What happens when 15 philanthropists are in the same house? They make a difference. That's exactly what happened this December in Mazatlan, Mexico. When we first arrived there at Elizabeth Porras's house, we were all very excited to teach both kids and adults about philanthropy, volunteerism, and entrepreneurship. We were giving the PAVE program to people who have never been told to give to others before.
Michael Houlihan and Bonnie Harvey, founders of the Barefoot Wine brand, gave a presentation to the local university about entrepreneurship and how social entrepreneurship is the way to bring in the largest audience while making the most impact. As the weeks went on, we traveled to surrounding villages where poverty was an obvious issue. We heard the story of a woman who gave free tae kwon do lessons to the kids of the village to remind them that they can still do a lot with their lives. We told these impoverished kids about the impact of helping others however you can. They understood that they were poor, but that didn't stop them from having a philanthropic spirit. The philanthropists I had mentioned about and I (along with some university students who heard the entrepreneurship presentation) went to repaint and renovate a school that the kids went to. As we were helping them, the children came out of their homes and began to paint and build with us. They took what we said to heart, and they wanted to help. We gave a very quick version of the PAVE program to these kids, and instantly we saw that they wanted to help however they could. That's the power of PAVE.