the story behind lemonaid

[post moved from previous site betterlemonaid.com, discontinued Dec’16]

The title of this blog may be about lemonade, but the idea for this blog started in December 2013 when I had a martini in my hand.

I was sitting at a bar, and a guy jokingly asked me to summarize my “life philosophy in five words.” I did, because it was really easy:

“GOOD INTENTIONS ARE NOT ENOUGH.”

When it comes to volunteering, philanthropy and humanitarian aid, perhaps the greatest reason that aid efforts fail (and that those failures are omitted from newsletter updates…it’d be quite a downer, huh?) is because of ego and the desire to believe that good intentions ARE enough.

“But good intentions are really important, aren’t they?”

Yeah, they are. Usually necessary, but insufficient to enacting positive change in the world. Something changes as you grow older- that “something” being your obligation to be more aware of the world and its complexities.

“and the thinking behind the cheesy blog title is because…”

The image of young children working a lemonade stand for a fundraising cause is supposed to symbolize, among other things, an admirable spirit of giving (as well as an entrepreneurial drive). As those lemonade stand kids grow up, we stop patting them on the head about “changing the world” because we expect them to learn the truth – that there is a world of complexity attached to the act of giving.  AKA life is complicated as heck.

This blog is an attempt by a young adult to:

(a) Educate myself about modern humanitarian aid (for starters there’s this Onion article that is pretty helpful. Seriously.)

(b) figure out how an ordinary person can/should get involved, by highlighting some cool social entrepreneurship ideas/enterprises and great causes along the way.

Talk to me! comment or tweet at @betterlemonaid – always looking for new orgs and causes to spotlight

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