I knew about Ken Starks long before he began writing for us about a year ago. In fact, I knew about him long before FOSS Force even existed. I knew about him from reading his Blog of Helios. I also knew about the important work he does, through his nonprofit Reglue project, getting Linux computers into the hands of school aged children in the Austin area, children who’s parents can’t afford computers because they’re having enough trouble keeping beans on the table and warm coats on their kid’s backs.
During the last year, since Ken’s been part of our team here, I’ve come to know Ken personally, and he’s everything he seems to be. He’s gruff, a little rough around the edges (with plenty of edges) and has a gigantic heart. I wouldn’t change a thing about him. Those edges and his big heart define who he is and without them Ken wouldn’t be Ken — and the world would be poorer for it.
It’s no secret that Ken is currently going through something of a medical crisis. He’s written about it here and today he talked about it on his blog. He’s going in for some serious surgery in January and we’re keeping our fingers crossed for him — which is about all we can do. The rest is out of our hands. It’ll be okay. The doctors have assured him that this surgery “will cure what ails him.”
This news comes just as Reglue is in the middle of a campaign on Indiegogo to raise the funds needed to keep the organization going for the next year. Unfortunately, the effort isn’t going so well, forcing him to extend the end date of the campaign in hopes of raising the money he needs.
Here’s the situation: As of today, the campaign has raised $3,502, 61 percent short of its $9,000 goal. The effort has been stuck at around this level for a while now. With the extension, there are now 27 days left in the campaign. Reglue has already started cutting back on services in anticipation of not reaching the goal.
This is untenable in my estimation.
We need to help Ken make this campaign a success. The work he does in southeast Texas is highly important.
All you need do is read some of his articles on our site about kids who are now in college, working for undergraduate and graduate degrees in the sciences, after getting a boost from Reglue. As Ken likes to point out, these are people who will make the world a better place, not only because their degrees will enable them to get out of poverty and give them knowledge to help mankind overcome some of the challenges we face, but because through their involvement in Reglue, they’ve learned something about giving back and doing for others.
We also need to make this campaign a success for Ken. He’s got a lot on his plate, and it would be nice to know that when he’s rolled in for his surgery in January, that this will be one less thing for him to worry about.
Please give what you can, even if it’s only twenty dollars. Even if it’s only ten dollars. Your donation is tax deductable, if you care about such things, and it’ll help some very precious children who will go on to help the world.