The world has been touched and saddened by the devastation and destruction wrought by an earthquake in Haiti. Rescue teams including religious organizations, medical and military personnel swarmed Port Au Prince in an effort to prevent further loss of life and hope.
But back in Fulham, West London, a little 7 year old named Charlie Simpson cried at the images of Haitians suffering from homelessness, lack of food and death of loved ones. He was particularly touched by the children many of whom became orphans. He appealed to his mother to help him set up a sponsored bike ride around a nearby park. She set up a web page on www.justgiving.com which allows donors to contribute to UNICEF.
His simple message: “My name is Charlie Simpson. I want to do a sponsored bike ride for Haiti because there was a big earthquake and loads of people have lost their lives. I want to make some money to buy food, water and tents for everyone in Haiti.”
With that simple statement, his simple act of riding his bike eight kilometers (five miles) around a park and the dream of raising $500 (US), Charlie has to date raised over £100,000 ($160,000). There was an outpouring of support, encouragement and money from those who were inspired by this act of compassion on the part of one so young.
The learning lesson here is one of the elegance and simplicity of the dream and the act. Charlie’s dream is huge – to be able to supply the needs of everyone in Haiti – but his action was wonderfully simple. Only a child or one that is child-hearted could combine these elements into effective action that can change the world.