Meet the Man Who Is Making a Difference by Walking for Elephants

Today in my Do Good 365 series, we meet Jim Justus Nyamu, a conservationist and elephant research scientist who started a campaign dubbed Ivory Belongs to Elephants”.

His campaign has seen him walk 2,500 miles across Kenya and 560 miles in the U.S. with the goal of raising awareness and increasing people’s involvement to save wildlife (particularly the endangered). Last month he completed a 283-mile walk in Kenya.

Jim Nyamu (left) is joined on one of his walks by a local supporters
Jim Nyamu (left) is joined on one of his walks by a local supporters

Learn more about Jim and his campaign via a Q&A on National Geographic.

Why You Should Join My Social Experiment on Facebook Dubbed Do Good 365

So it’s all rather simple really; I want to highlight as many inspirational and uplifting stories as I can as often as I can.

I think it’s important since every day each of us is inundated with so much information we sometimes barely read the body of the article. Furthermore, we’re constantly reading and ergo consuming a tremendous amount of negativity.

My hope is by creating a platform (a cause) on social media I can bring about some balance in your day so I started Do Good 365. I’ll feature stories on business, design, art, tech, science, environment, and entertainment all with one theme in common… good news! Each story will be written using 60 words or less (rather hard to do!), but I’ll give it my best shot.

Below is the first story I’ll feature next Monday on a social enterprise called Orange Sky Laundry. It’ll all be done in that format. Just consider it an enlightening meme.

I more than welcome your feedback on what I’m attempting and I’d love your support as well. Like the Facebook page, share it with your friends and comment. Maybe we can start a movement of positivity.

For more information on Orange Sky Laundry, click the link http://www.orangeskylaundry.com.au/
For more information on Orange Sky Laundry, click the link http://www.orangeskylaundry.com.au/

Help Air Shepherd Drones Stop Elephant and Rhino Poaching

40,000 elephants and over 1,200 rhinos killed by poachers in a single year,” throughout Africa for their tusks and horns respectively.

Map showing number of elephants poached illegally between 2010 and 2012
Map showing number of elephants poached illegally between 2010 and 2012

Illegal poaching equates to $70 billion dollars a year. This is the single most reason it’s a growing problem driven by the greed, arrogance and ignorance in parts of Asia and Africa.

The "bloody" business of the illegal ivory trade from Africa to Asia
The “bloody” business of the illegal ivory trade from Africa to Asia

In a fight to eliminate poaching, Air Shepherd drones are trying to raise $500,000 via Indiegogo. [The campaign recently ended, but you can still donate via their initiative]

Air Shepherd team in the field helping to stop elephant and rhino poaching successfully in Africa by using drones
Air Shepherd team in the field helping to stop elephant and rhino poaching successfully in Africa by using drones

It’s a valiant effort that needs your monetary support to get them to their goal. Have a look for yourself and make a donation if you can.

To make a donation, just click https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/air-shepherd-drones-stop-elephant-rhino-poaching

Donate directly to their drone initiative here, http://airshepherd.org/

‘Humans of New York’ Is Sending Kids to Harvard with a Little Help from 36,000 Friends

Humans of New York, more popularly called “HONY”, is probably the most popular Facebook page at the moment with nearly 12 million fans including me. By time you get there, I’m sure it’ll be beyond that. It was started by a talented young photographer, Brandon Stanton in the summer of 2010. Flash-forward 4 years later, it’s grown into a giant influential platform offering glimpses into the lives of everyday New Yorkers.

Brandon encountered a remarkable student named Vidal of the Mott Hall Bridges Academy, Brownsville. He’s asked the question, “Who’s influenced you the most in your life?” Vidal replies, “My principal, Ms. Lopez.” With that honest and simple response, Brandon looks more into the story of Ms. Lopez (aka Superwoman) and the school. She’s done a spectacular job in one of the toughest neighbourhoods in New York with little resources.

From one interview to the next with teachers and students offering their own stories, we’re allowed to see more into this school’s DNA. People who give without wanting anything in return and children who dream of things a lot of us take for granted, like feeling safe to walk outside your home. Brandon sees an opportunity to leverage HONY’s platform and rightfully so. Between him and Ms. Lopez they realise the best help that could be given to the school would be funds to support field trips to Harvard University. In the words of Ms. Lopez, “I want my scholars to know that there is not a single place they don’t belong.” Those are words to live by.

Just five days ago Brandon started a campaign dubbed “Let’s Send Kids to Harvard” to raise USD 100,000 on Indiegogo. To date they’ve raised over one million dollars. I received an email alert from Indiegogo telling me this campaign is “now the largest Indiegogo Life fundraiser ever!” This shows social media is perhaps the most powerful platform in the 21st century to start a movement. The best part, Mott Hall Bridges Academy has funds to send all its students on field trips to Harvard. They’ve even created the Vidal Scholarship Fund aptly named after the young man who first shared the story of his principal without reservation. He’ll be the first recipient too.

Education is the best investment you’ll ever make. There’s still time to lend your support to this campaign. Click here to donate.

Rally behind other amazing causes in the world. Sign petitions, donate, like, share, comment, and advocate. Just be a part of doing good.

Meet and Help Free Mali, the World’s Loneliest and Saddest Elephant

Since 1977 or for the last 37 years, Mali, a female elephant, has been kept by herself in a concrete enclosure at a Manila Zoo with no dirt and grass under her feet or trees to scratch against and leaves to eat. Her only interaction comes from the visitors who sometimes throw her peanuts.

Elephants by nature are intelligent and complex animals with their own intricate societies that involve a largely matriarchal system. Elephants care, love, play, protect, and mourn each other throughout the course of their lifetime. They spend a great amount of time walking upwards of 30 miles a day over vast amounts of lands in search of food and water.

Imagine the life then that Mali has “lived” after being stolen away as a young elephant from her mother in Pakistan and transferred to the Philippines. It’s nothing short of traumatic. In her current environment, she displays signs of depression and sadness. From a physical standpoint, scientists and biologists have stated she will die under these conditions. Her feet in the nearly four decades have paid the price against the concrete surface and in a video, you can see what is termed “favouring” taking place. This occurs when an elephant routinely lifts one foot off the ground and rests its weight on the other three.

Visitors look at the then 35-year-old Mali at the Manila Zoo in June 2012
Visitors look at the then 35-year-old Mali at the Manila Zoo in June 2012

Enough is enough; animals in captivity still have their instincts and desires for life in the wild. There is an elephant sanctuary ready to take Mali into its family of 12 other rehabilitated elephants called BLES, short for Boon Lott Elephant Sanctuary located in Thailand. However, the Filipino officials have to date consistently refused to release her. We therefore need to put pressure on them.

If you are willing to make a difference and do good, take five to 10 seconds of your time and sign this petition via http://www.freemali.com/. I know it takes that miniscule amount of time, because I signed the aforementioned and shared the link via Facebook, Twitter and Google+. If you’re in the Philippines you can even help in the protests and boycott the zoo.

Tell your family and friends and let’s get Mali to freedom.

What’s Your Definition of a ‘Superstar’? Take it Away Adidas!

German powerhouse Adidas employs the faces of Pharrell Williams (music producer), David Beckham (footballer), Rita Ora (artiste) and Damian Lillard (basketballer) to share their opinions on what a superstar is not. Clearly this whole time we’ve been misled. Oh the deception!

From all accounts, we’re all superstars! That’s just fine by me. With this revelation though, why didn’t Adidas call me or you to be in this Ad? I’m slightly insulted.

As a graphic designer and illustrator, I do love and appreciate the clever use of Adidas’ famous three stripes as a strike-through to word superstar. Freaking brilliant!

Anyway, check out the new Ad that’s basically trying to get you to buy the Superstar shoe, first launched by Adidas back in 1969.

Virgin Atlantic’s New Ad Drops Some Inspiration on Us in a Kickass Way

‘The Idea’ – Virgin Atlantic’s new ad packs quite a punch that hits home in just 81 seconds (video below).

The narration’s on-point and I’m sure it’ll have you (like it did me) thinking about gambling, Las Vegas and mobster flicks. A clever way to drive home that the stakes are high and there’s a lot to lose!

This one’s for all of us and it’s key message — “Life doesn’t come to you, so go to it and let it fly” goes beyond just being a well-conceived advertisement into a powerful mantra we can adopt to our lives.

My T-shirt Campaign Launch on Teespring.com

I’m trying to reach my goal of selling 50 t-shirts.

Yesterday I discovered www.teespring.com where I created and launched my own campaign. It’s basically a crowdfunding approach and I’ll need you to help me out. I only need five (5) backer to get my design printed with your pre-orders. My campaign will end December 15th! I’m hoping you’ll be one of my backers.

‘Do good’ is a simple mantra to live by and a daily challenge to yourself to do at least one kind act for another being. Good will always come back to you (Karma). My design also features a tick or check mark to signify the deed’s been done. Lowercase was used to complement the image.

Design will be screen printed on American Apparel Crew. Product features the following:

Fit: Fitted Unisex Tee | Fabric: 100% ringspun combed fine jersey | Details: Soft, premium fabric | Sizes: XS to 3XL

View it below and hover over design to see the back. This is why we have turned to you and WordPress. With your support I can have my t-shirt made.