Eric Damon Walters
BENEFITING: ROOTS OF PEACE
War is hell, and its legacy extends long past the time the last soldier leaves. Countries like Vietnam, Cambodia and Croatia have been dealing with the repercussions of war for decades, particularly in the forms of landmines and economic devastation. I'm fundraising for Roots of Change, an NGO with the goal of clearing landmines in these and other war torn nations, including Afghanistan and Iraq, and then helping communities convert those lands into viable agricultural tracts--planting grapes and orchards in their stead.
I first learned about this organization sitting at the Bridgetender in Tahoe City, when i struck up a conversation with the guy sitting next to me. He had just gotten back from Afghanistan and was psyched about the de-mining initiatives. I used to spend a lot of energy jumping up and down and yelling to try and encourage political change, to stop war or to properly clean up after it. These days I prefer to devote my energy to making a difference where I can, and that starts by putting my money where my mouth is.