Each of us has our individual passion, and mine has been the environment … ever since the 1960s when I was in High School. I personally don't understand the greed behind financially benefitting from wreaking havoc with the environment. My brother teases me that, if everyone followed my lifestyle, there wouldn't be environmental issues. But sometimes I think I'm just a weirdo, or maybe an environmental nerd, based on the extremes I go through to minimize my footprint on the earth. And yet…I'm also very proud of my lifestyle.
In 2012, I attended a gathering at a Charlotte, NC farm-to-table restaurant hosted by Renee Maas, North Carolina's Food & Water Watch Organizer. During this gathering, and during the course of the evening while the information was presented, I became hooked on this wonderful organization! I believe if you are reading this, you're obviously looking at the web site, and perhaps feeling the same way I felt six years ago.
Here is a list of what impresses me about Food & Water Watch:
- Wenonah Hauter, the founder and executive director, is an incredible woman who is a wise, passionate and fearless leader, a thought-provoking author of both FOODOPOLY and FRACKOPOLY, and a tireless activist for environmental issues…a woman who very obviously "walks the talk"
- If you want to present information to an audience on their behalf, training is required in addition to a review of the accuracy of what you're presenting
- Staff members are comprised of a diverse mix of people, each one very obviously passionate about this organization
- Food & Water Watch is open to partnering with other organizations united in the same goals
- Published materials are impeccably researched
- Food & Water Watch is not aggressive
Upon realizing how I felt about this organization, I set about determining how to assist in their mission. No matter our individual circumstances, we can all do something to address the world's mounting environmental issues. Here's a list of my accomplishments, specific to Food & Water Watch, as an example of what you can do:
- Whenever Renee came to Charlotte on business, I provided food/lodging inclusive of when Wenonah additionally joined Renee for the FOODOPOLY book promotion (provided financial savings on food/accommodations to Food & Water Watch)
- Share information with friends and family in regards to current issues (for example, fracking/plastics), and Food & Water Watch (ask them to sign up for "take action" alerts)
- Along with other activists, hosted petition-signing / information table at local Farmer's Markets
- Along with other activists, attended regular Meet-Ups around the "Let Me Decide" campaign
- Sign petitions and/or call leaders, as prompted by texts/emails from Food & Water Watch
- Along with other activists, hosted GMO presentations (for neighbors, YMCA members)
- Attend webinars hosted by Food & Water Watch
- Regular monthly contributor
My most recent contribution - and one I'm VERY excited about - is my eBay business! 100% of the proceeds of my eBay sales are donated to Food & Water Watch! Furthermore, eBay doesn't apply their fees in this type of arrangement, so it's a win/win situation for all involved. Since my retirement, I have no interest in hanging on to things like jewelry, home décor, etc. thus I'm minimizing my possessions with the added bonus of donating to my favorite nonprofit - I LOVE IT! Furthermore, even as a retiree, my company matches both my monthly donations plus my eBay donations.
In summary, I've outlined my personal take on giving, but I realize we each have varying abilities for accomplishing the same goal. I'd like to encourage you to focus on whatever it is you're passionate about, and get involved. Trust me, your contribution is needed and very appreciated, especially for the sake of our future generations.
Do you want to join Lee by including Food & Water Watch in your estate plans? Let us know! Please contact Royelen Lee Boykie by phone at 202-683-2509 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.