On Monday, July 24, 2011, ten bloggers will travel to Kenya with the advocacy organization ONE. They will spend a week seeing, hearing, feeling what life is like for mothers in the developing world. Through their reports, we will all gain a better understanding of what many of the world's poorest families experience every day.
This incredible collaboration between ONE and parenting bloggers has given me pause to think about what we do here at Parent Hacks. ONEWeek reminds me that most of the problems solved by Parent Hacks are small ones. We have the luxury of attempting to optimise our already-full lives.
I am not trying to trivialize what we do here, or to minimize the difficulties of modern, mostly-first-world, mostly-middle-class parenting. Nor am I trying to silence people by trotting out the over-simplistic statement that "there are children starving in Africa." What I am trying to say: we have much to be grateful for, and we are powerful when we come together to solve problems.
Over the years, I've gotten a few notes from parents who say Parent Hacks has changed their lives simply because they feel a moment of recognition and connection for the hard, often invisible work of parenting. It's amazing what using your voice can do — to offer a tip, to comment on a tip someone else has offered, to place our crazy adventure with our kids into perspective, and to share the stories of other parents around the world.
I will be passing along news from the ONEMoms as they embark on this journey, because I think this is one of the most important blogger collaborations ever to happen.
Here's what you can do:
You can read along. I will be posting here at Parent Hacks, but you can also keep up with the ONEWeek blog.
You can follow the ONEMoms on Twitter. If you're a Twitterer, search for #ONEMoms.
You can get updates straight from ONE. ONE will never ask you for money. They will simply ask you to learn and to share your knowledge. Sign up right here.
You can spread the word. Tell your friends about ONEWeek. Tell your Mom. Tell your kids. Write about it. From ONE:
Together we can shine a spotlight on the success and challenges that accompany the fight to end extreme poverty and preventable disease around the world.
Here's Emily McKhann of The Motherhood (one of the bloggers traveling to Kenya next week) wearing her ONEMom t-shirt. I intend to wear mine next week while the ONEMoms are in Kenya.
Would you like one? I will put a t-shirt in the mail to the first 7 people to sign up for ONEMom updates and to let me know about it. Once you've signed up (from this page, or from ONE), send me email at [hacks at parenthacks.com] with the subject line I'm a ONEMom.
Wow! Thank you to all who have responded! All the t-shirts are now spoken for, but I hope you will sign up for ONE updates either way.
We're already making a difference together. And we can do more.
T-shirts are Women's Medium. Dads are invited to be ONEMoms. The t-shirt cut may not flatter you, but will make a fine gift for an important mom in your life.