Scatter my ashes here...

Scatter my ashes here...
scatter my ashes in the desert...

Wednesday, January 27, 2010


Despite the Horatio Alger myth that a few people still cling to, in the world we live in, you can't pull yourself up by your bootstraps.

No one does it all alone, everyone needs help to get somewhere. No one ever achieved anything in this world without having some basic support to lean on, whether it's a family source of money, connections to other people, a solid secure upbringing, combined with good health and a little luck.

For anyone who struggles, whether it's from being impoverished, poor education, lack of parenting, addiction, abuse, mental health conditions, or whatever it is, it's not possible in this world to achieve a secure, stable, comfortable quality of life all on your own. Yes it does take a certain amount of self-discipline and motivation, but having the power and resources at your disposal to really succeed at changing your circumstances requires help from other people. No one exists in a vacuum.

The AIR Foundation seeks to help individuals rise out of homelessness and addiction through

Activity Inspired Rehabilitation

This Denver-based organization helps people who are in recovery programs train for marathons, to help them work toward gaining the building blocks needed to succeed in the world. Some of the AIR Foundation's goals include assisting people in recovery with goal-setting, self-confidence, self-discipline, teamwork, giving support and encouragement, providing connections with the community, and helping them navigate a path to success to rebuild their lives and thrive.

Last Saturday, members of the Fort Collins Running Club and other local runners joined members of The AIR Foundation and it's founder, ultrarunner Nick Sterner, for a run at Horsetooth Reservoir on a cold, windy day. About 25 people came out for the run.

photo credit: AIR Foundation and Fort Collins Running Club by Nick Sterner
At the end of 2008, this organization lost it's funding. The smiles, determination, and positive attitudes of the participants who joined us showed what a great program this is, giving people hope and support that they use for success. One of the participants proudly announced that he is about to graduate from the program, and he's been clean and sober for 16 months as a result of being involved with the AIR Foundation. I could see and feel his enthusiasm in his encouragement of the other runners as he powered up the steep hills above the reservoir.

If you're interested in supporting the efforts of The AIR Foundation, go to their website.

This organization is helping people locally, and the evidence is in the smiles of the participants who are so proud of their accomplishments. Anyone who struggles deserves a chance. For anyone who struggles with addiction, it often takes much more than one chance, and this program is giving a chance to real people, real human beings, who might otherwise still be out on the streets and living with no hope.

It's worth supporting with whatever you can give.

Because every human being deserves to be this comfortable.