In this episode I interview Chris Marlow, founder of Help One Now. He talks about his upbringing, what drives his empathy for the person that he is today, and what he’s trying to accomplish.
Chris Marlow founded Help One Now after meeting a starving young orphan at an abandoned gas station in Zimbabwe. That encounter compelled him to dedicate his life to seeking justice by empowering high-capacity local leaders to care for orphans, vulnerable children, and see their communities transform. His passion is organizing tribes of everyday people to partner with global movements that do good.
Chris is a sought-after speaker on topics of justice, mission, leadership, and organizational development, and he is also available to coach leaders who are looking to launch, grow, and sustain their organization well.
Chris lives in downtown Raleigh, NC, with his wife, two daughters, and a German Shepherd pup named Skye.
(03:35) When you hear the word successful, who’s the first person that comes to mind, and why?
(06:35) Chris’ background
(08:13) There’s great research on that at Harvard University The Center on the Developing Child that talks about how the kids who are able to deal with significant adversity in their lives have at least one adult that they have a close relationship with at sone point in their adolescence or formative years. At that point when you were 16, who were those people, and how did they lift you up? What did they do?
(10:10) In 2009, what happened to you and this whole journey that Help One Now has been on?
A life interrupted is a life inspired.
(15:02) What do you think was the catalyst for you at that time to really reflect on making this change in your life?
Whatever kind of dream you’re pursuing, playing it safe is never going to get you where you want to go.
(17:13) What is the biggest change in you that you’ve seen in the last 6 – 7 years, just in starting this business, in going to these countries, talking with these kids and having an impact with these kids?
There is a lot more unity, and love and care in the world than we think.
(21:37) Let’s dive into Help One Now. You raised $10 million. Tell us about the mission, the countries you’re in, and the type of work that you’re team’s doing.
(23:27) Let’s take a concrete example, like what’s happening in Haiti right now. How do you respond to stuff like that and what sort of work do you do?
(26:36) It makes me think of money versus experience, transaction versus transformation… You’re never quite invested until you experience it. What do you do to get donors invested in those experiences and really bring them in, so that they feel like an owner almost?
(29:28) You wrote this book, Doing Good Is Simple: Making A Difference Right Where You Are. What was the reason that you wrote the book and who are you trying to draw in? Who are you trying to impact?
Serving others is a beautiful, joyful thing and it should bring hope and energy to our lives.
(33:37) What would be the one action step or small win that you would tell the one listening in this, you know what, I really resonate with this message.
No matter who you are, no matter where you live, no matter what your history is, you already have something in your abilities to make the world a better.
(36:16) What’s the biggest mistake that people do in running a nonprofit, and what would you say to overcome that?
We all need to learn the discipline of saying No and being committed to our Yeses.
(40:28) What is the book, or couple of books, that has most impacted you, and why?
- Jim Collins books
- Extreme Ownership: How U.S. Navy SEALs Lead and Win by Jocko Willink and Leif Babin
- Living with a SEAL: 31 Days Training with the Toughest Man on the Planet by Jesse Itzler
(42:23) What about documentaries?
(43:17) If you could have dinner with one person you admire, past or present, who would it be and why?
- Nelson Mandela
- Steve Jobs