David Wilcox reported this week about an inspiring initiative founded by Simon Berry:
Twenty years ago Simon Berry was a development worker in North Zambia, conscious that while he could buy a bottle of Coke anywhere, children were dying through inadequate distribution of simple medical treatments. In many cases they simply needed rehydration salts. Wouldn't it be possible to reach an agreement by which Coca Cola used a small part of its superior distribution capacity to get the medicine to children?
Simon explains: "The idea came to me - but I had no mechanism for sharing it with people. At least, I did have mechanisms, but they were one to one mechanisms, and the thing never got any traction. But now, with the whole Web 2.0 thing, one person can have an idea, and gather other people around that idea, very, very easily."
Simon has done just that. Starting with a blog post, and then a Facebook group, Simon has been interviewed on BBC radio, and attracted the support of New Seekers' Eve Graham. The New Seekers original song 'I'd Like To Teach The World To Sing' was adopted by Coke. Coca Cola were at first unresponsive, however have now said they would be happy to talk to Simon.
David Wilcox interviewed Simon Berry this week at 2gether08, a two-day festival exploring how social media and digital technologies can tackle social problems. Simon continues to document the projects developments on his blog and urges us to join the Facebook Group and come up with other ways to gather support.