How Breast Cancer and a Blog Remind Us About Using Social Media for Good
By Melissa Ford on August 20, 2012
BlogHer Original Post
Dena Stern has breast cancer and a blog. The first fact is the fuel for why she is taking to the Internet to spread awareness about monthly self-breast examinations. The second fact is how this message is spreading across the Internet, jumping from one social media account to the next. I don't know Dena at all. But someone connected to her passed her story to someone else who passed her story to Josh who passed her story to me. And that -- to me -- is the definition of the World Wide Web and how we can use it as a platform for spreading awareness.
Her friends also used social media in order to raise $10,000 in a single day to help manage the costs of her non-insurance covered medical bills. The money didn't come from people who directly knew Dena. They came from friends of friends of friends as the story passed from blog to blog. And other bloggers then stepped forth to use their platform or their special talents in order to not only help Dena directly, but to ask others to utilize their social media sites to help others in their community.
Brokeass Gourmet writes,
The second thing--and I realize it may sound vague, but that's only because there is so much room for interpretation--is to look within your own life and your own community at ways that you can use your skills and talents to help other people or causes. One thing I'm learning now is that there are so many different ways to make the world a better place--and even the smallest courses of action count. What are your talents? What can you do?
When she puts it that way, you realize that it's not just about giving money or even making meals for a person in need. That it's not always tangible. Sometimes it's about delving deep and donating our platform, our skills, our hidden talents. Sometimes it's simply about making connections or passing a story.
Because yes, everyone who passes the story has had a role in helping out this random woman.
I am sure that if you looked around your community, you would see other people who could benefit from something that is within your capabilities or utilizes your talents. How could you use your blog to help make someone else's life a little easier?
Social media has long played a role in helping connect those with needs with those who can help. From the online bone marrow drive for a match for Amit Gupta to Team WhyMommy which spread the word about Inflammatory Breast Cancer. Sometimes we forget that amongst all the articles of social media gone wrong. If nothing else, use your platform today to spread word of your favourite cause; what you believe all people out there need to know. We have a lot of power with our social media accounts. We just need to remember to use them for good.
What cause will you be spreading word on today via your blog or other social media accounts?
Photo Credit: Community via Shutterstock.
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