Trekking in the Andes
Ever since I first read the book about the Peruvian soccerteam that had to engage in a bit of cannibalism to survive, I've wanted to see the Andes Mountains.
Yes, I realize this was a bit of an unusual preamble to a post about inflammatory arthritis, but it is relevant. Sort of.
Last week, I posted a news release from Show Us YourHands! with an update on what we've been doing this year. One of our big tasks was figuring out how to make an organization work when all members live with inflammatory arthritis. We very quickly decided that expecting healthy and able-bodied production levels was a recipe for burnout and an unstable organization. And then we set about creating processes that would support the talents and efforts of all team members, while accommodating their disease. It has been a long and rewarding process, resulting in an incredibly peaceful environment. Being able to be completely honest about your needs, especially when they sometimes mean a delay in a project, is nothing but liberating. More workplaces should try it.
Our second big thing this year was to choose a project to do for 2013 and it really was a no-brainer. We have some terrific posters and a wonderful photo book that help spread the word about the inflammatory arthritis community in a positive way. We want to lower the cost so more people can enjoy them. We want to make it easier for people to share them with others so the awareness message spreads. We want to make it possible for more than to decorate the walls of rheumatologists’ offices, just as our first Community Collage decorates the wall of my doctor's clinic
Mass production is the only way to lower the cost of the posters and photo book and in order to order many copies, we need to start-up funds. And this is where our first fundraiser enters the picture.
RA Guy lives in Bolivia, really close to the Andes Mountains. His health has improved over the past 6 months and he's been doing a lot of walking. Enough to plan a three-day trek from the mountains to the jungle and last week he did it!
Just think of it! Can you imagine having inflammatory arthritis and doing a mountain trek? This was a serious effort, but one filled with joy and hope (and some degree of soreness, now that he's back home). You can see photos on his blog from Day 1 and Day 2 — beautiful shots and it looks like all members of the group made it home without getting eaten!
RA Guy dedicated his trek to hope and to raising money for Show Us Your Hands! There are four days left to sponsor the trek over at Cause Vox. All proceeds go to Show Us Your Hands! Community projects, none to salaries — everyone on the team do the work for the joy of it.
We hugely appreciate any contribution, no matter how small. Although if you want to donate a heap of money, that's fine too…