10,000 comments for 10,000 children: Blogust 2012!

UPDATED ON 8/9/12: A big huge thank you for your comments yesterday! Your comments on this post alone are worth over $10,000 -- and will help over 500 children get the vaccines they need. But Blogust is just beginning -- check out the main Blogust page every day in August to find which blog is hosting fundraising comments for the day. You can comment on every blog that's participating on the relay, and every comment left every day in August is worth $20. Our goal to raise $200, 000 by the end of the month is on track. THANK YOU.

{Psst! Today's host is none other than Catherine Connors of HerBadMother.com -- please go comment on her post and let's keep the relay going!}

This post is my contribution to the Shot@Life Blog Relay for Good.



 

By leaving a comment on this post and spreading the word you can make a real difference.

Thanks to our sponsors EVERY COMMENT is worth $20 per comment up to a maximum of $200,000 to vaccinate 10,000 children. THAT'S RIGHT: $200,000 to reach 10,000 children. And yes, 10,000 comments -- including yours! Let's do it!

 

Have I ever told you that I grew up in a developing country? I saw first hand what a difference vaccines make in the lives of children. The need is real, and it's true that sometimes $20 is the difference between life and death. $20 is what it costs for one child to receive 4 life-saving vaccines: measles, pneumonia, diarrhea and polio; as hard as it is to believe, preventable diseases like these take the life of a child every 20 seconds. But we're trying to do something about it, and you can help! 

 

The theme of the Blogust relay is "Comments Count." If you're a blogger I don't have to explain what this means to you. Bloggers love comments -- if we didn't, we'd be typing away alone at typewriters (uh, if we could find them) or scribbling in notebooks.

Instead, we're posting our words on the internet for the entire world to see and hopefully, react to.

Despite the stereotype, bloggers are connectors at heart.

I know that most of you don't have blogs, but I'm willing to bet that most of you are on Facebook. You know that feeling you get when someone "likes" pictures from your vacation? That's what a blog comment feels like...times 72 (give or take) because your friends on Facebook are, well, your friends. They like you already.

But blog readers? They come to be entertained, or perhaps they just find your blog randomly while googling for cookie recipes. They don't owe you anything. So when they stumble upon your blog and something you wrote inspires them to let you know a little bit about themselves...well, it makes all the difference in the world.

I don't know if you've heard, but writing can be lonely.

In fact, for me it has to be lonely. I make myself forget that other people are going to read my words or I'll freeze up. It's only after I hit publish that I allow myself to think of who might read my words.

When you let me know a bit about you, it makes me -- and everyone else who is reading -- feel less alone.



 

This is why, when I was asked to highlight one comment or commenter that has made an impact, I couldn't think of just one person. I love it when my friends and family leave me a comment, of course, and I'm eternally grateful for my small band of consistent commenters, but I want to honor what I call the "unknown commenter": The person who doesn't have a blog and still wants to say connect.

They read. They feel. So they comment.



Because, honestly, why should you take the time to let a stranger know you liked their words? They don't even know who you are! You have nothing to sell, no blog for them to link to. You are getting nothing in return.

And yet, you write.

You agree. You disagree. (Maybe you agree to disagree?)

And in the end, you communicate.

That's what blogging is all about.

So thank you -- to all the commenters out there.

CALL TO ACTION: Please leave a comment on this post -- it can be about anything, but if you don't know what to say, tell me about a person in your life that inspires you. 

I would be so grateful if you would spread the word about this post. Every comment you leave today (and tomorrow, and the day after and on and on that until the end of August, COUNTS.)

Communication makes a real difference -- you can give a child a shot at life! 

If you want to learn more about Shot@Life, you can find them on  Twitter and Facebook.
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Shot@Life is an initiative of the United Nations Foundation that educates, connects and empowers the championing of vaccines as one of the most cost-effective ways to save the lives of children in developing countries.

During Shot@Life's Blogust, 31 bloggers, one each day in August, are writing about people from our communities who have inspired us. The first 1,500 comments in the Blogust: Blog Relay for Good raised $30,000 for childhood vaccines ($20 per comment) in a matter of days! YAAAY! The initial donation commitment (see FAQs) is now complete and your comments have helped vaccinate 1,500 children in developing countries!

However, we are not stopping there! Read on to see how your comments so far have inspired and additional $170,000 donation:  

OFFICIAL ANNOUNCEMENT FROM THE UNITED NATIONS FOUNDATION
Thanks to you - and the incredible response to Blogust 2012 - you've inspired an additional donor to make a generous pledge of $170,000 to this amazing blog relay and what it can achieve this month.

If we all reach this target, combined with the initial $30,000, we will be providing lifesaving vaccines to help protect 10,000 children in developing countries against some of the deadliest diseases.

Your comments count.  And your donations, large and small, and the actions of the whole community, including our dear friend Anne Geddes, have helped inspire this amazing response.

For every comment made as part of Blogust 2012, $20 will be donated to Shot@Life to help provide life-saving vaccines to children in developing countries up to the additional $170,000 contribution made possible by this generous gift. We need your help to reach this goal of protecting 10,000 kids.

This response is an amazing tribute to you.  While we were already inspired when you helped us reach our initial goal of $30,000, we are equally as inspired knowing you will help us reach this new goal.  Keep posting.  Keep donating.  Tell your friends about Blogust.  Our actions together can make a huge impact....and all of it together tells an extraordinary story of celebrating each other and helping create a better world.

Since this is a relay, Blogust participants are passing the baton to the each other. Yesterday, Tiany of Social Savvy Mom wrote about the gift of comments and how the words of online friends helped her through a difficult time. Now she has passed the baton on to me, and tomorrow it's Catherine Connors' turn. Be sure to visit Her Bad Mother and leave a comment on her post tomorrow.