Giving a Shot @ Life
While at the Dad 2.0 Summit last month, I learned about the Shot @ Life campaign (through the United Nations Foundation) to give children in impoverished countries vaccines that we fine folks in America take for granted. Last week, the campaign came to the Georgia Aquarium in Atlanta, so my 3 youngest got to skip school for the first half of the day and learn about fishes and poverty.
The premise behind the name of the campaign is that if we facilitate giving vaccines to children around the world who would otherwise go without them, we can give them a "shot" at life, as in a chance to live. In Austin, there were whiteboards allowing us to fill in what we believe children should have a right to pursue once given a chance at life. Naturally, I elected to encourage their growing up to sue people.
As we took in the exhibits and let the children take in the large aquatic carnivores all around them, I noticed a table with a bunch of screaming and cheering women around it, so I cautiously approached them. It was a donation booth. Apparently, for a mere $20, one can give a child lifetime immunity from diarrhea, polio, pneumonia, and measles. There were gifts and t-shirts available for the tiers of giving: $5, $20, and $60.
I couldn't believe it. For a measly $60--much less than we would have spent to go to the aquarium and eat lunch on our own dime--we could give 3 children a chance to grow up and become lawyers? And said 3 children would never worry about shitting themselves or finding a wheelchair ramp or applying foundation to cover facial sores? How great is that? I gave them the $60 and marveled at the level of whooping and hollering over such a small donation (given that 5 of us had been given a free trip to the aquarium plus a meal) while pausing to reflect on how good we have it just for being born in North America.
They even took pictures of my 3-year-old flipping the numbers representing the 3 children's lives who'd been saved, while my 5-year-old provided quality assurance (it's her special gift to her brother), and they stuck them on their Facebook page.
I wasn't asked to write a post about this event or to promote it in exchange for a complimentary trip to the aquarium, but my wife and I were so amazed at how little it takes to impact so my lives that I chose to spread the word. Want to donate to the cause? Click here. Want to learn about future events? Click here. Want to see a cute picture of my daughter's nonchalant thumb sucking while a few feet from a giant flesh-eating whale shark that could swallow her soul? Look below!