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The Dire Situation:
Yesterday, I sauntered into a diary asking Kossacks to help one of our own,Charley James, known here lately as the author of the Suddenly Homeless series.

Surviving a third round of cancer, having worked since he was 16 to supposedly secure a middle-class life, he had his life's savings stolen by fraudulent financial advisor who took the money and, literally, ran. There doesn't look to be any justice for Charley on this front. He lost his money & his home while he was unemployed and dealing with cancer. Just to top things off, he was hit by a car. As he dealt with the medical complication of a brain injury, he was forced by our heartless system to negotiate the settling of taxes due which his fraudulent financial advisor never paid. That's right, someone stole all of his money, but he was still held responsible for the taxes that person contracted to manage.

Life can be harsh. I know. My story is different, but not so different. I know that shock of the 180 degree turn your life can take with the onset of a crisis or two in a social environment of "Darwinist Capitalism". But, I also know....

The Magical Experience
Yes, I know the very magical experience of having not just your spirit raised, but your life concretely affected in a positive way by the generosity of the DailyKos community. Without it, I might not be alive today.

Remember the days before DailyKos had groups? Back in 2009, some of us were using a satellite Ning site to network with each other personally. We used the site to help each other find work, get emotional support, etc. Some of us formed a group called Chronic Tonic wherein we shared our experiences of living with chronic illness. It was really just a "you can vent here, we understand" kind of a group.

Only, Ellinorianne, read a comment I made about my inability to get my health insurance company to cover some critical medical tests. I had become almost completely disabled and was getting worse. I was losing weight, the ability to walk, had become so sensitive to light and sound that I could not leave my darkened room. My doc knew what I needed, but we couldn't get the insurance company to cover the test required to qualify for the treatment. And there was no way I could afford it. Next thing I know, she's posted a diary over here at the Great Orange Satan asking people to help me out.

Within days, over $4,000 dollars was raised. I was able to get my tests. They led to a diagnosis and eventually treatment. I'm not cured, but I'm far more functional now. I'm almost certain I wouldn't be alive today. The hypercusis alone would likely have driven me to suicide. I am so thankful to have the effects of the hyperacusis reduced to something a bit more manageable than it had been.

The Power of Community
I had been fairly new to DailyKos at the time. I had never seen a fundraising effort for a fellow Kossack. I was completely overwhelmed with gratefulness, humility and renewed hope. I received many donations between $5 and $10. That may seem like small potatoes. But, they kept coming in. So many of them that it was only a couple of days before they totalled nearly $4,000. Such is the power of community. Many hands make light work. Many small donations lighten a huge burden from someone's life. To this day, I still get goosebumps and cry when I recall that experience. I had never met a single soul from DailyKos in person. A community of virtual strangers saved my life. It gives one a glimmer of hope for mankind.

That's what your donation can mean. So, whenever I see one of the fundraising diaries, I contribute. Its so nice to a part of that effort. I can't repay a $4000 debt, but I can give $5 or $10 now and again and contribute back to this community.

Send Charley Some Magic
Please, help Charley out. I did. I'm totally excited that this person I've never met might be lifted out of homelessness with the aide of my little contribution. There are two ways to contribute:

  • Paypal: send money to
  • snail mail: G. Weigel, Attn: Charley James, 2438 Sanford Drive, Columbus OH 43535
  • The Goal:
    When Soshanna posted the diary yesterday, she had set a goal of $750. She broke it down as such:

    $650.00 is for a room for a month.
    $100.00 for electricity deposit, perishable food, and his cell phone bill for one month.  

    Astute visitors noted that she and Charley had not considered the possible need for a rental deposit. The goal was then increased to $1500 to help with a deposit and a little breathing room.

    As of 05:12:49 PM EDT, our awesome community had raised $1,120! Woot! That leaves $380 to go. Piece of cake, right? Totally!

    So, today we're asking Kossacks to find their way to contributing another $380. (Of course, Charley can use all the help he can get, so don't feel like you have stop there!)

    Share Your Magical Stories
    Have you been the recipient of Kossack generosity? Have you contribute to other fundraising campaigns for Kossacks? In the comments, tell us all what it has felt like to give and/or receive. The stories can be so inspirational and they remind us all that compassion is alive and well in humanity today. The more we share those stories, the more new ones we generate.

    Have at it, my friends. We'll keep you posted about the campaign progress as the day unfolds. Thank you all for being so generous of heart and soul and resources.

    Humbly, Una


    If you want to read more about Charley's situation, please visit his diaries:

    You can also read more about him at

12:15 PM PT: bubbanomics has offered to contribute half if someone will match!

12:18 PM PT: and Lujane has matched! See? Magic!

12:21 PM PT: please know that Charley can use anything you feel so moved to contribute. We didn't include here considerations for reuniting him with his dog, Prince, for instance. Will there be an extra deposit for that? Does he need dog food money? If you'd like to support that, please don't let the fact that we've reached this particular goal stop you. Let the magic flow.

Originally posted to Community Fundraisers on Sun Jun 24, 2012 at 11:42 AM PDT.

Also republished by DK Grants.

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