by Lucy Leitner
While most of us are thinking about the upcoming elections or which recently deceased celebrity they should zombify this Halloween, the good people at the Steeltown Entertainment Project have chosen a more well-intentioned, less divisive route this fall.
Steeltown, the local non-profit dedicated to building a sustainable and vibrant film industry in Southwestern Pennsylvania, and the Fetzer Institute, whose mission statement about the power of love as a tool for good reads almost like the lyrics to The Youngbloods’ “Get Together,” have teamed up to sponsor the “What in the World are You Doing?” competition. Non-profits and NGOs from all over the world have the opportunity to win $25,000 by submitting a video depicting how they promote love and forgiveness. All entries will be featured online in the Global Gallery of Love and Forgiveness where the public can vote on which video they love the most.
“This really is an incredible opportunity for nonprofits to have their work showcased as some of the best humanity has to offer,” said Lauren Rice, Program Manager of the contest at Steeltown. “We’re asking them to think about the connection between love and action in their work — whether they’re building houses, teaching, planting community gardens or countless other good works. Concern for others – love – is what moves people to spend their time helping others. We’re asking NGOs and nonprofits to recognize and share that.”
This agape-inspired competition is in its first year and Steeltown was all too happy to take the helm of this exercise in altruism.
Gregg Behr, executive director of Pittsburgh’s Grable Foundation, also serves as an advisor to Fetzer’s NGO advisory council. He was familiar with Steeltown’s work in promoting awareness of important causes, particularly the similar combination of film production and altruism that Steeltown used in the Take a Shot at Changing the World competition. Mr. Behr approached the Entertainment Project and the Oakland-based non-profit agreed to serve as producer of the competition.
The contest is open to any NGO or non-profit that is making the world a better place. Entrants must submit their videos by January 31, but, as the website indicates, the earlier the submission, the more views it will receive, thus the better its chances of becoming the “Most Loved.”
For updates, follow on the contest on Twitter @Tell_Us_World