“Thus began Richard in West Marin: He had ideas, he invented, he petitioned. He studied, learned, asked questions and offered pragmatic ideas, always with a smile and good humor.” — The Point Reyes Light
I love the above reporter’s description of Richard Kirschman as a person who invents new things as well as petitions for acceptance of new ideas. He is an activist who’s been impatient and frustrated with bureaucracies all his life, yet he believes in the power of local community and what it takes to introduce the possibility of radical change. Plus he’s a persistent SOB when you come down to it.
Let’s look at three remarkable examples:
GIVING THROUGH YOUTH: Teaching Kids Philanthropy
For some years, Richard had this Great Idea to do more than send personal checks and other contributions to charities he believed in. Instead, he wanted to give money to children in nearby schools and let them decide what to do with it.
At first he asked teachers to set up a curriculum in which students could learn about philanthropy. The kids wouldn’t just read about it; they’d contribute actual cash to a cause that they themselves had investigated, argued for and eventually voted on. That level of engagement would invite a personal understanding of the value of charity, a word that could use a little updating, inspiration-wise . (more…)