“Ends are not bad things, they just mean that something else is about to begin. And there are many things that don’t really end, anyway, they just begin again in a new way. Ends are not bad and many ends aren’t really an ending; some things are never-ending.”
― C. JoyBell C.
In early 2017, two women – Damyanti Biswas and Belinda McGrath Witzenhausen – came up with an idea for a monthly blogfest that would promote positivity and light in a world filled with too much darkness. Bloggers would share a positive story (person, place, organization, etc.) on the last Friday of every month in order to displace some of the ugliness of the world.
We are the World Blogfest (#WATWB) came to fruition at the end of March, 2017, and the response was great. The blog posts from around the world were beacons of light, focusing on heart-warming and inspiring stories of love, life and hope. At its peak, #WATWB was attracting 50 or more bloggers every month, with posts being shared via Facebook, Twitter and re-blogs. I was excited and honored to be asked to share hosting duties of reading and commenting on the posts of other bloggers. This was not a “job,” but rather a way to see the world differently and to embrace its wonderful people, communities and their combined actions that make the world a better place.
In the beginning, the goal was to make this a year-long blogfest. However, due to continued interest, one year turned into two, then three, then four and lastly five years. This month marks the five year anniversary of the start of #WATWB and, unfortunately, its end as well. As bloggers and their lives became busy and involved with work and family, interest waned and our once large group of participants has become just a handful of bloggers with an extra bit of time.
Along with Damyanti and Belinda, #WATWB has had help in the form of Ashlynn Waterstone, who kept the #WATWB private and community Facebook pages updated. We have had a number of hosts, including Sylvia McGrath, Eric Lahti, Dan Antion, Lizbeth Hart, and others that I apologize to for not listing. We were all part of a community of bloggers with good intentions to make people smile and soften hearts. As I said before, I am honored to have been a part of #WATWB and serve as host. Even in times when I don’t feel like writing or life is busy or complicated, I keep this community and their positivity in my heart.
I’m not sharing another positive story because this is my positive story. Keeping an eye on what’s good and right in the world has helped to keep me from focusing too much on what isn’t right. While I have been limiting exposure to the nightly news as the war in Ukraine is making me deeply sad, I find joy in the world that supports the Ukranians with direct donations, GoFundMe pages, organizations on the ground, or with small businesses that donate proceeds from blue and yellow candles or the sale of cheese. There IS good in the world, if only we could witness more of it in people, communities and countries.
While #WATWB is ending, it does not prevent me or other bloggers from continuing to focus on positivity and goodness – the hopeful and endearing stories from the human race. I encourage my readers to do the same, whether through blogging, a Facebook or Twitter post, or a simple photo of happiness on Instagram. The world needs more of this right now – a runway-bright light to break up the darkness and show us how to land in peace.
Remember, the end is not the end, only the beginning of something new.
“Welcome to the “We are the World Blogfest” (#WATWB ). The #WATWB was inspired by a simple conversation about how all the negativity on social media was weighing on us. Wanting to make a difference we decided to try to do our part to infuse social media with all the good stories that are out there. We hope to share the stories that show kindness, compassion, hope, overcoming challenges and in general, the impressive resilience of the human spirit. For every dark, negative story out there, there is a positive, heartwarming story that will add some light and lift the human spirit.” ~Belinda Witzenhausen~
If you would like to join in with posting for #WATWB or simply spread some joy on Facebook or Twitter, please click HERE for more information, guidelines and the hosts for this month’s event. You can go HERE to be part of the #WATWB Community Facebook page, where monthly posts congregate for your reading pleasure.