Yesterday was World Camel Day, a time to honor nature’s greatest gift to mankind and the planet. In light of the occasion, I shared a number of world class camel resources and delivered at least one irresistible offer. That offer(s) is still on the table.
World Camel Day was also a time for me to reflect on how far I’ve come. I’ve been drawing camels my whole life, but sharing my skills and teaching others is a recent phenomenon. I used to ask people to draw camels mainly to ridicule them. For example:
That’s Joseph drawing a camel there. Don’t feel too bad for him. He is a good friend and I know he can take the heat. But how many couldn’t? How many lives did I scar when I laughed and then failed to show them the way? Believe me, I live with this every day of my life.
These days, however, the guilt is being replaced by pride. I recently taught 25,000 people how to draw camels in the village of Fana, Mali. Many of my former students have become teachers themselves.
But still, I ask myself: “Am I doing enough?” With that thought in mind, I have a proposal for you:
Buy the How to Draw Camels Ebook and I’ll Send you a Camel
A camel drawing, that is. If you buy the book for a minimum of $5, I will send you a hand drawn camel from Mali.. The camel will be drawn by me or by one of my grandmaster students. It will include a personal note. It will include postage from Bamako. It will undoubtedly be worthy of a frame or perhaps a shrine.
Where does the money go????
Every penny I receive through this website is given to projects that I have experienced on the ground. Specifically, any money raised over the course of this week will be going towards a new water system for an urban women’s farming cooperative in Bamako. Here are a few concrete reasons why they deserve support:
1. Mali’s parliament recently passed a new family act that promotes gender equality. Around the same time, the President of Mali appointed the first female Prime Minister. But political progress is not always reflected on the ground. The women of the co-op have completed literacy training. They control the co-op’s income. As a result, they have greater leverage within their households and their community. The co-op provides a model for realizing aforementioned political aspirations.
2. The co-op also provides a model for the integration of marginalized communities. Misabugu is a neighborhood of intermittent and sometimes nonexistent public services, and a growing population. The co-op, a source of sustainable income, raises the profile of the neighborhood and its continued success offers a message to the local government: this could work in other places.
For more information on the co-op’s water problem and the co-op in general, check out this post. Still have questions? Send me an email at phil dot paoletta at gmail dot com.
Don’t have any money? Or already have the book?
Maybe you’ve already bought the ebook. Or maybe you’re broke. I understand. I don’t have a whole lot of dough myself. But I have set aside a bit for this project. For every drawn camel I receive (up to $50), I will donate $1 to the co-op. I did this previously with Partners in Health. Partners in Health got a donation and I received 50 beautiful camels. Draw a camel. Take a picture. Better yet, draw a camel in public. Better still, draw a camel in public and write howtodrawcamels.com underneath it. In any case, you will need to download the How to Draw Camels Ebook, which you can purchase for $0 (just adjust the price of the shopping cart).
Send all camel drawings to phil dot paoletta at gmail dot com
I look forward to sending you a camel. Or receiving one.
One other little thing? Could you take just one second and tell someone about this. You can “like it” on facebook or tweet it with the buttons below. Make an announcement in an office meeting. Send an email. Draw a camel on a sidewalk and write howtodrawcamels.com underneath it.
Cutting Edge Camel Resources for Celebrating World Camel Day
If you have not read my interview with the What Took You So Long Foundation, check it out here. They are currently making tracks around the world, filming a documentary on camel milk. Visit them at whattookyousolong.org.
Speaking of camel milk, what do you know about it? Do you know that is a whole food with 3-5 times more vitamin C than cow’s milk, ten times more iron than cow’s milk, and that it is low-fat, low-cholesterol and rich in imunoglobins, protein and B vitamins? Have a look here.
You might also want to check out the blog Camel Milk Extreme Challenge. Nancy and Gil, owners of the Oasis Camel Dairy in San Diego, are spending a month eating and drinking camel’s milk, dried dates and water, nothing else!
Lastly, take a look at this article about one man’s effort to stop the proposed camel cull in Australia. This is where the photo at the top comes from.
Spread the word.