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It's "where big ideas meet new media to create innovative solutions" as Mashable one of the co-hosts put it. This past weekend the United Nations Foundation, Mashable and other notable hosts* threw the event in New York City and I was invited to attend on account of my advocacy with the UN Foundation's Shot at Life campaign - an effort to raise awareness and funds for access to vaccines in the developing world.
Basically, the summit is a 3-day reminder that way too many people around the globe live in dire need and by dire I don't mean it's 11:00 at night and there's nothing to pack for school lunch the next day or 10 loads of dirty laundry between you and your pillow. Big thinkers, journalists, academics, world leaders, the occasional movie actor and other speakers participated in a "global conversation," the conversation occurring on the stage in 5 to 15 minute interview sessions.**
Check out the speaker list, cool, right? Did I mention that these many short conversations happened one after the other for most of the day and into the evening. That's a lot of poverty, climate change, malaria and human trafficking.
Very cool. Shot at Life has entered social media for real now! Hey, if you haven't joined the global health movement, it's not too late. You can be the 137,029th person to join over at ShotatLife.org. What, you waiting to be #150,000?
Grab your popcorn and pretend you're in the audience by perusing the highlights on video or print. Read the Memorable Quotes from each day:
Yes Nick Krisfof spoke yesterday and out of deference to my friend Nicole, Third Eye Mom, I will say that when he's not misinterpreting chemical studies, I'm a fan.
On Thursday I'll be tweeting live from the United Nations. I'm honored to attend a pep rally for the near polio eradication - Our Commitment to the Next Generation: The Legacy of a Polio-Free World in the ECOSOC Chamber. In other words, I'll be escorted through security to The Chamber and hopefully not immediately back out. That would be the Economic and Social Council Chamber, not the secret Harry Potter one.
In case you missed it, polio has been nearly wiped off the face of earth. Seriously. The door is closing and we, yeah, you too, have the chance to slam it shut for good. Look around the family tree and neighborhood, bet there's someone who's been affected by polio like my father-in-law who contracted it at 16. My father still remembers being afraid about getting the virus. The good news, for $5 you and me and the boy down the street can give a child life-long protection from polio and in doing so, shut that door.
* Ericsson, UNDP, the 92nd Street Y and last but not least the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
** In the Digital Media Lounge, temporary digs for the digital social media makers (e.g. bloggers) it turned out actual conversation was not so welcomed as demonstrated by frownie faces and swishing of power cords, a trend I think could be tweaked for Social Good Summit 2013? My fellow online friends, how about we spread a little more Social Good next time.
Funny how we were so intent on spreading social good around the globe we seemed to forget our more immediate environs. Ahh, it's never too late to brush up on social skills...bestill my inner shrink.
As for the mini-sessions I now know what it feels like to be slightly ADHD as I struggled to orient myself for each new topic every few minutes. Can you say difficulty transitioning? Check. Loss of focus? Check. Fidgeting? Check.
Enough of me, go shut the door.