You may have heard or read about the Post War Orchestra (for example, in today's IoS) – using ploughshares beaten from swords (OK; actually musical instruments built from military hardware) to make music which urges ends to conflict.
This is not (unlike my “Warm” post of 18 January) a blunt request that you give money. Whereas each Euro, dollar or pound donation to UNICEF may directly save the life of a child, I don't kid myself that a performance by PWO at Glastonbury cathedral will, in itself, have the slightest effect when it comes to ending war – any more than my individual decision to be a vegan will, in itself, move us closer to ending world hunger.
The value of cultural and individual gestures like this is different: they play a part in asserting that there is another way. In time, such assertions can play their part in shifts of viewpoint which may, eventually, support real change. Think of the abolition of slavery, or the rise of mass literacy; each of them the eventual result which had to start with an assertion of the belief that things could change.
So … no. I am not asking that you give money to support PWO's project … I'm simply suggesting that, should you feel that you would like to, a good place to do it is on their KickStarter page (for details of which, thanks to reader Geoff Powell).
After thinking about it, becoming a backer seemed to me something I would like to do. It doesn't even cost me anything unless sufficient numbers of other people join me – if POW don't hit their declared pledge target by 20th April, my debit card will never be charged (and I can change my mind and my pledge at any point up to that date). So I went ahead and pledged my little bit of dosh (and it really can be little – the minimum pledge is £1 sterling: currently about €1.20 or US$1.50).
If you should happen to feel that you are inclined to do the same, the address is http://kck.st/16MW09o