Today marks the beginning of the rest of my life – and each morning that I wake up, the same is heralded to me by my conscience. ‘Live each day as if it were your last’ -is my philosophy.

The world is in the state its in now and we continue to watch, to take photos, write stories and share it in doses of idle gossip. We are where we are because you are who you are and I am who I am, two people with power, influence and potential beyond description yet we have failed to take the world to where we want it to be.

On a realist’s scale, we have failed, not because we couldn’t but because we didn’t because we wouldn’t and told those around us that they shouldn’t. We only had desire without will or action, yes we failed, we failed to see ourselves carrying that gun to displace thousands; destroying vegetation, killing animals and turning that child away from school. Its been us all along, you and me, the world.

We failed to realize that peace begins with a vote, the green revolution starts with the tree you plant in your backyard, poverty ends with that child you help send to school and AIDS ends with you getting tested for HIV. It begins and ends with you: life, hope, change – you…

The truth is that its not enough to dream or form mental images of the world we want to see, neither is it enough to paint portraits of the state of the world and trust that those who see it will experience a change of heart. The images will fade to the reality the eyes see and the portrait will only get darker and darker with time.

Great men and women of old told me that ‘the actions of men are the best interpreters of their thoughts’ and that what the mind attends to, it considers, when the mind attends it continually, it believes. And what the mind believes, it eventually does’. They also told me that ‘action may not always bring happiness; but there is no happiness without action.’

If we don’t stand and act to bring positive change to this world then who will?, if we don’t do it now then when will we? I will not be found waiting and wishing for the tide of change to come, I’ll throw my pebble of action into the ocean and hope that one day, someone somewhere will feel the ripple.

I urge you to cast your pebble in with mine then maybe, just maybe, we’ll create a tide of change and sweep away the AIDS, malaria, poverty, global warming and tears of war. I will attend to this vision continually, I will believe it, I will act, remember my friend – it begins and ends with you!

Taking a step at a time to create the ultimate developmental journey.