A couple weeks ago, a 9 year old food blogger attracted attention for the photographs she’d taken of her “uninspiring school cafeteria lunches” in Scotland. Local officials ordered her to stop taking pictures and to stop publishing them on her blog. The world responded with accusations of censorship. Within two hours, the local council reversed their decision. The social web moves fast.
In addition to taking pictures of her school lunches, little Martha Payne had set up a JustGiving fundraising project to donate food to the Mary’s Meals charity which feeds poor children in impoverished nations such as Malawi.
On her blog, Never Seconds, Martha (aka VEG) explained:
This morning in maths I got taken out of class by my head teacher and taken to her office. I was told that I could not take any more photos of my school dinners because of a headline in a newspaper today.
I only write my blog not newspapers and I am sad I am no longer allowed to take photos. I will miss sharing and rating my school dinners and I’ll miss seeing the dinners you send me too. I don’t think I will be able to finish raising enough money for a kitchen for Mary’s Meals either…
…I mentioned in my blog that last year my friends and I set up Charity Children at school and we made felt soaps and candle holders. We had a sale and raised £70 for Mary’s Meals enough to feed 7 children for a whole year!
My blog is being read all over the world and some people have said I am very lucky to have lunch at all. They are right. Lots of readers have asked how they can support Charity Children but because I can’t make enough felt soaps so it is best if you support Mary’s Meals directly.
According to the BBC, within a few hours, her simple request helped raise enough money to build a school kitchen in Malawi. People around the world reached out to support her by giving to Mary’s Meals.
Donations range from a few pounds to a couple of hundred. The majority of the donations are very small, adding up to make a huge impact.
According to a spokesperson from Mary’s Meals:
“Thanks to this fantastic support, Martha has now raised enough money to build a kitchen in Malawi for children receiving Mary’s Meals as part of our Sponsor A School initiative and has broken the record for hitting a Sponsor A School online fundraising target in the quickest amount of time”.
Martha’s goal was to fund the building of a school kitchen, about £7,000 (USD $11,000). To date, 6,539 people have donated and they’ve exceeded that goal by 1373% raising over £96,000 (USD $150,000), enough for 13 kitchens, feeding thousands of children worldwide.
If you would like to join her cause, you can donate through Just Giving.
While you are at it, consider setting up a method of donating to your own favorite charity and make a difference in the lives of others. With the millions of people in the WordPress Community, I think we could make some serious fundraising waves, don’t you?