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Kotori Co-Founder and Editor at Large Wasim Muklashy Launches Sustaining Phocus

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Project to cover global sustainable farming, funded solely by contributions through Kickstarter!

If you want me to spare the speech, you can go directly to:

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1552179392/sustaining-phocus

If you like speeches...here goes...I know it's not often I reach out in this sort of fashion, and I know it's probably been quite a while since a lot of you have even heard from me, so you KNOW it has to be important right!?? (just kidding…sort of…) Anyhow, it's been a bit of a interesting first half of the year that has all sort of led to this note. A quick rundown, the magazine I was working for had to shut its doors in May, and I've been freelancing ever since, and I couldn't help but feel that after years and years and years of sitting behind computer screens for 16 hours a day, this is the perfect time and opportunity to get about the world and try to help and make a difference first hand and, well, see some things.

I don't know how much you all know about me, but if you've had contact with me at any point in the past two decades, you'll know that there's nothing I get more passionate about than ideas and projects and moves that I feel help change the world for the better. I'm sure I've been in heated conversations and discussions with most of you on everything from politics to environmentalism to foreign policy to poverty…you name it. Well, I'm finally taking another step to try to realize some of those desires.

That's where this project comes into play. If you've heard of Kickstarter, then you're familiar with the way it works and the enormous waves it's been making in the world of crowd sourced funding for amazing projects all over the world. If you haven't heard of Kickstarter, the basic idea is this… people put together creative projects and they put them out to the public to fund them through micro-donations that can range from $1 to thousands. Amazing projects are being funded on a daily basis and it's working,  so I figured I wanted to give it a shot with something I felt important.

Well, one thing that I've been super super interested in and intrigued by ever since my failed attempt at opening an organic cafe several years ago is the idea of organic farming and sustainable living practices. The more I look into it and learn about it, the more I see and realize how much of a positive impact it's making in communities all over the world. The idea that there are alternatives that are healthier and far more productive to a bright future is one that drives my every move and in this case, after doing the research and seeing the Greendex report that National Geographic helped put out just a few weeks ago that amongst the world's developed countries, the United States, the world's wealthiest country, ranks DEAD LAST in sustainability, I had to see what was going on for myself. And that's where this project comes in.

Over the course of 6 months, I plan to use the resources provided by World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms (www.wwoof.org) to visit and spend at least 2 weeks working on an organic sustainable farm on each of the planet's continents that have them (haven't been able to find any on the south pole just yet...). The aim is to put together a photo essay book and interactive elements, including videos and blogs, telling their stories through my eyes, someone who's a complete outsider to the whole thing. My profession has enabled me to become quite confident in my writing, photography, and video skills, and I figure after 12 years doing it all for other people, it's optimal time to use those skills for something that I actually hold dear to myself and that I feel can help the future of our planet in at least a small tangible way.

Anyway, rather than waste any more valuable epaper space, here's that link to the project again:

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1552179392/sustaining-phocus

Please, if you have it in you to donate even just $1, that will go a looooong way to make this thing happen. And please pass this along to anyone you know that might be interested in helping out. That's how most of these things get funded…word of mouth...

Help me save the worllldddddd!!!!

And if you have any questions at all, please do not hesitate in the least to get in touch with me. I'd absolutely love to discuss with you anything you have in mind. 

Humbly,

wasim muklashy
wasim.muklashy@gmail.com
 

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