After treeplanting my way through university, I decided to move to the city of my birth, Prague, Czech Republic. I was involved in some charities for the 15 years I lived there, but eventually got tired of the stagnation, so I moved myself and my business into a truck to travel around Europe for the next five years, solar panels on roof, totally self-sufficient.
However, while constantly moving on the road, it was difficult to get involved in local charities. I tried many online NGOs but I ended up spending so much time jumping through loops and hoops that it occurred to me I could have spent all that time more productively simply by starting my own charity. After all, I was running several successful online business, why could I not start my own charity?
I lay there in bed pondering what I could possibly start, and it did not take long to offer precisely what I knew best: how to survive off the internet and solar panels. I chose as my recipients those who I felt needed it the most: Africa. And hence was born my Africa Charity Project.
As part of my travels, I aspired to save up at least a thousand bucks to fund a village somewhere, my first planned stop an orphanage in Mombasa, Kenya. Seemed an interesting country to start in, safer of the lot, nice temperate climate, and neighbour to some poorer countries where I could venture to later.
Unfortunately, for a long time my earnings were too shoddy to make the big move, so instead I contributed my help remotely.
The latest fruits of such endeavours has been a horticulture development project in Tanzania, for a fellow I have been helping over the years. In this case I helped him write up the application for this grant and gave him a good reference.
Albert is active in his work and there are other similar projects listed in my charity site above. Because of its similarity to treeplanting, thought I’d post it here, and while at it, start the following poll.
One of the ways in which this site earns an income is by helping rookies or experienced planters apply to over a hundred planting companies at once instead of spending the time to find their contact details. After all, a lot of planters these days are students, and I know from my own experience that, as the school year winds down, one can spend every minute of their time cramming for the final exams.
For this I have been charging $50, rather a modest trickle of income for me. My primary goal for this site is to help improve the industry and I make much more substantial income elsewhere.
Anyway, my thought was to increase this $50 to $60, and donate 10% or some portion of the total to help plant Africa. Then again, for students, this additional $10 might be too much, and already $50 barely seems worth my time. I already spend plenty of time maintaining this site (putting together all my advice, and other matters), and have the usual kzillion projects on my table as it is – many of them already charity in nature. In any case, I think it would be a nice notion.