AMA: Athene & Reese, returned from Ebola-hit Liberia and organizers of popular developing world AMA's

We made a documentary about the Ebola outbreak in Liberia and wanted to share it with Reddit because of the overwelming response to the AMA we organized with an Ebola survivor. We first wanted to post it in /r/videos but since we know many of you aren't subscribed to /r/videos, we thought it would be better and more personal to do an AMA so we would reach the same redditors that have been so supportive towards the children we made AMA's with.

Feel free to ask us absolutely anything about our experiences or additional questions about the other AMA's. Here are our four previous AMA's: IamA 14yr old Ebola survivor in remote Liberia -

10yr old street child working to help support my family in rural & remote Ethiopia, AMA -

IamA child in a rural region of a developing country, answering questions via text messaging -

Third World Child AMA with translator via satellite -

For those interested in the documentary, which also shows Mohamed's AMA, 'The End of Ebola':

(proof: )

Comments: 215 • Responses: 54  • Date: 

Floygga9 karma

Was there anything you wanted to show in the film, that didn't make it to the final cut?

reese01510 karma

It was interesting to hear from several people within Save the Children that the huge shift in behavior among Liberians not only drastically impacted the spread of Ebola and led to an incredible decline in the amount of Ebola cases, but also in a significant decline of many other diseases spreading. That was a fascinating consequence of all the behavioral changes but the bits I had filmed about it didn't quite fit anywhere in the documentary. - Reese

Dfanati8 karma

When you actually landed and started walking around the Ebola hit areas, how scared did you become? For example when you were shown an area where the medical staff sat in front of a patient that could potentially have Ebola, taking a couple steps into the room could put you under severe risk of contracting the disease.

reese01511 karma

I was a lot more scared before actually arriving there. Once you're on the ground, you realize just how much absolutely everyone is taking extreme measures and precautions to fight and contain the disease. - Athene

Cadenca7 karma

Would you consider applying for the Mars One mission? Gaimz from the red planet best stream milky way

reese0153 karma

I don't like streaming with a delay. But once they dig up the the Prothean remains on Mars and build quantum communicators, we'll do best stream milky way. - Athene & Reese

Joddlern7 karma

Did people there actually refused to touch other people there of fear of catching the disease?

reese0159 karma

Yes, it has actually become something of a social etiquette to avoid all touching. The only exception is children, mothers carry their babies and children themselves are less aware of it. An example of how seriously they take it: there are chlorine basins for hand-washing in front of just about every doorstep. And if you forget to wash your hands before entering, you'll get quite angry responses :). - Athene

Awkrin7 karma

How do you feel when you save children and people still hate you?

reese01525 karma

Saving children's lives and how people perceive me are two completely separate things to me. I don't do one for the other or vice versa. I just try to do what feels right and use my persona to do so as it as proven to be very effective. And I'd gladly trade in my image if it saves lives, as people will forget me but the lives that have been saved will carry on. - Athene

Sir_Who6 karma

First of all I just want to say thanks for all you've done for everyone. Your charity work is astounding and Gaming for Good is awesome!

My questions are:

Have you ever seriously considered joining an esports team? Also are you planning on conquering any other games? (dota/starcraft/heroes of the storm/guild wars 2)

reese0155 karma

Thank you! E-sports is a very competitive and fleeting scene. Add on top of that the heavy RNG involved when it comes to actually winning a tournament, that makes it very unattractive to me to devote myself to it at the cost of other projects I'm working on. To answer your second question: I always try to aim for the top rankings in each popular game and to make content around that and the games I focus on are mainly picked based on how popular they are. If HoTS for example becomes very popular, I will play it seriously. - Athene

ShammyWoWLoL6 karma

When on the field did you guys receive any negative reactions from the locals? Anything varying from rude stares, confrontational individuals, items being thrown or just being yelled at?

reese0159 karma

The locals overall were incredibly kind and warm and we didn't experience much hostility or skepticism at all. There were only two small incidents of locals acting a bit strange and aggressive towards us but these were unrelated to the Ebola outbreak and such. - Reese & Athene

camprs5 karma

What did you see there that was different then what was being told to the mainstream?

reese01510 karma

I don't even know where to start answering this question. So so much is not only different but is sensationalized to such an extent that they're just flat-out lies. To just give some examples: how contagious the disease is, how big of a threat it is to Europe and US for example. I'm also very surprised how under-reported the incredibly effective efforts of the locals in combating the disease are. Because if it wasn't for their nation-wide shift in culture, not any kind of help would have been able to stop it. And that is why the amount of cases now is so in contrast with what was predicted by the CDC at some point last year. I could keep going on, for example how in many documentaries the locals are portrayed as savages while they're such wonderful and positive people and they have such a rich culture and certain places are quite developed. It was not a zombie apocalypse, and that's the image that some outlets would have you believe. Also the chances of catching Ebola are very very slim. And it is now more than ever that these countries need help, because of all that is needed for the recovery. And I'm afraid, together with the NGO's there on the field, that there won't be enough support. - Athene

EchoingOoze5 karma

What was the most eye opening part of your trip?

reese0157 karma

At home, I kept very close tabs on the statistics and the situation in Ebola-hit countries and it was very eye-opening to see that every number in those statistics reflects real people and stories. It's hard to put into words but it only hits you when you're actually there and talking to people. Maybe people felt it as well during the AMA with the Mohamed (the Ebola survivor), and there's thousands more like him. - Athene

bmarky5 karma

I have been following you guys for a long time, and you never miss to amaze me by the size of the challenges you aim at. Over the years, there were some projects that didn't quite worked out and there were some projects you guys had to abandon. How can you guys be always positive and motivated even after a failed project?

reese0157 karma

No matter how hard we fail, there is always some positive feedback loop. Whether it's Reese or my mom or other people that really care about you and I'm fully aware that if it wasn't for them, it would be much harder. Even though I know, on paper, that having a positive mindset and keep going will statistically bring better results than not taking any action at all. I try to always see the good in people, and even with a failed project I try to see the positive in it as: what did I learn from this? And as long as I keep that positive mindset, having people around you that stimulate that helps, I believe I can keep moving forward, even if that means taking a step backwards at some times. - Athene

Stadics5 karma

To what degree do you consider the issues of humanity, poverty, inequality, spread of diseases etc. to be issues of education? There are socio-economists that say that virtually everything is based on education or the lack of thereof. Do you also consider improvements in education opportunities, infrastructural changes that allow for access of education etc. to be vital to change humanitarian issues in the long run?

reese0154 karma

It's very good you are bringing this up, because one of the biggest players in Liberia right now and one of the countries that is responsible for the most change is China. They are building roads everywhere and employing locals to do so. A good infrastructure and education are required foundations for a vibrant economy, which translates into prosperity. I'm fully aware that the complexity of these issues has to be approached differently for each country but nonetheless there are certain patterns that bring about poverty. - Athene

Shezdog5 karma

Hey guys, watched the documentary last night..great job it was very eye opening considering the complete lack of news coverage recently. My question is, where are you planning on taking your fund raising in the long term? - concentrating on saving children or will there be diversion into other problem areas such as homeless etc

reese0156 karma

We always try to raise funds for where we believe the need is the greatest and that also includes the impact we can have. Helping children is something everyone can get behind, whereas fundraising for the EFF (who fight for things like net neutrality), for example, is much harder yet even more important. But we always have to make a balance in the effective impact we can make with our fundraising efforts. - Athene

PedoPati5 karma

what was in your mind as you landed in that ebola hit country? where you scared?

reese0157 karma

I was a little bit scared and I was afraid of touching anything/anyone, even going to the bathroom and washing my hands using the sink... I would clean my hands like 10 times. People walking around in PPE suits didn't help. - Athene

revolut1onname4 karma

How has your life changed since your trip?

reese01510 karma

Even though I haven't made any tremendous practical changes in the way I live my life, seeing how such a transformation in culture took place within such a small amount of time in Liberia made me realize that people can change much faster than I thought. For example people tend to approach disease with a lot of superstition in these countries but we didn't even see any of that, everyone had adapted very thoroughly (no touching, handshaking etc, mandatory handwashing everywhere etc) in very effective ways. - Athene

ArtairRose4 karma

Hello Athene and Reese. What was your main drive and motivation for doing something most people would think is crazy?

reese0153 karma

That's a hard question. But to summarize it, it originates from the drive to do what we believe is right. And that is more important than what people think, as that will fade away anyway. But the difference you make will stay. - Athene

atresj4 karma

Hi Athene, hi Reese! :)

I love your charity activities and am watching you and your videos (occassionally stream too) for a long time now.

Can you describe how relevant you feel nowadays? You keep doing great stuff but both your viewership and ideas have been hit or miss lately - you've made a great shot with the GamingForGood initiative last year which was a great success but then everything became really calm again.

Can you please describe how important do you feel as a gamer or a person and how your relevancy (for example the extent to which you could change one's life because of how famous you are) changed during past few years and where is it now?

Also - who are you trying to address with your documentary? Will you try spreading it or will you just stick to your followers?

reese0157 karma

I really like this question because it's something we ask ourselves almost daily. We always have to balance our reach with the impact we can have on the world. And the reason why I'm separating the two is because they're two completely different beasts. And they don't always go well hand-in-hand. Some people believe that I use the charity as some sort of way to increase my relevance but in all honesty, it's the other way around. By doing charity, in our situation, it goes at the cost of our views on YouTube, our subscribers on YouTube, our views on Twitch. Even right now for example, if I would be playing games instead of raising awareness around the Ebola situation, I'd have more views but less impact. I'm trying to reach as many people as possible of course but it's not easy and that is why we always have to walk a very thin line to keep people's interest and to raise awareness around important issues. - Athene

Karsonatorz4 karma

Were there any times where you were in a very high risk area, and you had to leave as soon as possible?

reese0153 karma

They didn't allow us in any of the high risk areas. So in Liberia we didn't really experience something like that. But when we were in Mali, it was a pretty scary situation as some sort of explosion nearby the airport had taken place shortly before our landing and we saw fire and smoke as we got out of the airplane. - Athene

TheDireNinja4 karma

What's something that people wouldn't expect about those parts of the world?

reese0155 karma

That some countries in Africa are among the biggest growing economies in the world. - Athene

Shitforballs3 karma

Hey Athene and Reese I have been watching since the beginning with Dean (Furious) and I was wondering when you will make more serious talks similar to what you did with ipower, I have seen all of the Reese and Athene talks and the like ratio is right, we want more!

Detachment and so on needs more expanding would you please make more content like this?

You could for example expand on some of the interesting points made through this AMA?

reese0153 karma

I would love to but based on our analytics of the views, it would kill our channel. And I don't like saying that, because I really enjoy making that type of content more as well. - Athene

Morinmeth3 karma

Are you ever going to attempt something like "The Theory of Everything" again?

reese0154 karma

If I could clone myself, I would go to university and study physics and quantum mechanics. But we just have so much other stuff on our hands that I don't think, for now at least, that I can pursue my passion for science. - Athene

FreakyIdiota3 karma

Glad to see you doing this, and I wish you all the luck with it! Once Ebola has been dealt with, do you plan to keep supporting it as the areas that have been affected are recovering? Or have you not made any plans that far into the future yet?

reese0154 karma

Actually, we are now fundraising for the recovery instead of for Ebola prevention. As this is where the need seems greatest. - Reese

YourBarmanLook3 karma

Do you plan to go over there again, to further your investigations or help more ? Similarly, is there something you think you failed to cover or to accomplish over there which would push you to go back to Liberia ?

reese0155 karma

I would have loved to be able to go there sooner. But because of all the security clearances and briefings, mid-January was the earliest we could go there. I would have loved to bring the situation even closer to communities such as Reddit but ethical concerns stopped me from doing that, for example: the AMA we wanted to do with the 9yr old Josephine, who lost her father and whose mother also fell ill. And an AMA with an actual Ebola patient. - Athene

Aquat123 karma

How you guys feel about the ebola theme getting ignored by the news right now , do you think it should get more attention ?

reese0153 karma

One of the reasons we still went there is because we knew the coverage would plummet and even though we would have a hard time reaching people after the topic faded from the news, we felt our responsibility was even bigger to report on it. Because the need is bigger now than ever because of the recovery, which won't get enough funding nor attention. - Athene

iLegendaryG3 karma

Besides financial support, what are the most effective actions we can do individually to help out?

reese0154 karma

That's a complicated answer because every single person has its own potential to translate their talents and their situation into good but if I would have to give one guideline, it's to just have the awareness to try and do so and remind yourself that you can make a difference. And that even if you have a setback, you still did more than nothing at all. - Athene

theunpro3 karma

How long have the Ebola virus existed?

reese0153 karma

It's been around for decades. - Athene

mo4fun3 karma

What made you choose this field of selfless work? Like what made you think you should do this?

reese0153 karma

I want to believe that most people do what they believe is right to the extent that their life experience has molded them. Personally, I have more admiration for a mother or father who works 16hrs a day in mines or similar types of harsh circumstances to take care of their family than for what we do. - Athene

TomGanks0073 karma

Do you feel like the Western World ( Europe, America, etc.) would be prepared to handle an outbreak of this size?

reese0153 karma

The reason why Ebola managed to spread so much in these countries has a lot to do with the flawed health systems in place and the lack of awareness/education surrounding disease prevention. In the western world, it would be more easily contained. - Athene

JohnJohnTheKanin3 karma

What would you guys have done if one of you actually got ebola?

reese0153 karma

We would have followed the procedures that we were endlessly briefed on prior to our trip, which are: go into quarantine, get proper treatment and well... hope we'd make it. - Athene

xHonGi3 karma

How does it feel to see the difference between western countries like Belgium and african countries like Liberia?

reese0154 karma

I believe we can actually learn from countries like Liberia. And to be more concrete: their ability to be happy with so little and enjoy the moment is something I believe we can all learn from. - Athene

LynksysMD3 karma

Athene, as someone who has been widely successful in a number of different things, WoW, StarCraft, Poker, raising awareness and activism. Do you have a specific methodology for approaching a new venture? Also have you ever found a subject that you wanted to master or help out with that once you started you realized you wouldn't be able to handle it? If so what was it?

reese0153 karma

I'm very happy with the substance of people's questions in this AMA and I wanna thank you for that because I hang a lot on the Internet and I know how to appreciate it. The best way I can explain my methodology is: choice-less awareness. What it is, basically, is, just as much as a father or mother doesn't experience choice when it comes to taking care of their family, I don't really experience choice in taking care of people who really need it. I feel very privileged in the situation I am and don't even experience so much sacrifices in what I do. And it is that mindset, which I believe to be very close to how things are, that is responsible for my conviction in trying to make a difference. To answer your second question: it's been a long road of trial and error, and there's many things I could list that didn't work out, such as for example I Power, NEE, early filmmaking projects. But the reason why they all failed is the same one. And that is that they were not in line with the current reality in which they took place. So it's very important to always be open-minded and scrutinize your own beliefs as it can help you a lot in overcoming obstacles and moving forward. - Athene

MizoreGaming3 karma

Just finished the documentary. Athene you've been a huge inspiration for the gaming community for a while now, I want to thank you for everything. Keep up the good work.

As for gaming, will you continue streaming games on twitch or will ur focus be more on world crisis like these?

reese0155 karma

For now, I will always have one foot in the gaming scene as that's what allows us to reach the gaming generation. Of course, I don't know what the future brings and our focus will be on getting our goal for the recovery efforts in these 3 countries and after that we'll be working on our own game. - Athene

Jeremy_Alberts3 karma

How long will it take for a country such as Liberia to recover from such a crisis? Also, with technology advancing and philanthropists such as Bill Gates are becoming slightly more common, do you think that because of education and awareness, people will see beyond the whole 'help the poor people in our country before we help Africa' selfish/stupid kind of perspective?

reese0154 karma

I lack the expertise to know when this crisis will be over. I do know that it will highly depend of the amount of support they get. On the other hand, I know that we've come already a long way and one of the millennium goals is to end extreme poverty by 2030. I'm very optimistic about this and I hope we can help to achieve this goal or do it even sooner. - Athene

Tasmaniacs3 karma

Do you think Ebola was helpful for Africa because a lot more people notice the problem down there now? or would it have been better if it never came.

reese0153 karma

It's something I actually discussed with Reese and it's extremely hard to give an objective answer. You need to look at all the data and weigh the pros against the cons. Ebola is a disgusting disease but even NGO's would say that aside from all the negatives, there also have been some pros that you can not deny. Such as increase in hygiene, less superstition, overall more awareness about disease control and prevention. And these things do lead to a decline in other diseases. Of course I'm the last person to say Ebola was a good thing. But it is interesting nonetheless to study the full range of effects that Ebola had on these countries. - Athene

werrtqwe3 karma

Maybe I'm a selfish bastard, but I'm curious: you are helping so many people in direct and indirect ways, while many people -like me- are only concerned with out own well-being.
Does helping others-gaming for good, ebola etc.- make you the happiest, and why? (should people try this out who are unhappy btw?)

reese0154 karma

I'm glad you're so honest about it and I have a metaphor that I used to use in certain conversations when it came to helping others. To use your words, you could say you'd have two types of selfish bastards. One only cares about himself and disregards his empathetic part of the brain, causing unhappiness. The other one is the smart selfish bastard, understanding his nature and knowing that to achieve complete fulfillment, you need to help others. - Athene

reccaman2 karma

I just want to thank all of you for everything that you guys have done. I just wanted to know what is the link that we can donate to help with you current campaign? As well as do you have any ideas about what you are going to to next?

reese0153 karma

As for what we'll be doing next, I'd say: stay tuned (we'll be working on a game among other things). And our current campaign is actually fundraising for Ebola recovery efforts. You can donate at , all donations go directly to Save the Children + you get awesome games in return. - Reese

ThunderousBlade2 karma

Do you think this strain of Ebola might be man made, maybe even a bio weapon such as maybe the sudden sudden creation of the aids virus years ago?

reese0152 karma

From everything I've read and from visiting the field, I think this is very unlikely. I do know that there is always a chance of course, but if I would have to bet money on one of them, I'd go all in on the fact that it's not man-made. - Athene

iLegendaryG2 karma

Hey there Athene & Reese, first of all, I really want to thank you for all the hard work you've put into the documentary, and I believe that it will raise more awareness about ebola. My question for you and Reese, is that do you guys believe that Athene's persona on the internet, is holding you guys back of your real-life goals (such as raising awareness, or raising money for Save the Childern, etc...). Do you feel like if Athene's persona would be more serious, you would get more attention or rather the opposite?

reese0153 karma

I really like your question. I think overall, the total sum is positive and I don't think we would be able to achieve as much if it wasn't for the Athene persona. On the other hand, it does hold us back in the sense that we have to overcome bigger obstacles to change certain views of those we have reached through the Athene persona. I don't think though that I would have reached them if it wasn't for the Athene persona in the first place so it's a trade-off I'd like to make. - Athene

iLegendaryG2 karma

Does your mind ever cross the thought or do you ever consider that even if you would had the most succesfull campaign raising awareness or raising money for a deadly disease, you will never be able to save everyone due to survival of the fittest? If so, how do you deal with that 'letdown'?

reese0153 karma

I just try to do the best I can and learn from my mistakes and as long as I'm doing so, I don't really experience an existential letdown. I also have my bad days but they don't dictate who I am and I always try to see the good in things and move forward. Because being negative can only slow you down. - Athene

Eshou2 karma

How do you feel about people who catch Ebola by accident, being there to help, only to fly back to get treated, and then return to place themselves at risk again?

reese0153 karma

Once you catch Ebola, you're immune to that specific strain. So in this regard, those are actually the best people to travel back cause they can't get it again. - Athene

forthewin18472 karma

Do you think overpopulation is a good thing? The amount of donations and help African countries receive is crippling their economy and letting their population explode because they can rely on other countries around the world for everything they need.

reese0155 karma

Unfortunately, it are indeed popular beliefs that overpopulation becomes a bigger issue through development aid and that foreign aid makes these countries dependent. Not only could someone potentially still take issue with those arguments on an ethical basis but the arguments are actually incorrect. I highly recommend watching this short video on the subject: - Reese

McNext_jenks19992 karma

Reese and Athene do you feel that there is adequate support in handling this issue around the world? or do you think the EU and America don't seem to be as committed as they should be? If they aren't what do you think they need to do, to make their efforts valid.

reese0153 karma

I believe we all live on the same planet and we're all humans and helping each other is part of what we are. I do think the countries that are better off could do a lot more but at the same time I know that it's the reality of things that dictates the rules so if the political awareness isn't there because people don't care as much, then that's how it is and the situation we're in right now isn't too bad. We've come a long way and I know I will still experience the end of extreme poverty in my life. It could go faster, much faster, but either way we're making progress. And that's what I like to build on. - Athene

eickhardt2 karma

Can you describe some of the foreigners who work with NGO's there and how they live? How does one get involved with the organisations that send in people to help?

reese0153 karma

Surprisingly, many, if not most of the locals who work for NGO's (at least based on our own experiences) choose to help their country even though they can make a lot more working for the private sector and sometimes even for the government. It goes even so far that employees even choose to work for a specific NGO because they believe they can achieve more through that, even though they might make less than when they'd work for another NGO because salaries fluctuate quite a bit from one NGO to the other.

How one gets involved with the organisations: I'll answer elaborately because my sister is looking to work for an NGO and I checked with someone from Save the Children what the best way is to go about that. She gave me a few websites where you can apply, here's a little list:,, - Athene

JerryTheDog2 karma

Do you think the people posting negative comments like "why bother saving them" and other more extreme examples actually believe what they are saying, or are they just hiding behind anonymity?

reese0153 karma

It's always a mix of both, you have people just trolling on one end of the spectrum and people truly stuck in some pretty crazy beliefs on the other end and a lot of people in between. However, very often, these people are really just quite young and don't fully grasp what they're saying or how they might be doing any sort of damage by posting such things online. - Reese

KaufenEinHuhn2 karma

What was the most shocking thing you saw there?

reese0156 karma

Emotionally, to see how some children lost everything. And it is very hard to translate it into words, the best way is to imagine is if it would happen to you. From one day to another, you lose your brother, your little sister, your parents and you don't have the luxury to mourn properly as reality is in front of you and requires you to just figure out how to make it through the day. It's really heart-breaking because children, anywhere in the world, shouldn't be going through that. - Athene

sansoomer12 karma

What would be your advice to someone who has similar goals to you but does not have the audience/resources that you have available to you?

reese0153 karma

I know I already answered this question but since I think it's one of the most important questions I thought I'd copy/paste the answer here too: That's a complicated answer because every single person has its own potential to translate their talents and their situation into good but if I would have to give one guideline, it's to just have the awareness to try and do so and remind yourself that you can make a difference. And that even if you have a setback, you still did more than nothing at all. - Athene

Zerathius2 karma

I am really moved by all things that you have done in the past. Gaming for good is a great project. Do you guys plan to branch out? You are not using biggest current gaming thing which is eSports. Did you talk with any big eSports companies/teams and with companies that are behind the esport games? I belive that while your cause is really great you are still not grasping it's full potential. I am also entirely sure that you know this aswell and it's not something that can be done within days but takes alot of time which you don't currently have.

reese0152 karma

We actually did reach out to several big e-sports companies and have done so in very persistent ways but the bigger the company, the harder it is to get through to them. Of course, if you have any contacts or connections or people that would like to help out, everything is welcome. We're very eager to promote gaming companies that help out and as we're privileged enough to live from our YouTube channel, we don't take any cut either. - Athene

jamescan222 karma

Hey Athene and Reese, much love from toronto. Q: Is there a specific moment in your life can you reflect on that you think made you such a giving person?

reese0153 karma

I'd type it all out but it's quite a story, we made a short video about it here: - Athene

Destrego2 karma

Do you ever get discouraged from working as an internet personality because of how your audience tends to behave?

reese0155 karma

Sometimes it's depressing. Certainly if we work very hard to make an important difference in children's lives and have to read the Twitch chat. But then I just imagine all the other people that do care and it helps. - Athene

McNext_jenks19992 karma

We all saw how complicated and secure entering Liberia is but how hard was it to return to Belgium and then have to isolate yourself for 21 days. Did you feel like the strain was too much also and have you found since your return that 1st world countries have made a larger impact and effort to the issue of Ebola, and if you don't think an impact can be judged yet how long do you estimate it will take for your message to be measured in terms of impact?

ps. will there be a time where viewers will be able to speak directly to save the children via your twitch and ask questions to them?

reese0152 karma

Since fever is the first symptom of Ebola, you have to go through 3 checks before you can fly back to Belgium. If you have a fever, they don't let you on the plane. The 21 day seclusion was voluntary and the reason we did it is mainly to raise awareness around the stigma surrounding Ebola. I think that the developing world has helped tremendously in fighting Ebola. I wouldn't know how to measure our impact aside from the amount we raise because inspiring people which results in them taking action now or in the future is extremely hard to quantify. If there would be a popular demand to talk to Save the Children, we'd definitely organize something like that. - Athene

Potgrond_jan1 karma

Why do you feel so passionate about saving the kids and what does keep you going?

reese0152 karma

Honestly, not so much different I believe than if anyone would be put in a position where they can literally help a child right in front of them. The main difference, I think, is that I was fortunate enough to go through the experience of seeing the daily need and being able to reflect on it every day. And I'm very aware that this is not compatible with everyone because if you have to worry about paying your bills or taking care of people you love, you don't have the same privilege to help others, which is completely normal. - Athene

asdaquaqua1 karma

What are your arguments for people donating to charity instead of helping people directly by traveling there or helping only local cases?

reese0156 karma

That's a very hard question, because people's actions are shaped through their experiences and some people have to experience the situation on the ground before they understand the need and gather the will to invest their time. Me, myself, I am a numbers person. So if I would travel to a country to raise awareness, I would always balance it out based on the cost of the trip. And if the people would be better off with me just donating it to a charity, I would rather do that. But I'm fully aware that every single person is shaped through their own experiences and for some people I would actually advise to travel to a developing country as it can be a very enriching experience and make you appreciate the privilege we have just being able to browse Reddit for example. - Athene

psycorn1 karma

Great work from all the Athene's team and my question is have you consider the Solar energy option to help those areas in need ? i know is an expencive solution but if someone can make this posible I'm sure is you guys.

reese0153 karma

I honestly am no expert in what is the biggest need in certain developing countries and that is why I leave it up to the experts to decide what to do with the funding. - Athene

Kadalash1 karma

What happens when a child loses both the parrents. Is there some kind of shelter they can go to?

reese0154 karma

We haven't met a child who was orphaned and didn't find any relatives or members of the community that wanted to take them in and charities are very hard at work to try and make sure orphans get taken care of by members of the community. I have to say though, that children who don't end up being taken care of mostly end up on the street and other things. That is one of the reasons why the recovery is so important. - Athene

Poiah1 karma

General Question:

How much money have you raised for charities? How does this amount make you feel? Do you think that you've done enough for the world or will you keep doing what you do?

reese0153 karma

We've raised more than $20 million, which translates in more than 2 million children reached. I'm very happy that we managed to raise so much but at the same time I know that I was in a very good spot to do so and I was pretty lucky. I just feel great being able to devote my life to doing what I believe is right and I know I'm very fortunate to be able to do so. I always evaluate the impact of my actions and try to learn from my mistakes but my happiness is not measured by how much good I do, but rather by being able to act according to my conscience. And I think this is also an answer to your last question, as I will never stop doing so. - Athene