Thursday, October 21, 2010

Daks: improve your well-being

Recently I stumbled across a super TED speech by Happiness Researcher, Nic Marks. Not only is he a great speaker, witty and poignant, but the concept is foundational to the future of our planet. Mr. Marks has created the Happy Planet Index, which essentially measures national well-being against the use of resources.

I guess it isn't surprising that the worlds most developed nations do not rank highly on the list. In fact, Costa Rica is the most highly ranked country, followed by the Dominican Republic and Jamaica. The index is a compilation of three measures: life expectancy, life satisfaction and ecological footprint. Canada is ranked 89 out of 143 countries, the U.S. is 114th.

What might this have to do with kindness and the dakbands you ask? Well...the New Economic Foundation (nef), of which Nic Marks is the founder, was commissioned by the U.K. government (in 2008) to develop a set of evidence-based actions that improve well-being. They reviewed the inter-disciplinary work of 400 researchers and came up with five evidence-based actions. I am encouraged. The first of the five is:(image is from the nef website)

It's time to make the dakbands a national phenomenon, we definitely need to improve our ranking. Apparently, the U.K and the U.S. need them as well :)

With that in mind, I have to make another plea for your votes. Please take a moment to vote for us (scroll down to find the Deliberate Acts of Kindness project), for the grant from Freerange Studios and ask everyone you know to vote as well - we need your help to improve the well-being of people around the world.

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