These are the collection buckets we used to raise money for the Hope Foundation. Gavin, Jerry, Esha and I have variously waved these buckets at the very many generous people of Cashel, Thurles and various Tipperary townlands. We brought them to Rugby matches in Dublin and Limerick, and to Hurling games in Semple Stadium. They have seen the warm days of summer and the cold dark days of winter.
They have earned a proud position in my “Bucket List” as they contain many great memories of a good year.
Four years ago my oldest son Jerry participated in the trip to Kolkata with Rockwell College. He documented his journey on his blog:
This year it was all about my younger son, Gavin, who made his own trip, which he recorded on wordpress, twitter, snapchat, etc. His fundraising exploits are on his wordpress site:
PLEASE DO NOT SEND THEM MONEY. They have finished their trips and made their visits to Kolkata. But if you would like to support the fabulous work of the Hope Foundation feel free to do so at their site:
What I like about the Hope Foundation is that it is a charity that strives to make itself useless. What do I mean by that?
Some charities operate in a way that perpetuates dependency. Their business is to “help” disadvantaged people. But if they are “too successful” there will be no poor people left to help and they will effectively be out of business. Self-perpetuating charities are not things I like, or appreciate.
I am very much of the mind to take people out of dependency. This is where Hope operate. They focus on educating kids to escape the cycle of slum living. They help the parents to escape the cycle by supporting small enterprises, and by freeing up the parents to work by caring for the kids in crèches. The greatest day for Hope Foundation will be when they can happily close down their facilities in Kolkata because their job is done.
That is not a pipedream. It can happen.
As my son Jerry reminds me frequently “Give a man a Hamburger and he eats for a day. Teach him to Hamburger, and that metaphor only works for Fish”.
The Fish: by William Butler Yeats
Although you hide in the ebb and flow
Of the pale tide when the moon has set,
The people of coming days will know
About the casting out of my net,
And how you have leaped times out of mind
Over the little silver cords,
And think that you were hard and unkind,
And blame you with many bitter words.