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Be The Instrument Of Change In Society: A Moment With Bill Reflection

Updated on May 2, 2013

SEATTLE TO BUILD NATION’S FIRST FOOD FOREST

I came across this article a few weeks ago and I found it fascinating. You can find the story here.

Sixty miles down the road from where I sit writing this article, the city of Seattle has set aside a seven-acre plot of land, and on that land they will plant a sustainable food forest. It will be planted with berries and nuts and fruit trees and other plant life that can be picked and eaten by citizens of that fair city.

The cost to the citizens will be zero. It is just another example of one community stepping up to the plate of Life and hitting a home run.

Without community service, we would not have a strong quality of life. It's important to the person who serves as well as the recipient. It's the way in which we ourselves grow and develop.
Dorothy Height

Community service = growth and development. How true is that?

I have written several articles about the community garden movement in my home town of Olympia, Washington. Driving around Olympia is really rather remarkable. There is a growing sense of community here and that sense can be seen in the ever-increasing number of community gardens. The one pictured to the right is on land donated by a neighborhood church. It is about one acre in size and for a nominal fee residents can rent a small plot of land and raise their own vegetables. Any vegetables not used by the garden members are then given to the local Food Bank to help feed the poor.

Community service = growth and development.

Humanity One World
Humanity One World | Source
One of Olympia's community gardens
One of Olympia's community gardens | Source
Another community garden in Olympia
Another community garden in Olympia | Source

OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST

I have also had the opportunity to write articles about other people who have seen a need and decided to do something about it.

I wrote about Stephen Ritz, an educator in Brooklyn who taught inner-city youths to grow sustainable rooftop and vertical gardens, and in so doing increased the graduation rate in that school. I wrote about the 9 Nanas, a remarkable group of women who raised money for those in need by baking pound cakes and anonymously giving cakes and proceeds to the poor. I wrote about Angela Prattis, a woman in Philadelphia who took it upon herself to offer free lunches to kids who were hungry during the summer.

What is the common link so very obvious in all of these stories?

There was a need and someone chose to do something to alleviate that need.

TIMES ARE TOUGH MY FRIENDS

And they are getting tougher. Maybe not for the top 20% of Americans, but the bottom 80% is definitely feeling the crunch. As times get tougher we see more distrust and fear, and the draw bridges are raised and it is every man and woman for themselves, and the sense of community goes the way of hula hoops and bell-bottomed pants.

Except in the instances I have mentioned and many more like them.

Do you live in a community? Most likely all of you said yes, I do live in a community, whether it be a large city, small town or just a village out in the country. But what does it mean to live in a community? Is that just a congregation of homes, or does it mean more than that? Is there….should there be…a sense of belonging and oneness? There was in the old days for sure. Back in the 1800’s and early 1900’s, communities worked together, laughed together and celebrated together. They understood that they were only as strong as their weakest member, and the 3 Musketeers would have been proud of their community sense of all for one and one for all.

Yes, times are tough, but now is not the time to hide away in our little fortresses, ignoring the needs of others. Now is the time to build community and develop a bond. Now is the time to reach out to those in need, and if your government will not do it then it is your responsibility.

Do you not see that? Can you not embrace the wisdom in that statement?

Make the conscious decision to be a part of a community….a real community and not just a collection of lawn chairs and barbecue pits.

What can you do to be an active community member?

“At the end of life we will not be judged by how many diplomas we have received, how much money we have made, how many great things we have done.
We will be judged by "I was hungry, and you gave me something to eat, I was naked and you clothed me. I was homeless, and you took me in.”
Mother Teresa

Think about it!

Proudly wearing my H.O.W. tshirt...why I look so grumpy is beyond me.
Proudly wearing my H.O.W. tshirt...why I look so grumpy is beyond me. | Source

A Moment With Bill

Are you a member of H.O.W.?

See results

H.O.W. WILL YOU DO IT?

I believe in Humanity One World. I believed in it enough to begin this movement and I believe in it enough to begin working on the book by the same name. But that is not enough.

I must believe in it enough to change that which needs changing. I must be a walking, talking symbol of H.O.W. If I see a need it is my responsibility to provide a solution. I cannot turn to the government and expect them to be the answer. For far too long our society has expected our politicians to be the solution to problems we caused. The time for that sort of backwards thinking is gone. If change is going to happen then it must happen because of me, and you, and you over there. It must happen in Topeka and Key West. It must happen in Philadelphia and Green Bay, and it must happen in Newark and Modesto. Small groups of determined people must be willing to step forward and be the instruments of change that they wish to see.

I am currently reading a fascinating book called “The Cultural Creatives.” In it, the authors, Paul Ray and Sherry Ruth Anderson, talk about a new culture group that has arisen over the past few decades in the United States. This group of people, numbering in the millions, care deeply about “ecology and saving the planet, about relationships, peace, and social justice, about self-actualization, spirituality, and self-expression…..they are activists, volunteers, and contributors to good causes more often than other Americans.” The authors go on to say that once this new collective of people realize their numbers, their impact on America promises to be enormous, shaping a new agenda for the twenty-first century.

God I hope so!

I see it happening. I see it in my own town and I see evidence of it in towns across the nation. Slowly, like a butterfly emerging wet and shaking and then spreading its wings, I see more and more people embracing the concept of community. It fills me with…..hope!

I find hope in the darkest of days, and focus in the brightest. I do not judge the universe.
Dalai Lama

We have lived through some dark days, and we have a few more in front of us. However, I refuse to give up hope. I believe in this country and I believe in its people. We have pulled together during dark times in the past and I see evidence that we are once again answering the call.

There are great needs and we are the solution. Will you join the rest of us Cultural Creatives? Will you join us in the H.O.W. Movement?

Will you be the instrument of change you want to see in this world?

2013 William D. Holland (aka billybuc)

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    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Good morning DJ1

      I would wait until you have time to write a full hub. I have given up trying to predict what HP finds objectionable.

      Have a safe move back home for the summer and again, thank you for a beautiful act of kindness.

      bill

    • profile image

      DJ Anderson 4 years ago

      Bill, we are in the process of making the transition to go back home for the summer. Once we arrive back home, it takes a few weeks to get the house up and running. It may take awhile before I will have the time to concentrate enough to write a hub on this. Do you think I should copy and paste that which I wrote to you, and use it as a short hub? HP might label it as trying to publish something that is already

      on HP. Let me know what you think.

      I did not know your best friend has Alzheimer's. 52 years old, how tragic! Our next door neighbor, up north, was diagnosed early last year. He is not responding to medications. This disease knows no boundaries.

      My best to you and Bev,

      DJ.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      DJ, I have tears in my eyes....write a hub about your experience....please. People need to read about this. As you may know, my best friend is 52 and has Alzheimer's......

      I'm not going to write a great deal about your comment. Anything above and beyond thank you would be filling space....I will say that you brought a smile to my face and my heart today. This is what each of us can, and must, do.

      Thank you DJ, and bless you.

      bill

    • profile image

      DJ Anderson 4 years ago

      Bill, wanted to give you an update on my pledge.

      Saturday, I spend several hours visiting people in a nursing home.

      No, I did not know a single person residing there. I sat and visited with people who had been there for many long years.

      I held tiny, bony, cold hands of women who were elderly, frightened and lonely. They know this is the end of the road for them. But, I heard their soft voices speak of their accomplishments and talents, and their favorite memories. I looked at photos of great grand children, pets that had passed and homes where they once lived.

      Lastly, I got to visit the Alzheimer's ward. I look at eyes that had died years before. One nurse told me of one of the residents who had been in the ward over 10 years.

      Bill, I shook hands as earnestly as a politician. I gave away so many smiles my face grew sore. I told silly jokes and laughed at their jokes.

      Do you know what happened, Bill? Those wonderful ladies and gentlemen gave me a gift that I never expected. They gave me an incredible feeling of well being about myself. I have been on an emotional high since I walked out of that facility.

      I am so happy that I finally got off my dead ass and started trying to

      do something to give back to a world that has given me so much.

      I have you to thank for getting this ball rolling, and I plan on continuing to visit more facilities.

      We only have today. Tomorrow may be too late.

      Many thanks, Bill.

      DJ.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Maria, it is up to each of us....one act of kindness and justice at a time, until we are a tidal wave of change.

      Thank you for your kind and loving heart.

      blessings always

      bill

    • Lastheart profile image

      Maria Magdalena Ruiz O'Farrill 4 years ago from Borikén the great land of the valiant and noble Lord

      I know your commitment will have many fruits...I see it already Bill. Tears are filling my eyes as I write this because your words are filled with truth and love.

      Very good quote you selected: “I find hope in the darkest of days, and focus in the brightest. I do not judge the universe.”

      Dalai Lama

      May the blessings of our Creator, Savior and Lord keep inspiring your heart!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      drbj....I love it...pensive. I'm going to go tell Bev now. LOL Thank you my friend....you are as loyal as they come.

    • drbj profile image

      drbj and sherry 4 years ago from south Florida

      What a great idea those community gardens/food forests are, Bill. Thanks for sharing that information. And you do not look grumpy in your photo, m'dear. You simply look pensive!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Insightful.....you can find H.O.W. on Facebook...we would love to have you join us. As for the tshirt, it is still in design stage, but eventually we will sell them and the proceeds will go to a worthy cause. :) Thanks and I'll check out your gauntlet. :)

    • Insightful Tiger profile image

      Insightful Tiger 4 years ago

      Ahah! Now I know what H.O.W. is! I love it! I will have to find your original hub about the movement. Nice shirt by the way :) Where can we get one? Do the proceeds go anywhere?

      I wish I could go to Seattle and visit that forest. I heard about it a while ago too.

      This hub gives me an idea for another hub. A "restore your faith in humanity" hub. Thanks for sharing!

      And uhh... by the way... this is totally off topic, brother, but I ...uhh....dropped a gauntlet for you back at my zinger smoothie hub. Thought I should let you know in case you want to pick it up ;)

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Deb, you are right about that...it takes time. Major changes do not happen overnight and I keep seeking patience on this journey.

      Thanks my friend and have a great weekend at Boomer Lake.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thanks Phoenix....I'll talk to Mark and see what he can do with it. :) Have a great weekend.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      We HAVE to be that change, for it is too late for anything else. We must rise up, squash all odds, and flow like a river. And we will. It takes time for the flood to permeate the masses.

    • phoenix2327 profile image

      Zulma Burgos-Dudgeon 4 years ago from United Kingdom

      Regarding the shirt design, instead of a square shape how about a circular one to complement the shape of the planet and the figures? It might give it a softer look.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Oh Rasma, handsome was never in my description but thank you anyway. As for the picture on the tshirt, I'm going to have to play with it. That is the symbol of H.O.W. so I'm going to have to make it work somehow. :) Thank you and have a great weekend.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Phoenix, I do believe we could learn from history my friend and yes, communities did do it way back when. Let's hope it catches on widespread. :) Thank you and have a great weekend.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      LOL...Randi, whatever you are doing it's good enough to beat me. :)

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Lizzy, a drive through Wenatchee in the fall is unbelievable. So many apples and fruit stands all over the place. You should come sometime. :)

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Ruchi, your last statement was excellent...contribution means growth. :) Thank you!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Cat, I love that you are going to mention this at your next Village Meeting. Thank you for taking a positive action that may help other. I really appreciate your kind words about my writing. That's what I want to do....inspire others. :) Have a great weekend my friend.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Poolman, I remember helping with canning season when I was very little, and the old mason jars that lined the shelves. Where have those days gone my friend? :) Thanks for the memory.

    • Gypsy Rose Lee profile image

      Gypsy Rose Lee 4 years ago from Riga, Latvia

      Bill great as always and you are so right that it is important to reach out and help others and to do the best we can. The T-shirt is not bad but kinda dark pic. Maybe a pic of two hands reaching out from either side and coming together in the middle in a hand clasp. Just saying. Anyway passing this on and yes, you should of been smiling in the pic nevertheless you are still a handsome fellow. Hope you and Bev have a great weekend.

    • phoenix2327 profile image

      Zulma Burgos-Dudgeon 4 years ago from United Kingdom

      A lovely idea. We have something similar here called allotments. People can apply to have a small parcel of land to cultivate fruit and veg. When people are working together towards a common goal, i.e. a bountiful harvest, they tend to bond, share advice and look after each other's allotments. Then when it's time to harvest they share their food with each other. It's this how communities began way back when?

    • Mhatter99 profile image

      Martin Kloess 4 years ago from San Francisco

      Thank you for this. During my time I accomplished a lot. How do you think I was made a 33rd degree mason.

    • btrbell profile image

      Randi Benlulu 4 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Just read your comment....lol...I'm really not that good, just lucky. I don't have the "keyswipe" on the game, that's why less mistakes. I actually spell the words out! When I comment from my phone, I allow auto correct to mess me up! And, as you can see, I haven't been following your directions and proofreading before I press submit.

    • Radcliff profile image

      Liz Davis 4 years ago from Hudson, FL

      That food forest is going to be amazing. I remember buying fruit from Pike Place and freaking out over the perfect apples and peaches. You guys are so lucky!

      I'm tired, so I can't think of anything profound to say. Keep on rockin', Billy.

    • Ruchi Urvashi profile image

      Ruchi Urvashi 4 years ago from Singapore

      Contribution to the community is a good way of giving to something beyond our self. When we are contributing, we are growing. Very good article. Keep it up.

    • Cantuhearmescream profile image

      Cat 4 years ago from New York

      Billy,

      HOW = WOW! I don't know if I'm lacking sleep or what, but I kid you not, my eyes have this warm wet sensation after reading this. God Billy! I know your message and I love everything that you stand for, but sometimes I just can't believe how inspiring you are. You know what I notice, there are 3 kinds of people... the people who say... I don't have to do anything about it because someone else already is/will, the people who say... Nobody else wants to do anything about it so I'm not going to either... and then there are the people who say, I don't care how many people aren't doing anything or how many people are... I'm GOING to! We can all find a reason not to do anything... if we want to do something, bitching isn't the answer... actions are. I love this idea. I don't know if it would work in my community, but I am definitely going to bring it up at the next Village Meeting. Thanks Billy, you are super awesom... and yeah, smile for the next picture! :-)

      Up, awesome, beautiful and interesting!

      Cat

    • profile image

      Old Poolman 4 years ago

      Bill, you must remember "canning season" where the ladies canned much of the surplus out of the garden? That is what we ate during the winter when the garden was under a couple feet of snow. We also had a room in the basement painted black and sealed from the light. That is where all the extra potatoes were stored for winter eating.

      It was a lot of work but made for some darn good eating and fed a bunch of people.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Bill, it's beyond me why every city in America doesn't do something like this. A half acre can feed hundreds of people...one half acre! Imagine what we could do in this country to relieve hunger if more people would step up and make a difference.

      Thanks buddy and have a great weekend.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Nell, I love it....the princess of the tower! That is priceless. Seriously, how many people throw out potatoes that are going to seed? What a waste. Plant that potato and five more will grow.....we must make it happen, Carol....and we will. :)

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Carol, there are quite a few communities here on the west coast where this type of thing is being done....why there aren't more is anybody's guess....but maybe by raising awareness we can get it to happen.

      Thanks Carol....you are a gem!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Mercury, thank you very much. If you would like to join H.O.W., friend me on Facebook (Bill Holland) and I'll invite you into the group.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      DJ, my friend....I'm with you...and honored to be by your side.

      This is all common sense, isn't it? I shake my head and wonder why more stuff like this isn't being done? How much effort does it take to start up a community garden? Why aren't all churches with a little bit of property doing this? Why isn't ever city in America doing this? So very simple, DJ. It drives me crazy sometimes thinking of the good that could be done if someone would just step up and begin.

      Anyway, thank you. You are a good person and I'm proud to call you my friend.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Kas, you can find H.O.W. on Facebook my friend....friend me on Facebook and I'll send you an invitation to our group. I started it about six months ago....just a group that raises awareness about making this world a better place to live. :) Thanks my friend.

    • bdegiulio profile image

      Bill De Giulio 4 years ago from Massachusetts

      Hi Bill. What a great idea. More communities should be doing this. I'll have check around in my area to see if this is happening here. If it's not it should be. Many thanks for reminding us that there is some good in this world.

    • Nell Rose profile image

      Nell Rose 4 years ago from England

      Hi billy, I think its a great idea. I live next to an allotment, and only today I lugged a huge bag of 'stale' potatoes over to a gardener and said, do you want these to plant? so he grabbed them! lol! and when they grow again we will get some back! we tend to do that on the allotment, even though I haven't got one, they all know me now. They call me the princess in the tower! haha! as my kitchen window is on the second floor and they all wave up at me! its great, and lovely too, nell

    • carol7777 profile image

      carol stanley 4 years ago from Arizona

      What a lovely idea...At least people will not go hungry.....It will be nice to see more communities gathering to help. Thanks for sharing this Bill as a reminder there are many good people out there...I guess it is the west coast people who are the best.

    • mercuryservices profile image

      Alex Munkachy 4 years ago from Honolulu, Hawaii

      excellent work.

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      DJ Anderson 4 years ago

      Bill, sometimes your hubs leave me speechless. You pass along simple ideas that should have been implemented all along. How could we have drifted so far away from basic principles of life renewing knowledge?

      This is Life Lesson 101.........caring for others in need.

      We watched our parents plant their gardens, in excess of what we needed and it was always shared with a family in need.

      There was no Salvation Army or charities or even any gently used clothing stores. Cloths got passed along again and again, and then they were used for dust cloths. In other words, we did not live in a world of excess.

      You are a smart man, Bill Holland. You bring forth common sense ideas that got lost somewhere through the years. You are bringing it to our attention and it sounds feasible. Not only does it sound feasible, it

      leaves us scratching our heads thinking, why didn't I think of that?

      Bill, you are plugged in to your surroundings, and obviously better in tune to the needs of the people. We applaud you for having the courage to speak up and the words of wisdom to encourage us to join your efforts.

      The mighty river starts with a gentle rain fall.

      A smile can be the beginning of a life long friendship.

      The world can be changed by the vision of a single man

      whose heart is filled with compassion for those in need.

      Yes, working together, we can make the world a better place.

      I am ready to put my money where my mouth is!

      I will take a pledge, here and now, that.....

      "I will use my time and talents to make a difference in someone's life. This shall be an ongoing process, as long as I am physically capable."

      DJ. Anderson

      Who will join this effort..............?

      Thank you, Bill, for bringing us back to the basics of humanity.

      DJ.

    • Kasman profile image

      Kas 4 years ago from Bartlett, Tennessee

      I keep hearing about H.O.W. over and over again in so many places I look. I've never understood what it was all about. I'm going to have to research some hubs to get what's going on here. It seems like a wonderful humanitarian effort! I do love the idea of an edible forest though.....kinda reminds me of Willie Wonka's chocolate factory but on a healthy scale.

      Funnily enough it also slightly reminds me of a command in the Bible's old testament where God commands Israelites to leave the outer portion of their grainfields for the poor to glean from. What does gleaning entail? Working for your food.....so that no matter what, the poor would be able to eat and still feel like a human being doing a hard day's work for what they got. Voting this up Bill and I'm definitely sharing!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      vkwok, it is indeed, but oh so enjoyable.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      LOL...Annie, we'll leave the light on for you. :)

    • vkwok profile image

      Victor W. Kwok 4 years ago from Hawaii

      Awesome article. You are right about times getting tough.

    • Annie Miller profile image

      Annie Miller 4 years ago from Wichita Falls, Texas

      If we have to hitch hike we will be back, one day!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thanks Annie! I love it here and I know you would as well....we'll be here waiting for you.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      And that is why, PS, I admire you so much. You are so very right....it is emerging and brighter days are ahead for all of us.

      Blessings and a hug...you earned them for this comment.

      bill

    • Annie Miller profile image

      Annie Miller 4 years ago from Wichita Falls, Texas

      Gosh, this makes me miss the Pacific Northwest so much.

      Great Hub, Bill.

    • pstraubie48 profile image

      Patricia Scott 4 years ago from sunny Florida

      And that is why, Bill, my belief in the ultimate good remains...because we do see the sense of community emerging. Thank you for sharing this...I could go on and on but no words can top what you have written. :)

      Hoping the Angels are finding you and Bev this afternoon. ps

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Leslie, it seems to me to be a no-brainer that churches would participate in something like this....aren't they all about giving to the needy and feeding the hungry????

      As for welfare recipients....I firmly believe that people will feel better about themselves if they are active and have a purpose. Standing in a welfare line does not add purpose to a life...being productive does. :)

      Thanks Sis! I hope you are well my friend.

    • ImKarn23 profile image

      Karen Silverman 4 years ago

      what a great article - and a great idea - of which i have heard of before - urban gardens is what they called the article i read...

      i think that MORE churches should offer land for such a worthy cause - and others!

      after all - they aren't paying taxes on it and - people are in NEED!! If churches can't set an example with something that costs them nothing - then really....what are they for exactly?

      great inspiration, Bill-bro! You talk, it walk, it - and stir it up!

      i love it!

      i've always believed that welfare recipients should be giving back where they can - it's a win-win situation..

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Manatita, all I could do when I saw that picture was laugh....oh well, looks are not important, right? Thanks my friend for the visit.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Janine, never apologize for taking care of your daughters. I know very well how supportive you are and I appreciate you greatly. Give those girls a hug for me. :)

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      It would indeed, Poolman. I'm a big dreamer. :)

    • manatita44 profile image

      manatita44 4 years ago from london

      Yes, Bill,

      You said it. This is not your best pic. Still, its infinitely more important that you showed the courage and simplicity, as well as the wisdom to be aware of its effect. God bless all wholesome and loving communities.

    • Janine Huldie profile image

      Janine Huldie 4 years ago from New York, New York

      Loved the picture of you in your HOW T-shirt and seriously you made me smile with the caption, too. I am so with you on this one Bill and sorry I had to take the girls for a well checkup this morning and trying to catch up a bit in between dropping Emma at pre-school. But wanted you to know I do very much support you as always on this wonderful cause. Voted up, shared and wishing you a wonderful day now!!

    • profile image

      Old Poolman 4 years ago

      Bill, without dreams life would be boring.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Poolman, the same thought crossed my mind....but we can always dream, right?

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thanks Mark, and this tshirt is going to sell once I find the time, and then I'm going to pay you for your creation....I will never forget the work you have done for H.O.W.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      LOL...I caught it Randi. I wish you made mistakes like that on Words With Friends on Facebook so I could win a game. :)

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Lurana, the food forest is pure genius in its simplicity and so doable for every city. Now we just have to spread the word. :) Thank you my friend.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thanks Randi! I've been thinking about the tshirt for quite some time. As soon as I have the time I'll play with it awhile and then offer it to everyone interested.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Faith, all it takes is a group of determined people willing to get something like this started....it could be done in every city in America, but it takes people like you and me willing to get it started.

      Blessings to you my friend

      bill

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Mike and thanks for stopping by. As soon as I find a tshirt that looks just right I will make them available to everyone.

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      Old Poolman 4 years ago

      Bill, what a great thought having some welfare recipients building and maintaining community gardens. They would feel better about themselves and the communities would benefit.

      However, my bet is we would not have many volunteers for this project.

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      Mark G Weller 4 years ago from Lake Charles, LA.

      Awesome Bill, food gardens and community projects are something every town and city should have/focus on!

      Mark

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      Randi Benlulu 4 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      BTW, although the first is good, I meant to say "food", lol!

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      Lurana Brown 4 years ago from Chicagoland, Illinois

      I absolutely love the Food Forest idea and shared the original story on Facebook. Community gardens are beautiful things. Thanks for another inspiring call to action---you know I'm with you!

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      Randi Benlulu 4 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      A good forest! What a novel idea. So simple yet not thought of before. Great article and ideas, Bill! The t shirt is a great users both to build community and awareness and a way to bring donations. Great job here, Bill! Up++ and sharing!

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      Faith Reaper 4 years ago from southern USA

      Now that is HOW it is done!!! How inspirational to say the least! All cities, towns, etc. in the US should do this very project!

      I love that quote Mother Teresa quoted from the Bible at Matthew 15:35, and that is what I think of when I am choosing a ministry in which to serve.

      Peace and blessings, Faith Reaper

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Jim, I'll bet there is a long list of community activities in Eugene....that city is very much like Olympia in that way....giving people who are aware of what needs to be done and then they do it.

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Aww, thanks Sheri! It's funny, but this is how I was raised. I don't see anything special in helping people. To me, that's what we all should be doing, right? How did we get to the point where it appears special that someone helps another? Sigh! Anyway, I think you are special and I appreciate you very much.

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      Mr Archer 4 years ago from Missouri

      What a wonderful thing your community is doing. I love the idea of working together on a food plot, or gardening area where you can come and help or harvest.

      Personally, I like the shirt. When you get it right let us know. I know I would wear it proudly!

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Poolman, I have often thought the same things. I don't remember people starving in our community...there weren't even any homeless. No lines at welfare back then.....I want to see people working. Maybe we could pay people to build community gardens instead of giving them money to do nothing.....just a thought.

      Thanks buddy. I always enjoy your comments.

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Jackie! Not sure what I was thinking when that picture was taking but I scared myself. LOL Anyway, God bless you my friend and have a great day.

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      Sheri Dusseault 4 years ago from Chemainus. BC, Canada

      Billy! I love that Seattle garden. It seems crazy there is hunger when the God's green earth is so very abundant. Plant a seed and miracles happen. I LOVE that you are reading and plugged The Cultural Creatives...I knew you were one and I bet most of your followers are too. Be the change you want to see in the world! (Ghadi) Keep uo changing the world my friend. You are truly an inspiration!

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      Jim Higgins 4 years ago from Eugene, Oregon

      Bill, you are truly an inspiration on HP and far beyond. This is a beautiful, inspirational and informative article which makes me want to look for some of the many great things going on in my community of Eugene and sharing them.

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      Old Poolman 4 years ago

      Bill, this hub brings back memories of the days when friends helped friends, and neighbors helped neighbors. We did this, just because that is the way it was supposed to be.

      As you are aware, this has all changed. When and why it changed I have no idea. Because of the numerous welfare agencies presently in existance, many now feel that it is the agencies job to help their friends and neighbors.

      Even worse, many today don't even know their neighbors name.

      Back when I was a child, we all planted gardens that would produce far more food than we could possibly use. This surplus food was made available for anyone who needed or wanted extra food for their table.

      I would personally like to see some of the welfare agencies go away, and people stepping up to take their place.

      Even in the worst of times, I don't recall any of my friends or neighbors who went hungry or starved to death, and this was totally without government assistance programs.

      Could we get back to those days? I doubt it because we now have generations of people who have no knowledge of providing this assistance on their own without help from the government.

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      Jackie Lynnley 4 years ago from The Beautiful South

      You did look a bit grumpy...maybe if you stood on your head we would see a smile, lol, J/K you.

      Loved this write. It is wonderful what your city is doing and if just every city would do that....what a wonderful world this would be! God bless you billybuc!

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      MsDora, Bravo to you for walking the talk. Thank you for caring so much. I am proud to be your friend.

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Joe, it's a good day to be alive and I know you echo that completely. March on my friend. I'll be right there next to you. We can and must make a difference.

      Aloha buddy

      bill

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Jeff, I appreciate that my friend. Thank you and I hope your day is filled with wonder.

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      Dora Isaac Weithers 4 years ago from The Caribbean

      Very timely appeal to people who really care about others. A few minutes ago I signed up to help clean up my community. Your article gives me a boost. Thanks as always for your commitment to positive change.

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Good morning Sha! We don't have tshirts available. I just ordered one to see what it would look like and I don't think I like how it turned out. I may try a couple other shirts before settling on one. I'll let you know.

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      Hawaiian Odysseus 4 years ago from Southeast Washington state

      Good morning, my friend! Yes, indeed, there is a growing collective, and I love it! I am so proud of my former city of residence, Seattle, for yet another project that truly makes a difference. 10 to 1, the project didn't find its conception in the back-slapping, good ol' boys and girls elitist group of politicians meetings, but, rather, in the hearts of community activists who said, "It's time we did something about this!" Thanks for yet another rousing battle call in the war against self-centeredness, Bill! I'm proud to be a rank and file making a difference soldier! Aloha, my friend!

      Joe

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      JThomp42 4 years ago

      Amazing as always Bill. Here's wishing you a great day my friend!!

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      Shauna L Bowling 4 years ago from Central Florida

      Bill, I wasn't aware we have t-shirts. H.O.W. can I get one?