“Let us not look for you only in memory. You would want us to find you in presence, beside us when beauty brightens, when kindness glows and music echoes eternal tones.”– John O’Donohue
Yes, my friends, it’s here. The auspicious date for announcing the 2020 recipients of Taz Grout’s 222 Foundation. Every year, to honor my radiant, brilliant daughter, Tasman McKay Grout, the 222 Foundation gives a grant to an imaginative project with the chutzpah to radically change the consciousness of the planet.
I’m a sharp P on the Myers-Briggs scale which indicates I tend toward being flexible, spontaneous and open-minded. Good qualities, right?
Except when you need to narrow down options, to make decisions. So receiving 100 applications for this year’s grant was well, way outside my comfort zone. I wanted to fund them all.
Thanks to some assistance from my “board” (that is to say a coffee consultation with my friend, Never-Say-No-to-Fun Rhonda), I finally picked these three:
1. A Taz Grout forest of 2222 trees in southern India. The tree planting idea started when someone nominated climate activist Greta Thunberg. I love that she’s young, brutally honest and 100 percent committed.
Plus what could be more imperative right now than changing our climate story? Particularly, the story that humankind is separate from the natural world, that material possessions are more important than our planet’s air, water, soil and trees. This home of ours is alive, sentient and we must do everything we can to exit the feedback loops that tell us we are lord and master.
Greta made this wonderful video detailing a natural climate solution. This magical tool sucks carbon out of the air, costs very little and has the ability to repair our natural environment.
The Taz Grout 222 Foundation will plant 2222 trees this year through Project GreenHands, a grassroots ecological initiative established by the Isha Foundation. I chose GreenHands because it was started by the illustrious Sadhguru (check him out if you haven’t already) and because Taz’s forest will be in India near some of her ashes and last year’s 222 project.
2. A Taz Grout school library in the Annapurna region of Nepal. Taz was an avid reader, maybe because I started reading to her when she was still in the womb. She kept lists of all the books she read each year. In college, she worked at the library. So supporting literacy for girls in rural and impoverished Nepal is the perfect fit for the 222 Foundation.
I fell in love with Hands in Nepal from the moment I opened the email from director, Jan Sprague. HANDS (it stands for Humanitarian Acts in Nepal Developing Schools) does amazing, heartfelt work. Everyone in the organization is a volunteer.
Jan, like me, lost a child and doesn’t belief in death. She knows our children will always be with us, here and now. It was her other son, Danny, who actually started this wonderful nonprofit that builds schools and libraries. My plans are to go to Nepal later this year for the installation of the plaque honoring Taz. I look forward to extending Taz’s family into the rural Himalayas. This video is the perfect primer of this outstanding organization.
3. Last project honors Taz’s commitment to relentless creativity. If you read my books, you know Taz and I had a thing about anonymously gifting small bills and leaving encouraging notes about the wildly abundant universe. Kimmy Rhoades, a kindergarten teacher in Snohomish, Washington, applied for the 222 grant with her visionary Random Acts of Money project.
This generous soul loves giving money away to strangers, proving that old school financial assumptions, traditions and habits block the more accurate truth that freedom is available for everyone. She drops bills of all denominations–on hiking trails, biking paths, in parking lots and stores. Often in the form of origami fish or paper airplanes, her money bombs blast, as she says, the ridiculous notion of scarcity right out of the water.
With the help of a 222 grant, her kindergartners’ natural creativity and the love notes she plans to attach, her secret mission will seed 222 messages of hope for all.
This video isn’t Kimmy’s project, but you get the idea:
Pam Grout is the author of 20 books including E-Squared, E-Cubed, Thank & Grow Rich and her latest book, The Course in Miracles Experiment: A Starter Kit for Rewiring Your Mind (And Therefore Your World).