In 2007, I wrote a book called Giving, in which I said that all people had something to give to make a difference in the lives of others, whether it was money, time or skills. I told the stories of individuals young and old, from affluent backgrounds and poor communities alike, who had done something to change the world.
Today, I am even more confident that small actions make a big difference. A day after President Barack Obama announced that President George W. Bush and I would be establishing a fund, my office received a call from a store owner in Indiana who had placed a 5-gallon jar on the counter to raise money for relief efforts. The jar was filling so quickly, he was calling to find out the best way to transfer the money to the Clinton Bush Haiti Fund.
We've received many calls from people with similar hopes and stories, with offers of services and goods and whatever money they can spare, people who want to make a difference but don't have the ability to write big checks. With innovation in technology, texting is making it easier than ever to give, raising millions of dollars for the Red Cross and other relief funds.
Once the emergency passes, together we can help the Haitian people pick up where they left off to build Haiti back better, with new opportunities for jobs, healthcare, education, clean energy and trade. It won't be easy. It won't be quick. And it will take a lot more 5-gallon jars. But it all begins with one action, large or small, to help an entire nation reach its destiny.
To donate to the Clinton Bush Haiti Fund, visit www.ClintonBushHaitiFund.org. Or, text QUAKE to 20222 to donate $10 to Haiti relief through the Clinton Bush Haiti Fund.