Moto, moto, gotta a lot of motivation. Dedi, dedi, gotta a lot of dedication. Motivated. Dedicated. To the Corps. Your Corps. My Corps. Marine Corps!”
I think we sang that cadence in nearly every run, hike or walk while I was in the Marine Corps. The cadence goes on to talk about our love for being a United States Marine. We could be 25 miles into a hike across the Mojave Desert in the scorching sun, carrying our increasingly heavy machine guns, on our last canteen of water, and each of us would still muster up the energy to scream out that cadence. I vividly remember those moments; the moments when I felt the passion for being a Marine pour out of me. I would have laid my life on the line for my fellow brothers and they would have done the same for me, without question.
Passion and dedication are powerful things. I’d argue that those two things can change the world. Ben Minnis tapped into these characteristics recently, and it won him 100 free t shirts. (and much more) Last week Envision Tees ran a promotion for all non profits in our community. It was simple, but par for the course for Tom Rauen, it was also genius. He asked non profits to tag themselves on Envision Tee’s Facebook page and the winner would be determined by how many likes their respective tags received. 43 organizations participated and 791 votes were casted for this contest. Breaking the Silence, the organization that Ben started at Loras College won with an astonishing 270 votes!
Ben stated this organization with the purpose of supporting individuals that struggle with mental illness. I started noticing his work this past year on Facebook with his empowering “what do you live for” campaign.
The campaign took off like wildfire. People were talking about the depression and anxiety they felt with people they didn’t even know. Breaking the Silence is effectively erasing the stigma that has existed with mental illness for decades. The dedication and passion Ben has for his organization is inspiring. He had me engaged in our first meeting together. I was ready to get involved and support his efforts.
When Tom announced his contest to all local non profits, Ben didn’t send a newsletter out to his volunteers, donors or constituents. Nor did he encourage all of his employees to vote for his organization. He simply asked his closest friends to “like” what he cared most about. And did they ever. But they didn’t do it because they are friends with Ben. No, I’d argue they voted in groves for Ben and Breaking the Silence because they know he lives and breathes his mission. If given the opportunity, he would meet with one person or a 100 people to share his vision, every hour of every day. Ben would spend every waking hour empowering individuals with mental illness and their allies.
We all want to be inspired and feel like we are part of something that is making a difference. Ben did that for 270 people on Facebook and undoubtedly thousands more.