What Binds Us Together?

I don’t think I need to tell anyone reading this blog that it is written from my personal perspective as I try to share just what the Greater Impact Foundation is endeavoring to do to have a positive social impact on poverty wherever it exists.  Each week I seek out interesting ways to make a simple point that provides the opportunity to do just that.  I am no great writer and I often fear that I fail to achieve that nexus.  But I try.  You may feel just that as you read further.

Right now I am on the last leg of a trip, KLM from Amsterdam to Entebbe to begin a 16-day trek to three countries (Uganda, Kenya and Ghana) to visit nine enterprises GIF is either already working with, or considering a new partnership.  It is a long first leg.  In flight, I just finished watching the film, “Woman in Gold,” with Helen Mirren and, admittedly, the end of the movie brought tears to my eyes.   Then, suddenly I knew what this blog was going to be about.  It wasn’t a profound epiphany, but it was pleasing nevertheless.

The film is essentially about the preservation of a family legacy.   Yes, the plot is driven by restitution for famous artwork stolen by the Nazis from Jewish families during WW II and it is compelling, but what teared me up was the not the recovery of stolen artwork, but the underlying plotline about the importance of family.  Not just that, but also the importance of preserving those family memories, keeping them intact, and passing them on to the next generation.  This is a near and dear subject for me as I have always preached to my own boys about the essential nature of the family unit and how there is nothing more important to preserve.  It also made me think about many of the families GIF is trying to positively impact.

Today, their condition, in many ways, is similar to those families swept up and irrevocably torn apart.  War does that.  So does poverty, which the chaos of war exacerbates.  This is absolutely the truth in Uganda.  Less so in Kenya and Ghana, but countries, still for many reasons outside their control, suffering poverty that irreparably damages the family unit.   

I mentioned previously that I have had the opportunity to travel extensively over the last 40 years.  With certainty, wherever I go the single most common denominator among all people from every culture is the preeminence of the family unit.  It is without question the greatest binding force of humanity.   I have known this for a while.  Nevertheless, it made me recalibrate just a touch what the Greater Impact Foundation stands for.  Yes, seeking ways to help eradicate poverty in a sustainable and scalable way is our mission.  It is just heartening to know that pursuit also enables families to remain intact, preserving a legacy that we hope one day truly unites us all.