Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Video Plea

Most of my efforts are taking place at Save-A-Thon For Africa these days so please visit there to support but just in case you missed it, here is my latest video.  Takes just 5 minutes to watch and I sincerely hope it will move you to join us and help us touch the lives of those with so little this Christmas.

Thank you!

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Great Week! Time to act!

Here is a quick update on what is happening at Bridges To America.

As you may know, my 12 year-old daughter, Kylie, and I have been working on a campaign we call Save-A-Thon For Africa ( most of the year to raise money for soccer balls, school supplies, and food to deliver for Christmas to the children in Ghana.  We leave in less than three weeks!

Last week we received the best PR we have ever had and it was very satisfying.  We were on the KSL six o'clock news in Salt Lake City and had two newspaper articles written about the effort.

Here are links to the video and to both newspaper articles.

KSL News Link

Deseret News Article

Herald Journal Article

It is gratifying to see the return of investment from our generous donors and our hard work.  It feels like we are gaining momentum and reaching a tipping point that will help us grow.  And the greatest thing about that is that we are now able to benefit more families and especially children in Africa.

We are still raising over $3,000 for the expenses of this trip and supplies for the children in the village for Christmas.  We would love any support you can give and/or encourage as you see fit.  You can visit the website to learn more and make donations here:

Lastly, we are doing a fundraiser called Chalk Talk for Charity this Thursday night,  Dec. 6th from 7PM with the Utah State Aggies Women's Soccer Team in Logan.  More details here:

Thanks for your support!

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Criticism of Charity. My Response

It's been a great week for Bridges To America as we have enjoyed several favorable stories about our efforts with Save-A-Thon For Africa (

We were on the KSL News in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Two newspaper articles were also written on our effort.

Deseret News

Herald Journal

After the segment aired I came across a couple of fairly critical comments on the KSL News website that I have heard before and I wanted to address them.  I think my response could be helpful to further understanding important issues around humanitarian efforts and charity.

The first comment is below:

am blu blood
posted 1 day ago
This is all nice and fine, however why is it that people have to look for charities to serve other nations, why not help our own nation, we have an enormous need right here in the GOOD OLE U.S. OF A. Show me ONE country that has ever stepped up to help our country. WE need to focus back on ourselves, and once we are healed then we can help others, charity starts at HOME.

My Response:

As for helping people here first and then overseas I can't disagree with the fact that we have our own problems here. No question. But, what people probably don't realize is that we actually have a tremendous safety net here in the USA. If someone really has no food they can get it. In Africa, that is simply not true. The line between dead and alive is very thin there.  This means that so much energy of daily life is spent on merely surviving that things like education take a lower priority.

It takes so little to do so much good that I can't simply sit back and wait to solve all of our problems here first and then help people in another country. If we all waited until our problems were solved do you think we would ever look beyond our borders? I don't think so.

Further, by involving my daughters, future leaders like the rest of their generation, they are getting firsthand experience in being grateful for what we do have here in the US and a priceless education in service which can be applied both here and abroad.

Second Comment:

I ShouldaKnown
posted 2 days ago
Really they are going to fly over with 150 balls? Come on think big, it's not worth the trip unless they have 15,000 balls. Give some thought to staying home and using the airfare money to send them more balls.
report as abuse
posted 1 day ago
Its the experience in seeing the kids expression as they receive these wonderful gifts. Way to go goalie!
My Response:

I have told my girls that we will leave each village there with a pit in our stomach that we couldn't do more.  But that feeling will be more than offset by the smiles and beaming eyes that thank us for what we were able to do. Frankly, this trip isn't about soccer balls, or the school supplies and food we will also be delivering, it's about going beyond our own problems and perceived lack of things and touching the lives of a few or a few hundred children who just want to know that they are valued and that their lives matter. It doesn't get any bigger than that!

I believe in doing what you can now, however small it may seem, not waiting for some elusive day when 15,000 balls is even a possibility. Though I appreciate the challenge.

I welcome your comments to my response on these important issues.