When I attend conferences, one of my favorite things to do is visit every booth in the exhibit hall and learn about all the organizations that are represented.
Yeah, not really.
But, two years ago my sister won an iPad as the result of a little contest one of my favorite conferences, Orphan Summit put on. They provided a list of all the exhibitors and told us that if you could convince 20 exhibitors to initial your list, you could win something.
I wasn't planning on attempting this great and noble feat, but I had a 4 year old who was tired of sitting in workshops and a sister who thought she would win. Her dream was contagious.
The end result: I found myself wandering up and down the exhibit hall aisles. Aisles filled with booths from really great organizations doing amazing things all over the world to help orphans. As we walked we subtlety tried to catch exhibitors eyes and coerce them to sign our paper.
Besides learning that every single person in the orphan care community has some link to Zambia, I managed to obtain 20 sets of initials. And thus, found myself entered in a contest to win a prize.
Low and behold, they called my name. I did not win the iPad, but I did win a children's book entitled Walter's Flying Bus by Ed Strauss and Josiah Thiesen.
Walter's Flying Bus is a special book. It is the story of a boy in Uganda and his friends. They each have a dream and a special gift that turns an abandoned bus into a vehicle that delivers each one to their forever families.
Even better, this book is available as an interactive e-book that you can buy as an iPhone/iPad app for only $.99 (for a limited time).
It is amazing. Seriously, I LOVE the app and so do my kids. It is a prime example of how art can be used to inspire and change lives; and it is a great way to expose and inspire your own kids. A way to plant a seed in their hearts to care for and love on the orphaned.
To top it all off, 100% of the after-tax profits from the app sales go towards efforts helping special needs orphans around the world.
So while I may have "won" at Summit 9 this year, you can win too. And help orphans at the same time. And if you share this with your friends, they can win too!
It's a win-win-win-win-win. :)