Guest Post by Ross McKitrick
Anthony has kindly given me a bit of real estate on his website to tell you about a Christmas-themed project I am involved in. Cheerfully it has nothing at all to do with climate change, and unlike the overfed, self-important stage show at Doha, it might actually do some good for the world.
The quick background is that I am involved in the local (Guelph Ontario) Celtic music scene, and one of the groups I play in is called The Wild Oats, in which I play bagpipes, pennywhistle and bodhran. For kicks, over the past year we recorded a CD of Christmas music, arranged as traditional jigs, reels and waltzes. The CD is called Making Spirits Bright, and if I do say so myself it’s a blast. We are getting rave reviews on it for the quality of arrangements and the lively performance.
Now here is the best part. With the assistance of the aid organization World Vision Canada, for every CD that we sell, we and a group of other Canadian corporations will kick in a total of $75 for school supplies to be sent to classrooms in poor communities around the world. It can be ordered through the CD website, where you can also download a tune sample and watch a Youtube that tells you more about it.
Each CD sells for $20. But there’s another nifty thing, which is that if you order more than ten copies, the price drops to only $10 each (plus shipping and applicable taxes). So some local schools, church groups and other organizations have bought quantities to re-sell to their members at $20 each, making a bit of money for themselves while also generating large donations of school supplies for needy classrooms overseas. Also some small businesses have bought sets of 10 to give to their clients at Christmas, and groups of friends have gone together on orders to reduce their costs.
The Christmas season has only just begun, but based on early, word-of-mouth sales, we have already sold hundreds of copies. This week I traveled to World Vision headquarters in Toronto with two other band members to present them with a donation of $1,785. (That’s me behind the giant cheque on the left.) With the matching donations this will result in a shipment of nearly $27,000 worth of paper, pencils, readers, math exercize books, and other basic educational supplies. It’s the kind of stuff we take for granted here but it’s in desparately short supply in poor countries.
I have another 500 copies of this CD that I am hoping to sell before Christmas. WUWT attracts a well-educated readership that knows that schooling is the key for lifting poor communities out of poverty. If just 50 WUWT readers order 10 copies each (or some similar permutation) not only will a lot of great music be spread around the land, but I will be able to go back to World Vision HQ in the new year and give them another $2,500 in donations, which will trigger a total shipment of $37,500 in school supplies overseas early in 2013.
So I hope you’ll take a few minutes to watch our Youtube video and then hit the order button on the CD website. At present we are only shipping in Canada and the US. For those of you who take part, please accept my thanks in advance. I know you won’t be disappointed, and a lot of deserving students in needy countries will also thank you.
UPDATE – Ross writes in comments:
We can now accommodate overseas orders. Just email firstname.lastname@example.org saying how many you want and we’ll send you a shipping quote and take it from there. For Canada and the US, follow the existing payment system at http://chanterrecords.com/MakingSpirits.aspx. By the way, just since post this went up last night we have been FLOODED with orders! Thanks everybody. We will be spending the weekend packing CDs for shipment Monday morning. Also, World Vision staff told me our donation yesterday, with the matching donations added in, will fully stock 540 classrooms in the new year.