Founder – Chief Change Optimist – Author – Host – Speaker – TV/Radio Personality – Mentor
Ariane de Bonvoisin - Founder and Chief Change Optimist
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Tuesday, June 3, 2008

A River Swells from Little Streams

Change is all about forward motion—making a choice for the positive and going toward it, connecting with something bigger than ourselves and taking action. Recently, I became aware of a movement that was launched, appropriately, at the Apartheid Museum in Johannesburg, South Africa. Called the Movement for Good, the catalyst is the idea that each person has the power to make a difference.

South Africans are "good" people—93% of South Africans give to social causes (with donations, with time and with materials). Ordinary individuals donate 12 billion annually, corporations kick in another 5 billion and there are 100, 000 organizations that are working to make a difference. Yet the headlines tell a different story—often, all we hear about in the US are tales of crime, corruption, greed, poor education and the ongoing HIV/AIDS crisis. These stories are important but are an incomplete picture of life on the other side of the world.

The positive energy of South Africans, so much of which is below the radar, needs to be harnessed. Good people need to connect and mobilize. The vision for the Movement is based on the statistic that approximately 80% of South Africans have access to a cell phone, which inspired the concept of harnessing this communication tool “for good.” A technological platform has been developed to enable people to join as members of the For Good network via cell phone or via Forgood.co.za, thus becoming part of a larger movement for positive action.

As Movement for Good spokesperson Bryan Habana explained: “We all, in our individual capacities, can make a difference. The Movement for Good starts with you.”

The motto of the movement is “Noka e tlatswa ke dinokana," or "A river swells from little streams” and is based on the premise that each and every South African can make a difference in their families, their communities and society as a whole, so that the whole of South Africa can benefit from our own individual actions.

How our whole world could change if we committed to a movement for change! If South Africans, who have seen more than their share of divisiveness over the years, can commit to mobilizing as active citizens for good, we can too! How can you create this on a micro level in your home, your neighborhood, in the places that you are each day? Inspire us with your ideas—who knows what they might become?