It’s an increasingly incomprehensible world that we seem to be living in. Problems keep stacking up all around us; institutions we previously took for granted are being rocked; and against the apparently insurmountable tide of bad news and bad vibes, we can feel powerless to effect change. We become spectators on our own planet: sometimes aghast, often passive, always small.
However, as natural as this reaction is, it is not inevitable. We are not confined to stasis and stagnation in the face of the issues that scare us. We have a choice to be hopeful – to take ownership of the decisions we make, however small, and doggedly keep moving. As essayist Rebecca Solnit commented in a recent article for The Guardian UK, “Optimists think it will all be fine without our involvement; pessimists adopt the opposite position; both excuse themselves from acting. Hope is the belief that what we do matters”.
This emphasis on doing, rather than denying, is what inspired our mantra for PURE 2016: Small Promises Change Worlds. The PURE community is made up of individuals who have all committed their lives to changing the world and our perspectives of it through the transformative power of travel. For PURE 2016, we want our PUREists to recognise and use that power to commit to one of several small promises we’ve created to alleviate the strain we are putting on our planet (and those at PURE in Marrakech can make their promise in person and collect a bracelet to remind them of their commitment at the Promise Tree).
When taken individually, these promises are indeed small – but their potential lies in the possibility for the PURE community to take them and use them as a springboard for greater change. Five hundred promises alone can make a difference, but by taking their spirit back to your companies, communities and customers and encouraging them to make similar small promises of their own, we really can Change Worlds.