I’m beginning to realize the impact that our project is making, both in my life and in others and it’s quite astonishing. I suppose I should have known that this would happen, but I was only listening to my inner voice that was prompting me to get out and do what I do – create awareness with my camera.
I had a conversation recently with a medical doctor who had seen the trailer of our film. He told me that he thought I was an amazing person. I awkwardly received his compliment and replied that I wasn’t amazing at all – that it was people like him and the subjects of our film who were amazing – people who were saving lives. Then he told me that yes, he saves lives on a daily basis in his community and sometimes beyond, but that I was influencing people globally through the power of film. He reminded me that I should never underestimate the impact that I can have using my talents to create positive change.
I have just returned from a conference in Amsterdam, The European Summit for Global Transformation, where I had been invited to show my ten-minute trailer to open up the event. It was an impulse decision to attend – less than a week’s notice – but again I was listening to my inner voice and said “yes”. I can honestly say that this was one of those weekends that I know will have a profound impact on my life. It was a weekend of listening to other change makers’ stories and networking with others to make the impossible – possible. I had three wonderful days of being surrounded by believers – all just ordinary people – but people who are making the impossible happen.
Perhaps one of the most rewarding things that I got from attending this conference was the feedback I received from a culturally diverse group of people who saw our film’s tease. It was invaluable, uplifting and energizing. One thing was reiterated over and over by everyone I talked to and that was they loved the fact that my daughter and I shared our thoughts about making the film – in the film. It personalized it for them and in turn made the film more powerful. I’m not quite sure if I will edit the film to include us or will make that dialog a separate “behind the scenes” chapter, but I’m thankful that we took the time to capture our thoughts in those interviews on the last day of our 99-day journey and I thank my friend Ethan G. Salwen for his insightful questions.
I would love to connect with more change makers and in particular I am looking for young people – teens, 20 something year olds – who are doing things that are making a difference in the world. I met a young man at the conference who has created a network of young people who are change makers and he has asked me for people I may know. I know that there are people who are reading this that may very well be a change maker or know someone who is and I would love to connect you – so please let me know who you are or who you may know.
One thing I have learned by doing this project is that when you give – what you receive is always far greater.