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Friday, July 21, 2006 

2006 Blogathon Info

On July 29th, to celebrate my birthday I will be staying home and participating in Blogathon 2006. My efforts (or lack there of, depending on your take on my writing) will be to raise money for Habitat for Humanity, of Jimmy Carter fame.

Basically how this works is on July 29th I have to make some kind of post every 30 minutes from 9:00 am until 9:00 am the following day. They don't allow us to produce anything in advance, so basically whatever is randomly on my mind at the time is what you're going to get - but since it's me it'll be all gold, so be sure to keep tuning in all day and night. And remember, the quality of the writing will be directly proportional to the donations raised ;)

The donations aren't everything, though. If I'm going to produce 48 Pulitzer worthy posts, I'm going to need a little bit of help. So stop in over and over, leave me comments with suggestions on things to write about and other support you might have. Just keep me going. Alanah at Vancouver Canucks OpEd will also be getting down and dirty in this blogathon (she's playing for Canucks Place Children's Hospice, a very worthy charity. I've already left her a pledge, and if you have a little more to spare after supporting me, you should too :) ), but hopefully we won't just be left to keep each other company at 3am. Even if you just stumble home Saturday night stop in and leave either of us some kind of drunk idiocy that we can laugh at, anything will help.

About My Charity

In all seriousness now, Habitat for Humanity Canada is based in my hometown of Kitchener-Waterloo, and over the past 21 years has dedicated over 1000 houses coast to coast. What people don't always know about Habitat for Humanity is that it is not a give-away program. In addition to mortgage payments, each homeowner invests hundreds of hours of their own labour, called "sweat equity", into the building of their house and the houses of others.

What we don't always realize in either the Sports or the Internet world is that not everyone makes $5 million a year to play 16 games and spend all their time in a gym. Many people in Canada are living below the poverty line, and in unsafe conditions to bring up their families. That's where Habitat for Humanity comes in.

The three criteria to qualify for a Habitat home are (1) need for affordable housing, (2) ability to repay a Habitat mortgage and (3) willingness to partner with Habitat.

Need for affordable housing is defined by a family income that is below the government-set Low Income Cut-Off (poverty line) for their particular region, and existing living conditions that are inadequate in terms of structure, cost, safety or size. The ratio of shelter expense to total income is also factored.

Ability to repay a Habitat mortgage requires that the family has a stable income sufficient to cover the monthly mortgage payments and other expenses that come with home ownership.

Homeowners must demonstrate a willingness to partner with Habitat by contributing 500 hours of volunteer labor ("sweat equity") towards the building of their home.

Through volunteer labour, efficient management and tax-deductible donations of money and materials, Habitat builds and rehabilitates simple, decent houses with the help of the homeowner (partner) families. Habitat houses are sold to partner families at no profit and financed with affordable, no-interest mortgages. The homeowners' monthly mortgage payments go into a revolving fund, which is used to build more houses.

Like myself, many of you have volunteered countless hours to Habitat construction, and that is the key to making this charity work. But doors and windows and so on aren't free, and often construction can be limited by resources not volunteer numbers or need. Anything you can provide for Habitat for Humanity would be greatly appreciated. Even if you aren't charitable, remember your donations will keep me up for 24 hours, so you can think of your money as going towards torturing your least favourite blogger on the inter-web. That's not too shabby either.

NOTE: You DO NOT send me money. Just commit your pledge on the Blogathon site, then after the event you can send your donation DIRECTLY to Habitat for Humanity, either online or by sending a cheque/moneyorder. If you need assistance at that point, let me know. I'll be more than happy to help.

A couple of friends of mine have worked for Habitat - for several different projects - and they loved the organization. A great cause, Kent - it does so much good for so many people.

And I'll look forward to your 3:00 a.m. posts on Sunday! I have no doubt they'll be much more intelligent than mine.:-)

don't you have a football draft at 10:15am on saturday? writing a post AND drafting players that don't suck will be a tough combination. autodraft?

either way, me and the wife threw in some money for you, so you better write some good stuff. too bad i have to go do that "amazing race" thing at the same time. have fun with it though!

fantasy baseball playerAny one using the phrase "easy as taking candy from a baby, has never tried taking candy from a baby before.fantasy baseball player


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