Despite their popularity in their home country of New Zealand comedy folk musicians The Flight of the Conchords have been fairly inactive since their HBO show ended three years ago. But now they have launched a new single and music video, “Feel Inside (And Stuff Like That)” – a catchy and entertaining parody of songs such as “Do They Know It’s Christmas?” – in aid of the charity Cure Kids.
This New Zealand based non-profit helps fund research into life-threatening childhood conditions: it says that these affect up to one child in every classroom. The charity has already raised more than $29 million, helping save many lives. It already has a USA spin-off, as well as one in Fiji. The parent organisation has a number of excellent fundraising events on its programme, and unusually has appointed as ambassadors some of the very young people that it hopes to help.
This approach bears a striking resemblance to the situation where the Chreda Foundation – originally set up to benefit certain disadvantaged groups of young people – now anticipates that its planned award scheme to recognise and encourage young people’s community activities is likely to end up honouring philanthropically-active individuals drawn from those very disadvantaged groups.
The lyrics of the new single derive from amusing answers given by young kids during interviews about how they would resolve the problem of sick youngsters. The video, which includes the interviews with the kids themselves, is likely to become quite a hit with fans and more general audiences alike. It’s good to know that this entertaining duo is still active, and that they are willing to help such a worthy cause. Go to http://www.curekids.org.nz/make-a-donation/ to make a donation.
With the shocking news earlier this week of yet another school shooting in the USA it’s timely and reassuring to revisit a charitable movement that was started 13 years ago, following the Columbine High School massacre.
Rachel Joy Scott was the first person killed in the tragedy on April 20, 1999, and immediately afterwards her father Darrell – quoting from her diaries, that have subsequently been compared to those of Anne Frank – began speaking publicly about her vision of a chain reaction of compassion that would change the world to a kinder place. “How do you know”, she asked in a school essay entitled ‘My Ethics, My Codes of Life’, “that trust, compassion, and beauty will not make this world a better place to be in and this life a better one to live? My codes may seem like a fantasy that can never be reached, but test them for yourself, and see the kind of effect they have in the lives of people around you. You may just start a chain reaction.” From this emerged Rachel’s Challenge, with the mission of “inspiring, equipping and empowering” people to “create a permanent positive culture change in their school, business and community by starting a chain reaction of kindness and compassion”.
And Rachel’s Challenge is now spawning events such as Rachel’s Walk, due to take place at Liberty High School, Brentwood, California on 21 April: all the schools in the District will come together to display the paper chains they have been creating… every link in a school’s chain represents a random act of kindness carried out on-campus or in the local community. They will share their experiences in spreading kindness, and will then link hands and chains in a demonstration of solidarity. Each school has its own Friends of Rachel Club, to help disseminate her message of generosity and compassion.
The Challenge, which has a strong anti-bullying emphasis, is now in its second year in the District’s middle schools, but this is its first time in the elementary schools. Already there has apparently not only been an improvement in behaviour within participating schools but an increase in kindness in surrounding communities.
What a beautiful memorial to a special young lady!
Just seen a couple of great quotes on Twitter, that are really relevant to what we’ll be considering, here on Generosity News.
- Coleen York says “Sometimes generosity goes beyond donating money. Sometimes one of the most generous things you can do is to donate your time & attention.” Precisely!
- And another post reminded me that Kahlil Gibran said “Generosity is not giving me that which I need more than you do but it is giving me that which you need more than I do.” Hmm – now there’s a challenge!