I was born and raised in Ohio, and though I now live in Washington, D.C. I will always be an Ohioan.
As my friends and family know my social and community change journeys usually take me to places far away from the United States. I have been privileged to participate in community based projects and witness first hand the determination, optimism and hope of Africans across the African continent. Its shaped me in many ways, and specifically helped me to realize the many things that we take for granted in the greatest country in the world, America.
Yet, in the years before traveling to Africa it was my experiences volunteering in local political campaigns in Lorain County (Ohio), organizing student education forums and voter registration drives in high-school, and interning for the Democratic Party in Washington, D.C. where I first caught a glimpse what individuals and their communities can do to effect positive change.
However, over the course of the 5 years since my journeys commenced in Africa, here at home... here in the United States... Americans have experienced one disappointment after the next. In fact, for many Americans the American Dream has vanished. Their homes are foreclosed, grocery bills climb, and filling up the tank takes a hearty chunk out of the pay-check. All the while, unemployment in places like Ohio is over 7 percent(the highest it been since December 1992).
But, rather than continue to hang these problems on the proverbial blogsphere laundry line, over the course of the next 19 days I'll use this blog to document my homecoming... campaigning for Barack Obama in OHIO. I am doing this because I believe that we can do better as a country and we will do better when we are open to new ideas, approaches and solutions for our shared future. This is why I support Barack Obama for President, and Joe Biden for Vice-President.
Fortunately, the many members of the "global family" to get Obama elected enabled my trip to the land of the Buckeyes, the home of Rock 'n' Roll, and now Joe the Plumber.
What happened was this... earlier this year I was fortunate to be selected as a Starting Bloc fellow (check them out, great organization and great people) and when an email from the founders (read: entrepreneurs) of Travel for Change came across the list-serve, I went right to the TFC website.
After sending an mail to TFC staff, setting up my profile and speaking with them over the phone I received an email. A generous donor from Austin agreed to donate her frequent flier miles so that I could travel from D.C. to Columbus, Ohio for the remaining 3 weeks of the campaign.
So, here I am. About 36 hours from pounding the pavement in Ohio and ready to help restore confidence, hope and effect change here at home. I am exited to get back home and help turn Ohio Blue for Obama.