The ability to write makes a world of difference. Sure, I’ve got a biased view since my entire business model is based on the fact that I’m not too shabby at putting words in a row. But think about the difference that effective writing (and not just literacy skills) have made for a whole list of people:
- J.K. Rowling may be a billionaire these days, but in the 90s, Rowling was on welfare. Her writing not only has resulted in one of the most popular series of books of all time, but also in one of the most amazing rags-to-riches stories I’ve ever heard.
- Jane Goodall is best known for her work with chimpanzees — but the only reason any of know that she ever went to Africa and started studying these animals is because she’s written so extensively. Goodall has written or co-authored more than twenty books. She’s moved scientists, environmentalists and everyday people to action throughout her career. She’s also brought in donations for Gombe Stream National Park, the Jane Goodall Institute and other non-profits on an epic scale.
- Penelope Trunk’s blog seems to be the way she thinks — and it’s done wonders for her. Trunk has turned situations anyone else would describe as failures into a book, a couple of start ups and an incredibly well-read blog.
These are just the first three writers who came to my mind — there are plenty more. I don’t have any numbers, but I’m willing to bet anyone able to do the research that the ability to write well means a difference of thousands of dollars in what you earn in a year, maybe even millions over the course of a person’s life time.
I’m a big believer in supporting efforts to improve literacy and access to education in general, but there’s something going on right now that has touched me on a deeper level than most of the organizations I personally support.
The incredible Colleen Wainwright, of Communicatrix fame is turning fifty this year. To celebrate the milestone, she’s raising $50,000 for WriteGirl. WriteGirl is an organization that empowers high school girls through creative writing — at least that’s their mission statement. Their work goes a lot deeper. They help girls learn to write well, connect them with mentors, help girls prepare for college, teach them skills that will translate into career opportunities and more. Currently WriteGirl operates primarily in Los Angeles, but this is an organization that is worth helping no matter where you live.
So help WriteGirl. You can donate to them directly, of course, but Colleen’s campaign is a particularly cool opportunity. There are prizes that go along with different contributions levels, but what I think is absolutely awesome is the ability to say that you were part of an effort to raise $50,000 for something amazing.
Click here to see the donation page that Colleen has created. Do it now.