Change Someone's Life Today (Maybe Your Own)

Mitch JoelPosted by

We all want to do great work. We all want to change people’s lives… right?

When we first started building Mirum (back in 2000), I would often get featured in the local media. Not just because of the noise that we were making, but because I was very active in the local community. People, journalists, etc… would often ask why I was spending so much time doing community service, when I should be focused on building my business? I had never considered one over the other. My over-arching philosophy has always been the same…

You can’t have a strong business without a strong community to support it. 

I tend to look at my community service in buckets: what is serving my local community, what is serving my national community, what is serving the global community and what is serving the industry that I’m in? It’s not easy. I often let things drop, but I do my best to help out… to serve. I hope that you do as well. Over the years, I have done my best to not ask you – those that enjoy my content – for anything. I’ve always felt strange about asking for your support in any of my personal interests. It always felt… I don’t know… weird. I create, publish and curate content with two goals in mind: One, I love to create, think and share. Two, I want people to think differently about their business, and the way that they’re marketing it.

Today, I need your help. Today, I am asking you to help and to step up. 

Back in 2010, my best friend called to let me know that his five year old daughter, Leah, had cancer… leukemia. My world collapsed. A few weeks prior she was at my kid’s birthday party, laughing, playing… perfect. Now… leukemia? It was – without a question – one of the hardest moments in my life… trying to understand, and take in what my best friend was telling me about his daughter… who I would treat as my own daughter, in terms of love and care. I went into a tailspin.

You know what it feels like when your world gets turned upside down. I know that you do.

Leah’s courage throughout this nightmare is what pulled everyone through – family and friends. If there were ever a definition for the word “survivor” it is Leah. After a lengthy and hard battle, she is – thankfully – in remission, and back home where she belongs: with her family and friends. She is happily in remission.

She’s lucky, but many, many people are not this lucky.

It has been five years since Leah was diagnosed with Leukemia; a milestone that we are all happy to celebrate, because a strong percentage of children diagnosed with AML don’t get to it. Leah is lucky. Sadly, a boy who went to school with my child passed away after two relapses at the age of five. We think of him and his family often. There are many stories. Many people trying to raise money. Like I said, it’s never easy to ask. But I am asking. For the 5th year in a row, I will taking part in the Light The Night fundraising campaign. The walk will take place on Saturday, October 17th. Our team, Leah’s Helpers, has raised over $250,000.00 and been one of the most prolific teams in the history of the walk.

I am asking you to help me support this noble cause. 

I do my best to put out lots of content every week. This makes it close to four thousand entries over the years. This isn’t about me raising money. It’s about our kids and the randomness and cruelty that is leukemia and because none of us are safe. Leah and Liam got leukemia with no family history of the problem. Nothing. Now, Leah (who is in remission) will have to deal with this for the rest of her life. Other families aren’t even granted that luxury.

Please help.

I set a goal of $5000 to raise from friends and family. The truth is that I would love to crack the $10,000 mark. I do realize that times are tough, and many of us are watching our wallets just a little bit closer than we usually have, but please consider giving something. If over the years, any of my content has struck a chord with you, made you smile, made you see your business world in a different way, I hope that you will consider this ask as the “tip jar” for my thoughts.

If you can find it in your heart to give, please do so right here: Light The Night Walk.

How about a little giver’s gain?

As a “thank you,” here’s what I am offering:

  • Whoever donates the most money gets me for a one-hour get together. It can be via Skype, phone or in-person (meaning, if you’re in Montreal or if I happen to be travelling to wherever it is that you live). It will be a social meeting, but you can feel free to ask me anything. Lunch is on me. I’ll also include a signed copy of Six Pixels of Separation and CTRL ALT Delete.
  • Whoever comes in next will get a signed copy of Six Pixels of Separation and CTRL ALT Delete, plus a business book bundle that will include three great new books that just came out. Namely: Louder Than Words by Todd Henry, The Art of Work by Jeff Goins and Stand Out by Dorie Clark
  • I will also do a random draw and give away five sets of two “special” tickets to The Art Of… event of your choice. This is just the tickets, so you will have to handle travel, accommodations, etc…

Now, it’s your turn. Please help out. Please help me spread the good word. Thank you.

My friend – who is Leah’s father – wrote the following song and performed it. This should add some more context to my ask…