Thursday, July 5, 2012

The Bookworm's Picks

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A Year of Living Generously: Dispatches from the Front Lines of Philanthropy, by Lawrence Scanlan is a personal and powerful exploration of one man's discovery of what it means to find one’s self in service to others.

Can one person make a difference? When we write a cheque to a charity or volunteer at a food bank, we're part of the solution -- aren't we? The author went looking for answers to those questions. He selected twelve different charitable organizations and spent a month in each, and what he discovered during his year-long odyssey was the new face of philanthropy -- its players, its politics, its undeniable satisfactions and its fundamental perils. Scanlan uncovers unexpected stories, from his fellow builder-volunteers in post-Katrina New Orleans, to the challenges facing a women's radio station in West Africa, to the ongoing shame of homelessness in Canada. And he confronts some uncomfortable truths about the nature of personal engagement and the societal divide that allows us to look away. This fresh and critical look at diverse approaches to the troubles of the world's less fortunate demonstrates the compelling need for greater commitment and real connection from us all-individuals, philanthropists of every stripe, and government. 

About the Author

Lawrence Scanlan has won three National Magazine Awards and is the author or co-author of thirteen books, on subjects ranging from horses to hockey to country life. A book he co-authored with Monty Roberts -- The Man Who Listens to Horses -- has sold more than a million copies in North America. Involved in community service for some three decades, Scanlan lives in Kingston, ON.


"A thoughtful and thought-provoking book about some of the most crucial issues of the day, from poverty and homelessness to pollution and international development. [Scanlan] has given voice to the disenfranchised." (Montreal Gazette )

I would have to agree with the reviewer; this book is amazing! It leaves you with a lot to think about and I would recommend this as a good read to anyone who is interested in finding out about helping others in need. As the author puts forth, one person can make a difference, however small it may be, it's a beginning.

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