If you are new to this blog please refer to my post, May our worlds collide for any background information you may need to make sense of the events that will be expressed in the following post.
I had a friend named Will Boyd, he was really sick, his heart was failing and he was in medical debt. In October I heard about all of this and I felt compelled to make a difference in a small way, just on my own. I decided I could help by donating 20% of the proceeds from my art sales through my Etsy shop to his health care fund. I wanted to give small amounts of $5.00 and $8.00 dollars over the course of the month; that was my simple plan.
I also happen to have an amazing group of friends. Friends in my local community and from MySpace and Facebook. Friends from around the country and around the globe.These friends were very moved by my blog post regarding Will. They were also moved by my Facebook and MySpace bulletins and memos asking for help on his behalf. They rose to the challenge and put skepticism and doubt aside and gladly offered their support and help. They donated column inches in their blogs to promote my Etsy shop and my donation goals for Will's cause.They donated their own paintings, giving either all or part of the proceeds to his health care fund. My friends told their friends, through additional blogs and bulletins. My friends also held Will in their thoughts and prayers with love and concern. These friends bought my works from my Etsy shop during the month of October in order to help Will. Just through this, I/we raised $245 in October which I then donated to help offset Will's medical debts.
I think we felt connected, helpful, and empowered. We were happy to be a part of a grass roots movement to take care of one of our own. We were working under the concepts of idealism, hope, and trust.
Well, last night I received an email that shook me to my core. An email that for a moment made me doubt my judgement and doubt my good nature. Unfortunately, my friend Will Boyd exaggerated his health issues. His heart was not about to fail. He now claims to have Bi-polar disorder and things just spiraled out of control. You can read his apology here at the website. http://loveisone.org/
So, our worlds collided and got bigger and bigger, and unfortunately our trust was broken and our hearts were abused and I am sorry I dragged you all into this mess. However, I did get a refund of the $245 dollars that I donated to Will's health care fund, as well as a personal apology email from Will. I am in the process of returning any money that was given to me from other artists from their sales to benefit Will's cause. The remaining money that I had donated as a result of my Etsy sales for the month of October will now be donated to the Humane Society of the United States. So that we can all still feel good about our actions in October. If you bought a painting from me through my Etsy shop in October I thank you sincerely, your heart is big and I appreciate your willingness to give to a stranger and I hope you are enjoying my art. Know that your 20% has now been given to the Humane Society "to stop animal cruelty and suffering wherever it occurs" and I hope you feel good about your donation.
We have big hearts, and I don't regret that. I hope you don't either.
I hope you know how proud I am to be a part of such a wonderful community of friends and artists. Your caring and generosity inspired me in October and continues to do so. I won't let anyone take that away from me. I hope you won't either.
Thank you for your understanding.
For those who don't know, my Etsy store has been fully restocked with new small works just in time for the holidays and I am offering free shipping through the 7th of December. Please visit my shop, Art Maven. www.artmaven.etsy.com
pictured above : The Wheat Fields
6x9" Mixed media on paper $25.00