Just as Doctors without Borders contribute medical services to Haiti as it recovers from last week’s earthquake, writers at Associated Content are contributing the fruits of our labor- writing- to help the Haitians.
When Associated Content announced last week the opportunity to raise funds for earthquake victims in Haiti by contributing awareness-raising content, AC contributors came together as a community to brainstorm how we might maximize our impact.
Associated Content originally promised to donate $5 plus enhanced article earnings to the International Rescue Committee for each Haiti article donated up to a maximum of 500. Due to the enthusiastic community response, Associated Content announced Friday that it would donate even more- up to 700 articles worth.
Marilisa Kinney Sachteleben started a forum thread that quickly “caught fire,” indicating intense participation. She challenged fellow writers to commit to 4 contributions each. Six minutes later, enthusiastic responses began pouring in.
Writers posted links to their Haiti stories for fellow contributors to read, Tweet, and promote on Facebook and social bookmarking sites to increase article exposure, bringing maximum donations to the International Rescue Committee.
Whether they wrote about charities doing earthquake relief, community fundraising, or particularly vulnerable survivor populations, the writers poured their hearts into their Haiti articles. Some of us had to hold back tears writing about the Haitians killed or injured in the earthquake; I know I did when describing how my ten year old daughter’s class cried at the news that one girl’s grandma died, a boy’s cousins died, and another girl’s family members were missing the day after the earthquake.
One writer said she’d been out of work so couldn’t donate money for earthquake relief but was greatful for the opportunity to use her writing to support the cause. Marie Anne St. Jean wrote an article suggesting ways members of the public lacking money to donate could contribute to Haitian earthquake relief efforts.
Some writers weren’t sure what to write, particularly as the number and variety of Haiti articles published grew, but fellow writers coaxed them through their uncertainty. Anita Cameron initially came up empty-handed in her topic search, telling fellow writers her expertise is in disability awareness. When multiple writers pointed out that Anita’s expertise on disabilities would provide insight into what lay ahead for many earthquake survivors, Anita was off and running.
Probably the most compelling story to surface in the Associated Content Haiti content drive is one written by Nina Rotz. Initially, Nina hesitated to write about her experiences living in Bosnia under seige, but she overcame her reluctance and produced a compelling article about how her experience in Bosnia heightened her awareness of the trauma suffered by the children of Haiti.
Jan Corn, an adoptive mother who brought home her own son only 10 days before Romania pulled the plug on international adoptions, wrote with authority and compassion on adopting Haitian children.
Donald Pennington reminded us how flawed our excuses and procrastinations are when it really takes very little effort on our part to make a small contribution to Haiti.
And JM Leong reminded us not to forget the animals of Haiti.
While most writers wrote factual pieces, a few used creative writing to support the Associated Content Haiti content drive. Lome Puttasath wrote a poem, while Jim McCray took the unusual and potentially controversial step of composing a satire.
Find the latest articles on Haiti submitted to the content drive to generate donations to the International Rescue Committee here. Share your favorites with friends and online communities and you’ll be contributing to their power to earn funds to support the Haiti earthquake victims.