September’s Awesome Ottawa award goes to Sierra Wooldridge to support “Take This Note,” a project to distribute hand-crafted positive notes for people to find — then share online.
“I'm a young, life-loving woman with a mouth full of laughter and a brain full of spunk,” Sierra explains. “But I haven't always been a happy-go-lucky preacher of love. I went through a rough patch and struggled with anxiety, panic, and chronic stress. Since then, I've learned that the most important thing in life is to be happy and spread whatever happiness you feel with others.”
“When I was suffering from chronic stress and anxiety, at one point I was homeless. On a bitter and grey day I headed to the women's crisis centre and was told they had no room for me in any shelter, and that I'd have to come back in a few hours to see if they had found a place for me to stay. So, with nothing but a duffle bag containing my empty wallet and a few shirts, I went for a brief walk down the street and sat on a bench. I felt extremely depressed and very alone.”
“Here I am, nearly a year later, and looking back on that point in my life I can't believe I was ever such a sad and bitter person. I think if the me now had sat next to me then and told her everything would be alright my mind frame and feelings would have been very different that day.”
“Sometimes all we need is someone to tell us everything will be ok. With ‘Take This Note,’ I plan to hand-craft thousands of notes with positive, uplifting messages inside each one, and plant them all over the city for random people to find. I adore the idea of serendipity and I believe with the right energy sent out into the universe these notes will be picked up by people needing a quick reassurance that they'll be ok.”
“I’m planning on building a website,” Sierra explains, “where note finders will be able to visit and submit a photo of them and their note so I can see that they've found it, and then post it on the website so they can see I've received their photo, and also look at some pictures of other note finders and their notes.”
The award from Awesome Ottawa will go toward the tools and supplies Sierra will need to create the notes. She also hopes to video document the process of making and planting them so people can follow her journey as the notes are found.
Funded by Ottawa, ON (September 2014)