earthquake this past week.   Families are suffering; and, grieving losses of people and possessions.  Many are without a safe place to live.  This devastation is large scale and overwhelming to those in need as well as to the aid workers. 

         Getting clean water, food and shelter to all those who have need is no easy task.  Adding the additional strain of flooding from rivers, streams and lakes that have been blocked by debris and backed up water flow; only makes getting aid supplies into remote areas more difficult.

         In a country that encourages a family practice of having one birth child, it has a significant impact because, the earthquake has taken the future from many families.  Many have honored the Chinese government’s policy to only have one birth child to cut down on the over-population problem.  Since this earthquake brought down many schools, hospitals and other institutions that housed children…the impact has devastating, life-long consequences on China’s infrastructure.

           Those most vulnerable are the elderly and the young children.  The future can be bleak for those who only had one child to care for them in their elder years.  If they are past the age of child bearing…this can bring an end to their family line. 

          In the center of all of this madness, the Olympics are to be held in China in 81 days.  The International Olympic Committee has decided to pause the torch relay out of respect for the victims.  There will also be three days of national mourning, starting on Monday.  

           There have been stories of miracles; people who have been buried, under debris and rubble since the quake, who have overcome the circumstances and survived.  There will be many such stories as communications improve and time goes on.  One man in particular survived 139 hours trapped in rubble from a hospital and came away with minor bruising.  

           Each miracle brings hope to the hearts of those who have missing loved ones; as experts have said that, a person could survive in these conditions for up to a week as long as they had some access to water and the temperatures were at a survivable level. 

      

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