Who is that man…Schumacher perhaps?

April 16th, 2013

“That man!”

“Ooh that man” and the rhythmic tones of Caro Emerald reverberate around the room. Feet start tapping, hips start swaying and a general feeling of all is well in the world descends on my conscience …or does it? You only have to pick up a newspaper or listen to the news to know that all is not well in the world.

With increased nuclear activity creating tension worldwide, conflict in war torn countries and despair in the economic climate, the world seems a very unfair place. Add the billions of people still living in deplorable conditions and trying to survive with less than adequate shelter, water, sanitation, food or electricity, and it’s not just an assumption that the world is unjust.

So gender aside it must be some man (or woman) to so catch the imagination of the musician they felt inspired to write a song depicting such an image of someone who could make a difference to them.

Music, whatever your taste transcends boundaries and it only takes a couple of bars to evoke thoughts and memories. The line from the song, “ooh that man” could refer to many great men (or women) either living or that have since passed through this life that have truly made a difference to mankind.

Was Fritz Schumacher “that man?” He had a vision, a dream and a realisation of what was required to change the world and change it for the long term. He had knowledge, integrity and insight, but above all else, he had a belief and faith that through simple technologies, change was possible.

We could all take a leap of faith and use Practical Action to change the world. Through innovative ideas, dreams could be realised, through knowledge, dreams can be achieved and through a gift, no matter how small, dreams could be fulfilled and we could all make a difference to our fellow man.

So when you next hear Caro Emerald’s rhythmic tones, when you feel your feet start tapping, your hips start swaying and you start to hum along to “Ooh that man” remember, one man did make a difference and “that man” was Fritz Schumacher. You, through Practical Action, could make a difference too.


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