5 thing that inspired me in 2012

I was having dinner with my family on New Year’s Eve when my mother asked whether we had decided on any resolutions for 2013. Her resolutions were what I would consider fairly typical resolutions; multiple servings of veggies a day and more time spent on the yoga mat. My stepfather, a financial controller and compulsive joker replied, “I’m going to make a list of all the things that went right in 2012 and back date them.”  And while his wit didn’t make me laugh out loud, he got me thinking about all the things that went right in 2012 and I made a list of my favorites. So here are just five of those things in 2012 that kept me inspired throughout the year and continue to keep me looking forward to the future.

1 - YESS Light Show

Being one of those “creative types” the light show that celebrated the Youth Empowerment & Support Services 30th anniversary and re-launch was one of the first things to come to my mind.  It was a brilliant and creative way to tell the story of YESS and to my knowledge one of the first times something like this has been made in the Edmonton area.  If you haven’t seen it, the video will definitely make you smile. (That’s a good thing.)  

#2 - Make Jen’s Day

Speaking of smiling, #makejensday was a hashtag initiative which I have written about before so it didn’t surprise me that it made my list of awesome things that happened in 2012.  When Jennifer Banks, an Edmonton blogger asked her readers to make her day by giving to charity, then tell her about it, she inspired hundreds of people from across the country to participate.  It was a great example of a powerful call to action and the generosity of the people in our community.  And as a result, to date more than 380 acts of kindness and giving have been shared online!

#3 - United Way in a Parade 

Perhaps the most fun I had at work in 2012 was trying to film and photograph, at the same time, United Way’s Change Starts Here Crew as they marched, danced and sang in the Klondike Days parade.  It was exhausting and yet I had a great time doing it.  And the video didn’t turn out half-bad either!  

#4 - The Promise to End Child Poverty

As I was thinking back on all the really cool things that took place in 2012, Premier Redford’s commitment to ending child poverty in Alberta stands out as one of those things.  I think about the 10 Year Plan to End Homelessness and how successful that has been in rallying groups to achieve that goal.  As a result 1,800 people have been housed and I can’t help but be optimistic that this commitment to eliminate child poverty, something faced by 41,000 children in the Alberta Capital Region, will be just as beneficial to our community.

#5 - Make Something Edmonton

“If you have the courage to make something, Edmonton is your city.”

Since the beginning of October, I have been enthusiastically following the blog magpietown.com and its commentary on this special place called Edmonton.  The blog tackles such topics as: “Why Edmonton?”, “Audacity in Edmonton” and “How to teach a city about itself.” The articles are incredibly interesting on their own, but the discussion these articles have sparked about what it is that makes Edmonton an amazing city to live in, and why so many people have fallen in love with this city is both fascinating and inspirational. If you haven’t already, I encourage you to give it a look.  Just be ready to fall in love with Edmonton!

Now that’s just five of many.  I’m positive there are hundreds of other amazing things that happened in 2012 that are also worth mentioning, but I’ll leave that to you.  What are some of the things that inspired you in 2012 and what are you looking forward to in 2013?

David Odumade, Manager, New Media, United Way of the Alberta Capital Region is an avid guitarist and lover of all things musical. Except country. *shudders*