Firstly, I would like to say a HUGE thank-you to you all for your support in the last months. You’ve all been incredible, and it’s been phenomenal to share this excitement with all of you!
Riding for Happiness started as a far-fetched idea; it’s now growing into something quite magnificent, though, we have a lot of growing still to do. For me, this project is the implementation of a dream that I believe many of us have stored in a drawer or somewhere else: the ultimate pursuit of understanding and freedom, combined with the conquest of the unknown.
As you probably already know if you’ve looked at my website (www.ridingforhappiness.com
), through this motorbike adventure from Rome to Bhutan, my aim is to conduct a cross-cultural study on happiness through the 16 countries I will cross, interviewing the people I will meet along the road. My plan, once back, is to make a documentary with all the content captured throughout my journey.
Giving back to society is also a fundamental component of the mission. The adventure, will, in fact, also serve as a crowdfunding campaign to raise money for “Operation Smile”.
I will be honest, there are so many charities that do incredible things, but I believe that it’s the simplest ones that really make a difference in the daily lives of less fortunate people. Too often, for example, we overlook and ignore the power of a smile.
What is a smile but a few facial muscles pushing the edges of the lips upwards? Yet this simple act, even if forced, transforms the entire face and changes the way a person is viewed. It is universal; overcoming religion, ethnicity, class, gender and language. (Please do watch the below video until the end to understand the true meaning of what I'm saying).
Operation Smile is an international medical charity that has provided hundreds of thousands of free surgeries for children in developing countries who are born with a cleft lip, cleft palate or other facial conditions.
ONLY 6.3% of an estimated 312.9 million surgical procedures performed each year go to the poorest third of the global population. It is estimated that, worldwide, a child is born every 3 minutes with a cleft —about one in 500-750 births.
This is why I have a goal of raising not only enough funds to cover the cost of this project but also to contribute funds to Operation Smile. Why Operation Smile? Simple! Because a smile is the universal expression of Happiness. Here’s the plan:
I’m trying to raise 20.000 Euros to cover the basic cost of this seven-month motorbike ride from Rome to Bhutan, including visas, fuel, and living expenses. Once I’ve raised enough money to cover such cost, I want to raise an additional 20.000 Euros for Operation Smile (enough to change the lives of 100 children born with a cleft lip). All contributions in excess of 20k will go to Operation Smile. Keep in mind that this project is going to continue also after the end of my adventure with the documentary, a photographic exhibition and other initiatives I'm already planning.
Together WE can make a difference! #OneRoadOneWorldwww.ridingforhappiness.com