The power of friends telling friends telling…

It’s about more than about giving money — it’s about creating connections. By encouraging individual participation and involvement, we will create international communities of common interest. This is the essence of social networking.

This is exactly what is about. It’s good to know we are in good company. Thanks to my colleague Hannelore for pointing me to this interesting article!

Tom Hadfield had sold for 40 million US dollars at the age of 17. Eight years and a trip to Zambia later he’s now taking on the fight against malaria. With the “web guru” (as he’s labeled in the Reuters article by John Joseph) aims to support local researchers working on ways to treat or prevent malaria – and who are facing a terrible lack of resources. The fact “that thousands of people are dying every day from a preventable disease” prompted Hadfield to start MalariaEngage. By joining forces with Peter A. Singer and Abdallah S. Daar, both health professors at the University of Toronto, the social entrepreneur’s initiative has surely gathered momentum. In the article, Singer is quoted as saying: “We feel young African scientists have very good ideas that end up in the dustbin. This is about helping committed young researchers with good ideas to help themselves create a better future.”

This is a great approach to make the world a better place. We share Hadfield’s hope that social networking will be used by more and more people to get engaged in social change.

Like him, we believe in the positive power of the internet – and “in the power of friends telling friends telling friends.” Good luck, Tom!


2 Responses to “The power of friends telling friends telling…”

  1. 1 Dave April 24, 2008 at 4:37 pm

    We are using very similar language with our Citizen Base Initiative at Ashoka. ( There is incredible power in the collaborative engagement of a wide base of citizen support. The internet is opening all sorts of opportunities but many citizen sector organizations are finding creative solutions on the ground as well. Social Entrepreneurs such as Tom are driving this movement further. Onward.

  2. 2 aishah April 24, 2008 at 5:15 pm

    The citizen base is a very interesting initiative. I will look into it more in depth. You’re right, everything starts on the ground. Online opportunities cannot be a substitute for offline actions. Thanks for commenting – please don’t hesitate to give more feedback and/or information on CBI. It’s highly appreciated.

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