What is Dirty Wall Project?
In the beginning, (April 2009) when I wrote the description of what I thought DWP should be about and what I thought I could accomplish, I didn’t have any experience or guidance, just a small amount of funds and a desire to do something instead of nothing, which would make lives lived in poverty more comfortable. A few years and working trips later, I discovered just how naive I was and that discovery was exciting. I have realized that I can do so much more than I ever thought possible or manageable.
Most of what I wrote below still holds true; my mandate to “see a need and fill it” is how I operate to this day, and will continue to do so. With knowledge gained, DWP has been able to build long lasting projects like the school in Saki Naka and the “garden and slum beautification project” completed in March 2011. DWP’s next project is ” Girls Can Be” which will start in August 2011 in Mumbai, India.
This is a never-ending journey…..
The “Dirty Wall Project” is an effort to fill immediate, small needs in the developing countries that I travel in. I have travelled extensively for 10 years and during that time I have sought out volunteering opportunities or ways to contribute to the local economies of the countries I visit. My frustrations with bureaucracy, paperwork and religious bias while trying to volunteer in India and other developing countries drove me to be a one person charitable organization. Being an independent traveller, I have the ability to meet local people in my search for basic lodging, meals and transportation. This enables me to build relationships, have conversations and develop a sense of where my effort and the money raised for this project will be best spent. I am able to see a need and fill it immediately. I employ locals both to inspire me and to help me understand cultural differences. Together we are resourceful and adaptable which enables us to work in unusual circumstances and less than ideal conditions. With the support of generous donors, we work together tirelessly in orphanages, slums, and have held numerous one day health camps.
I may not change lives, but I can bring some comfort, food or a helping hand to someone who is living in dire poverty. The list of needs is endless in developing countries where the poor outnumber the rich.
As documented in this blog, the first two years of the Dirty Wall Project’s endeavours have been successful. Over the next several months I will be able to use the knowledge I have gained to continue to fill needs in a meaningful and respectful way. I have discovered that one person can make a difference and that is truly exciting. I will be documenting my projects in India through photographs and this blog. Follow my progress as I make my way through this amazing country, using the generous donations and the sale of my photographs to help fill a need, one person at a time or one village at a time.
The “Dirty Wall Project” has no overhead and no salaries to pay. I am a completely self-funded traveller. Every dollar donated to this project is spent entirely on filling the needs of the people I meet in India. The Dirty Wall Project Foundation is incorporated under the Society Act, issued at Victoria, British Columbia, on April 27, 2010. (Number: S-56630)
Check out the Dirty Wall Project blog and be inspired to do your own volunteering or become a donor.
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