Spoken From the Heart

Social Media isn’t just about getting the most Twitter followers, Facebook friends or enhancing your online reputation. Social Media also provides a way to express, create and give.

Over the last month a number of people gave towards a project  called #SOS09 (Shout Out Social) which had two purposes; to help raise funds for an Opportunity International project and to encourage people to be creative for a cause.

Around the world, individuals used their creativity to express something that mattered to them, including topics such as Healthcare, Hope and Green Spaces. They submitted their images to a Flickr Group, and the images were displayed as part of a digital wall show at Horse Bazaar over the weekend.

Eileen Clegg graciously created a mural to shout out for Creativity and explains her message on video

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TNKHTye7Kp0]

She says,

“The more we can express ourselves and what is authentic about us, we are sharing with others to add to (this) collective knowledge…

..” so the more we can define ourselves, our creative selves, what we are interested in, our knowledge – then it makes it easier for other people to find us as well, so we can work together..

When we use visuals to express ourselves we are saying: ‘this is a picture of what I am thinking right now’ we are not passing judgment on the world or trying to tell it like it is. We are saying ‘this is what I see right now’

And that’s the best part about creativity – it’s completely individual, nobody can argue with it – and it’s always wonderful.”

Shahin Shafaei reminded people of the importance of creativity and expression in our day to day lives, by sharing his experience of nearly two years in isolation at an Australian detention centre.

Although the event (unfortunately) didn’t raise a stack of funds, being part of this project and event was personally fulfilling. Eileen and Shahin spoke from the heart. A¬† number of individuals around the world took a few minutes to use social media for positive change, and a small bunch of people braved the rain to come along to the SOS09 event. Even the decor of the venue represented the importance of people, history and culture in a technical and creative context.

Saturday evening I left the event knowing that people around the planet had made a difference, however small, and that each of us had experienced something good through our individual contributions to this project against poverty.

Have you been part of a creative project that made a difference? How important is authenticity and “speaking from the heart” to you?

If you would like to thank the people who contributed to this project AND make a difference to a group of women living in poverty right now, you can make a donation or purchase some quality greeting cards or wall art (all proceeds go towards this Opportunity International project in the Philippines. Thank you for your kind support.)