Journey To a Fresh Start

UPDATE: Still collecting donations for living expenses in Portland
Left on May18th, so that hopefully I can attend a great job-training program I found out about, which will significantly upgrade my software development skills. 

Me and What's Happening

My name is George Burnett. My friends on Twitch know me as MORGsmash. I find myself in a very difficult position. I recently got laid off from my job as a cook at the local eatery and there are just not many other job opportunities nearby due to the rural nature of the area. 

I live in a small town  in Western Massachusetts.
I live 20+ miles from all of the other jobs available in the area and my car is highly undependable. This past winter has already been hard, after a fairly continuous run of bad luck that I have had for the last several years. 

In addition to this, I suffer from PTSD, anxiety and depression, making my daily interactions with people quite difficult at times, especially when I am stressed out over my survival.

In my current location, I am unable to get an internet connection. It's a widespread problem in the rural area where I live. The lack of internet has severely limited my earning potential for the last few  years. I used to be able to make money freelancing in software development, web design and graphic design, but that has been impossible to pursue in my current apartment. So I have come up with a crazy plan... 

The Crazy Plan - Part 1 - Move to Portland, OR
I ultimately want to earn a living creating art, my lifelong passion. I’ve been researching US cities, and I want to move to Portland, OR and start my life over! Looking at the work that's available in Portland, it looks like the land of opportunity to me. I have skills in Art, Creative Writing and Software Development, as well as Web/Graphic Design, and there are just tons of listings in all those areas for Portland. Tons, seriously!

There are a long list of things I need to do to make this happen, but here's what I have so far: 

1 - fix the car. I am planning on driving myself there, so I need to put $700 to $800 into the car for repairs/maintenance ($400 of repairs done so far thanks to donors!)

2 - have enough money to pay first/last/security on a new apartment, let's estimate that at $3900, being generous for safety 

3 - about 130 gallons of gas to get there, at around $3.10/gal - so $403, let's round that up to $450 

4 - a week to make the journey, so $30/day for food or $210  - and I am going to camp 4 nights, and spend 2 nights at people's houses - I'm estimating $50 per night for the camping, so about $200, let's say $250 in case I need an extra night. I bought a tent, sleeping bag and I need to get a few other things, about $200 total

Let's add it up: 
800 car 
3900 new apt 
450 fuel 
210 food 
450 lodging/camping
5810   - adjusting my goal to $6000

The Crazy Plan - Part 2 - New Life *updated*
Once on the ground in Portland, I will quickly find out if I can get into the training program at PDX Codeguild, but
I will also be looking for a job, and setting up an internet connection  to potentially generate some income by also pursuing freelance work in the fields I've mentioned. 

Once I have a stable living/income situation, I eventually want to try my hand at streaming on Twitch. I’m not thinking I’ll be a big streamer, but I’d like to supplement my income by having small early AM art stream as I continue work on the Graphic Novel project that I have been working on for the past year: my vision of the earth 30 or so years from now, a realistic science fiction look at the possible outcome of global climate change and how it will change our lives and our societies. This is a project I am very passionate about, and it is my dream to see it to fruition. But further down the road...

Other Ways to Help 
Spread the word! Share on Facebook, share on Twitter, etc, and thanks!

Also, if you cannot contribute funds and still wish to help, I will be looking for friends to stay with as I travel cross country and/or a hot meal. If you can offer either of those, they would be most welcome. More details to come once I am closer to a departure date. 

The Timing - Mid-May *updated*
MAY 16th is the target date. I gave my landlord my 30 days at the end of April. But I need to BE in Portland to finish the applications to the various programs which will pay for school, set to start in June!

I have alot of things to take care of to make this happen, but with your help I can get there. Once I am in Portland, I am positive I can find that life I'm looking for.

I guess that's it... I'll update this with more info as I go forward. I thank you for taking the time to let me share this with you, and if you choose to donate, my gratitude will be eternal. 

George Burnett 
aka MORGsmash


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George Burnett 
Cummington, MA
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