PeepCon has been a very pleasant surprise so far. In just three days, the 100 original slots were reserved and we’ve since added more seats to accommodate more people who want to join the fun. The People’s Conference is shaping up to be a nice event, but just this weekend, I saw an opportunity to make it even more special.
JP Prieto, COO of Xight Interactive, informed me that SEO expert and industry friend Gary Andrew Lacanilao was recently diagnosed with stage 3 lung cancer. Gary is a young man and a non-smoker, so this came as a shock to me. I spoke with him briefly last night and he shared that the disease has metastasized to his bones and he is under severe pain. He also confided that his work has been affected by his condition, which makes the situation a little more complex.
JP and I agreed that if PeepCon is truly the People’s Conference, we should use it to channel the power of the people to lend a hand to other people who deserve it. Gary is one of our own in this industry, he is one of the best SEO practitioners in this country bar none and atop it all, he’s a good man. I’m hoping that we can take it upon ourselves to assist him in our own small way.
How I think We Can Raise Funds
I believe that PeepCon is in a nice position to raise substantial funds for Gary’s benefit. Only the first item in the list is final, so feel free to pitch suggestions on the other parts:
GDI to Donate PeepCon’s Extra Income
When we said PeepCon was non-profit, we meant it. The registration fees will cover the cost of the venue and the food. Speakers were originally not obliged to pay because part of the math was the awareness that we’d have to give away complementary seats to VIPs. However, if the speakers and the VIPs paid registration fees like everyone else, PeepCon will have a little profit to work with. That profit is what we intend to donate to Gary’s cause.
So I will say this: speakers and VIPs are still NOT required to pay registration fees, but they are ENCOURAGED to do so . Bayanihan lang po. No obligations, but we would appreciate the spirit of charity wherever we can find it. 🙂
Invite More People. Share the Gift of PeepCon
If you’re attending PeepCon, feel free to invite more friends and colleagues. I’ll open registration to up to 200 participants. The more people we can pull in, the more extra funds we can generate and donate to the cause.
On-Site, Voluntary Donation
If you feel like helping even if you’re not a speaker, we can certainly accommodate that. Our runners will be passing around envelopes during the event so you can make a donation right at PeepCon. Full transparency will be exercised from the accounting of the funds to its delivery to our beneficiary.
The Great Speaker Auction
Imagine that the likes of Jason Acidre, Sheila Dela Pena, Jec Gonzales or Valerie Deveza are in your team to provide expert insights on your projects. Now imagine that while you have them as your consultants, you’re helping raise funds for Gary. Too good to be true? If I get the kind of support I need, we can make it a reality.
I’m appealing to my fellow speakers to volunteer for a consultancy auction that will raise more funds for Gary. If you can give us the gift of your consultancy time (2 hours or so), we would love to sell it to the highest bidder. The proceeds will go directly to Gary’s benefit fund. It’s still a rough idea and I would love to hear your thoughts on it.
I’ll Wear Your Shirt for a Cause
If anyone wants to advertise on me (and I’ll be seen quite a lot in PeepCon), I’m volunteering to wear your company’s shirt all day for no less than Php 1,000. I can only wear one shirt, so the spot goes to the highest bidder. I’m serious about this. 🙂 The money goes to Gary’s treatment.
At the end of the day, I’d like to think that we’re more than just marketers: we’re a tight community that can be mobilized for good causes. Help PeepCon give the gift of better health to our brother in the industry. Your support will be much appreciated.
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