In the last week since becoming a parent, I have been reveling in the love and thoughtful comments on the blog, facebook and instagram regarding Lilo. The remaining time has been spent putting out fires while preparing for Team LivingVerticals fund raiser. We are attempting to take on an expedition film project to promote empowerment and visibility of diabetes–as a team.

We are fund raising for the budget to make a 5 film series of our expedition to become the first all diabetic climbing team to establish a new technical climbing route this summer. We are contributing any funds raised over budget to Insulin For Life USA, to promote their life saving work–and they have a matching guarantee from the Helmsley Charitable Trust, so we can potentially have a huge impact, both figurative and literal.Project365 sort of came out of left field–and it worked. This is what seems like the next step to me–a similar message, only spread across a team of us who each represent different communities across North America and Europe.

So what’s different about this? Well for starters, I’m not going into this blind. I know that in order to make a film (or 5) it costs money because there are some things I can’t do and can’t ask someone else to do for free. I also know that all of us on the team have been climbing and will keep climbing regardless of the film budget. I also know that if I am going to go and leave my baby for a considerable chunk of time to take on a film/climbing project, I need to know it’s 100% viable (read: funded). So this campaign is all or nothing. If we meet or exceed our goal, game on. If we fall short, then no money changes hands and we figure something else out.

I’ve said before that this is “your” project–and I think it’s especially true here. I believe that a team of diabetic climbers going into the backcountry unsupported, unsponsored, taking time away from their day jobs to explore wilderness first ascents…which is something that has not happened in recorded climbing history…I believe that’s a pretty powerful story.

Do you want to make sure it gets told? Like I’ve said to the team, we don’t have to get one person to give us $25,000 to make these films. We have to get 1000 people to give us $25 apiece–and that’s doable. In fact, in 30 days I think we can exceed that amount by a good piece and make a big contribution to IFL-USA at the same time. Each one of you who reads this–you have people. Share what we are doing. Ask your friends to share it. We are trying to make diabetes visible–through an empowering message. Let’s do it.