Keith started a new tradition in Marbella. The last Wednesday of every month, twitterers around the Costa del Sol gather for a drink and networking at a bar in Nueva Andalucia. We call it TweetupMarbella. The atmosphere is relaxed, friendly and everybody seems to enjoy putting a face to some obscure twitter names.
This past Wednesday, a special guest attended the event. His name is Bjorn Heidenstrom. Bjorn is an ex-football player from Norway on a mission to raise awareness for the Norwegian Refugee Council. He plans to do so by cycling from Norway to South Africa, collecting football shirts along the way, then creating the largest football shirt in the world as a patchwork of all the shirts gathered and exposing it during the 2010 World Cup. Bjorn´s initiative has already received the approval of FIFA and the World Cup authorities. More information about his adventure can be found at www.theshirt2010.net or following him on twitter @heidenstrom.
In a world saturated by information, it is very hard for any idea to raise above the background noise. Usually, money is the main differentiator as it can muster resources and advertising power. There are alternatives however that can palliate the lack of funds and they all have to do with creativity and brain power.
Bjorn has been able to capture the collective attention with a subtle mixture of a noble cause (40 million refugees in the world), opportunistic timing (first World Cup in Africa) , a popular and mobilizing sport (football), a little craziness (you just have to meet the guy) and a compelling personal involvement (his cycling prowess). His initiative is a great example of how brain power combined with passion and careful implementation can lead to significant achievement. It is an inspiration to be followed in any aspect of life one cares about, be it charity, business, family…
Marbella Family enjoyed meeting Bjorn, wishes him great success in South Africa and hopes that his journey will help bring some relief to all the innocent people chased away from their homes for being at the wrong place at the wrong time. As a westerner, it is sometimes difficult to relate to refugees at the other end of the planet. It is hard to believe that this could happen to us one day. However, we should remember it happened not so long ago to some of our parents in Europe and that the future is unpredictable…
We think Bjorn will have achieved a lot if he can gather a little empathy from us all, and some support in terms of donations or simply in helping raise awareness for the plight of refugees (just forward to your friends). Get ready for the World Cup, help Bjorn!
Filed under: Life in Marbella | Tagged: charity, football, innovation, Marbella | 2 Comments »