Friday, November 11, 2011

Amplifying the noise

I have had the great pleasure to interview some of the clients who receive food from the High Plains Food Bank.  It was an idea I had.  I see the disconnect all the time when I am speaking to people about what I do.  They just cannot fathom people in America being hungry.  The problem was, there was no face on hunger.  So I started tell everyone that I wanted to talk to our clients and let them be the face of hunger.  If you can see it, sometimes it makes it easier for you to understand.

I got a call from one our agencies, Loaves and Fishes in McLean Texas.  It's about 70 west of Amarillo on I-40.  I met Vonnie, the Executive Director, who's one of the most amazing people I have ever met.  Then she introduced me to Penny, her client.  Penny's smile lit up the room, and I instantly connected with her.  She's amazing.  We sat down and she started to tell me her story.  I fought back tears the entire time.  She's been through more than any person should ever have to go through, and what her hard times have done to her was make her closer to God.

Needless to say, I didn't know what was going to happen when I put the video together. Penny, is great, but I just wanted to tell her story.  I wish I could say I knew I was making something that was going to change someone's life, but I didn't see it, all I could see was telling a story, Penny's.

I uploaded the video and the people of McLean started to see it.  I got a call from Vonnie today, Penny's story has inspired local pastors to show the video of Penny to their congregations and have Penny talk about her life. One of the people I work with said, "You have not only given hunger a face and name, but also a voice."

Who can you give a voice to?  Penny had been screaming, and not one heard.  All she needed was a microphone.  I have thought about that, when I started this project, I never thought that was the goal.  It has made me look around to find other's that need someone to amplify their noise.  I think you should too.

Here's the video about Penny.