Saturday, June 16, 2007

How much does opportunity cost?

The Badwater Challenge

It's been an eventful weekend. The good news is that Bob Gentile helped me with my "Team St. Lukes - Badwater" video from Comcast Local Edition, and you get to see it here! This is the first pitch for my fundraising for this most deserving team, which is local here to Spokane.

Before peeping, here's what I want you to ask yourself:

How much does something like OPPORTUNITY cost? What is it worth? Can you even put a price tag on it?

Here's the other thing I'd like you to think about:

What if you had the key (or at least part of the combination lock) to open the door to OPPORTUNITY for someone...would you do it? At what cost? Would you risk your life for someone? Would you give your trust to someone? Would you help someone pay for her college education? Would you give someone a job? Would you buy them a pair of running shoes to try? Would you donate just a few dollars....if it meant that the recipient would be given an OPPORTUNITY to explore her talents, maximize his potential, or even just dare to dream?

How much does THAT cost?

I know the people who visit my blog here know that you can't really answer that question; the people here KNOW first-hand that OPPORTUNITY is PRICELESS.

So, what if we were who we are, with all the same talents and desires and OPPORTUNITY for running, and every single thing was the same about us...everything. And we had all it takes to run from here to there, and to finish our race, maybe even to WIN our race....and we had everything BUT our feet to get us there?

What would happen to that OPPORTUNITY to run, to race, to compete, to win? Well, it would still be there, wouldn't? Yes, the OPPORTUNITY is there; we just wouldn't have ACCESS to that opportunity. We would just need a way to get some "feet" and the OPPORTUNITY would instantly materialize.

And that's just what these kids need: they need to realize an OPPORTUNITY. They have everything else it takes. Just as we need our running shoes, these kids need racing wheelchairs. And that's where they need our help. And that's where we can help them. Do you want to be a part of someone's opportunity? someone's dream? someone's chance? Then let's pitch together - all for a small cost - and let's buy these kids some racing wheelchairs. They need our help. They are NOT limited by their feet or their chairs, they are limited only by the lack of funding to purchase those chairs.

They are some of the dearest kids; some of the most motivated kids, driven to excel at their sport. They have everything it takes to be great athletes. Like you and me, these kids strive to overcome and compete and better themselves both physically and mentally.

It's within our collective power to give them wings. FIVE racing chairs; that's all we need. They are $2,500 a piece. That's $10,000 total. We'll take more if we can get it because gloves and helmets and tires are needed too...but we'll take what we can get. You all know - you've all done this before - $5, $10, $100...EVERY little bit helps. Please don't be shy because you can only give "only $5"! Remember, if everybody gave $5, we'd exceed our goal in no time! EVERY little bit helps!

So, please, check out the video below, log into Badwater race roster for the link or go to the Team St. Lukes website, click on the donation link, and select Team St. Lukes from the drop-down menu. Donate whatever amount you want. Every cent helps!

And just one more thing. I ask the questions above because I ask them of MYSELF. I have many times been on the receiving end of "charity," if you will. One example is of my friend from when I was 17 years old. His name is Mark Graham. I'm no longer in touch with Mark Graham, but he was my inspiration when I was a young and troubled kid trying to overcome some obstacles in my life. I will NEVER forget him and his family. I remember vividly many conversations, this one in particular. I remember I told him how badly I wanted to go to college. I said I had to go. I desired it; I even DESERVED to go. BUT I had no money. I made just over $4/hour then and I lived on my own in Chicago. I didn't even own a car at that time. I told him I had no money to go to school. And I remember he looked across that IHOP table and around the pot of coffee, and he said, "YES, you CAN go to college; anybody can go to college. Even YOU. You can take loans; there are resources everywhere; you just have to find them." I remember his emphatic conviction and utter confidence in me. ....and only THEN, after he opened my door to OPPORTUNITY did I start searching for ways to help with getting the money to take MY FIRST CLASS at a community college.... and the story goes on from there.

...all for the cost of a cup of coffee.... The PRICELESS reward of realizing OPPORTUNITY!. Let's see what we can do for this deserving group of young athletes!


DRW said...

Hello Lisa, great video! I have to question your choice of photos though, who is that big goofy looking guy dressed in his whites, some inexperience rookie would be my guess. I will definitly donate to your great cause. It was nice to meet you during the Memorial Day training weekend in Death Valley, I could tell you are a very strong runner and I predict a great run for you in Badwater this year.

Take care, DRW

Bob - said...

Great Video Lisa...Yes they DO deserve an opportunity!

You are going to rock Badwater

Lisa B said...

Hey Danny! Yep, you're sorta famous! So is Nancy. What a great team you have. Looking forward to seeing you there!

Thanks, Bob... and thanks again for your help. :)


Olga said...

That was a great question, Lisa. And a very worthy cause. I agree with every little helps. I had never been able to splurge 100's of bucks, but I don't get shy of small amount either. I'd also suggest to put it on both ultra lists - you may get a few more of those $5 entries just by this.
Hope you rwach your goal, and people get helped and encouraged!

Karrun said...

Hey Lisa! You were a great inspiration at Shafer Butte and I enjoyed meeting you and talking with you! Can I send in a donation - not charge it? To where?

Anonymous said...

I tried to donate through the INHS Foundation. The first thing they ask for is where I'd like the donation to go. Which one would you like me to choose? You have a WONDERFUL time in BW and I'll be following your progress. Remember, water, salt, and calories!!! Your efforts ROCK!!!
(~: George

Lisa B said...

Hi Karen & George -

So sorry about the delay in getting back to you. I was sans computer for a long time. I'm back now though and catching up!

Karen - Yes, you can mail a donation direct to:

Team St. Lukes
INHS Foundation
PO Box 469
Spokane, WA 99210

I will need to make this known for other people too. Thanks for asking!

George, please select "Team St. Lukes." All donations there go right to the kids.

Thank you both so very much for your generosity and kindness!!