Guest Post by Gret Glyer… Check out his blog at >>>>This LINK<<<<
How Crazy Love, Kony 2012, charity: water, and the Vlogbrothers changed my life.
Three years ago I didn’t have a Facebook, I thought Twitter was stupid, and I was seriously considering spending a year as a monk (not kidding). Now I have a YouTube channel, a podcast, a blog, and I’m incessantly promoting myself on several social media platforms, multiple times a week.
Here’s what: Francis Chan. Jason Russell. Scott Harrison. John Green.
The following is a brief history of people who have inspired me, in chronological order.
This video was my first exposure to Francis Chan. After 3 minutes, I was captivated. Francis was preaching to an air-conditioned room full comfortable, complacent Americans, and telling them exactly how spoiled they are. And he managed to do it in such a way that his church actually grew after his challenging message.
I had heard of Invisible Children before watching Kony 2012 but I didn’t know much about them. Then their viral video was released when I was in college and I was floored. Who were these people? Young guys?! Not much older than me?! How did they bring the child soldier crisis to the forefront of American media?
After the Invisible Children guys made me realize that I don’t have to sit around and do nothing anymore, I started a pro-life ministry. This got me interested in researching the most impactful non-profits around. At the top of the list was charity: water run by Scott Harrison. How did they manage to help so many millions of people in such a short amount of time? How could I learn their story? This video is how.
My sister gets all the credit for this one. I had never heard of this guy and then I learned that over 2 million people watch him talk into a camera every week for 4 minutes. He uses that attention to bring awareness to serious issues and to frequently raise money for the extremely needy.
I suppose it’s about time I answer the question I posed in the title of my article.
I don’t want to be famous. But I do want the benefits. I would love to have the influence that the four men above have. I’ve lived in Malawi for over 3 years now and spent the last 3 summers in the States. We, Americans, have plenty. We have so much. I want to bridge the gap. I want people to see that even giving a little will mean a tremendous amount to the needy.
So, what’s my plan?
I don’t really know. I have this phrase written on the whiteboard in my room: “Ruin The Detachment.” People living in the States are so separated from the plights of the third world that they have trouble sympathizing. Maybe I can help with that.
As someone who lives in the poorest country on earth, I’ve been able to bring awareness to fixable problems through a YouTube series called Village Fridays.
By doing this, I learned that people like to see where their money is going. They want to see the tangible benefits of their donation with their own eyes. I think it was also helpful for people to know that many of the third-world needs were not from rare, incurable diseases, but could be easily solved with a small amount of money.
So I started to think bigger. Instead of posting one problem per week, I thought about solving one big problem over several months. That’s when I came across the possibility of building an all-girls school in rural Malawi. I began fundraising for that in January 2016, and now, several months later, the school is set to open in September. It is called Girls Shine Academy.
Also this year, I’ve been working on a new app that will allow missionaries all over the world to do what I was doing with Village Fridays. It will produce the benefits of donors seeing where their money is going, but on a much bigger scale. It’s called DonorSee and it’s available in theGoogle Play and Apple app store now.
By the way…
Where did this all start? My inspirations. My vlogs are modeled after John Green, my housing ministry is modeled after charity: water, my social media activism is modeled after Invisible Children and my desire to challenge the abundance of American life is modeled after Francis Chan.