Monday, April 30, 2012

Where the Road Leads

It's seems I have struggled for a long time to try and find the perfect opportunity to volunteer. I researched and read trying to find the one that tapped into a central core or nerve. Then the economy spiraled downwards and I was working two jobs. No time to think, no time to volunteer. I felt that I was missing something but funny how working until 11pm drains your brain of all coherent thought.

I thought I have to do something, anything. I happened to see on ABC World News at Night and there was Kiva. Micro loans and microfinance to help entrepreneurs all over the world. Something touched nerve so I went over to their website. Wow, a loan as little as $25 could change someone's life. Where do I sign up?

I started looking at loans from Eastern Europe, Africa, South America even the United States. Who could I lend to first? There were bakers, florists, taxi drivers and more. Mothers, fathers, widowers, singles, married Kiva borrowers looking to grow their business and their lives.

Lending is the next logical step but who to lend to? I wanted someone to resonate with me. I wanted their story to leap out to me to say, "Read about me and learn who I am and what I do." Then once I lend, what can I do next? I started translating for Kiva for Russian loans. (with the help of hubby).

Then I came across AustinPetsAlive in Austin and starting doing videos, writing pet bios and then emails blasts and Twitter. I feel the need to do more to challenge myself. I'm reading all I can about social media, interactive, writing and anything creative. It's empowering and scary at once because you think there is more I could learn and I'm not doing enough. I guess it begins one step at a time. Now, I'm Branding Manager at APA overseeing all of our promotional materials and keeping our brand consistent.

This road has taken me some twists and turns but my advice is never to give up until you find the volunteer opportunity that is right for you. It may be just around the corner.


Social Philanthropist

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Getting the word out about people, nonprofits and events changing lives through social media.