I have, since 5pm GMT been sat glued to my laptop. I got up to make food, which I then forget was cooking, which then burnt and filled the kitchen with smoke, which is now under control but, as a meal, is pretty inedible.

There is a good chance that you do not know what P4A (The Project For Awesome) is. Well you should. Because it’s incredible.


It was set up in 2007 by Hank and John Green, two brothers who run a YouTube channel called vlogbrothers and now do so many things and have so many channels that genuinely change lives – either by educating or by entertaining and provoking thought – that I cannot even fathom how they manage it.

This is a link to teach you more about it because there are not enough words for everything I am feeling about how incredible this is.

I am a massive nerd. I follow certain Youtubians religiously but I have always been busy or – to my shame – lazy when it came to P4A over the past years.

This year however, I have followed the livestream, watched the random videos as they appeared in the ‘recent’ section on the P4A website, commented on and liked more videos than I think I ever have done before in my life and been made aware of so many charities and great causes that I never knew existed that I just can’t quite figure out what I’m feeling right now.

It is not yet midnight and over $200,000 has already been raised. Being part of this community of thousands and thousands of people, all commenting and supporting one another, is incomprehensibly amazing to me. If you are not taking part then I do not think you can imagine the feeling.

My internet is lagging because I have the livestream open at the same time as other videos of people talking incredibly passionately about things that mean a lot to them. The feeling of being human has never been so present in my life, I don’t think. And that sounds like a ridiculous thing to say, but if you were sat as I am now then I like to think you might feel the same.

The most amazing thing to me has been (particularly due to the demographic of people making and watching these videos) the amount of stuff I feel able to accomplish.

P4A is not about giving money. Not necessarily. I have seen videos asking people to give their time; give their support; give toys to hospitals; give the rights to independent music; subscribe to a scheme whereby you generate adsense money every time you open a new tab; answer very simple, vocabulary-broadening questions in order to have rice donated to people who don’t have enough to eat.

And that’s why this is so amazing. Because I can do those things. Me; a student with very little power and even less money. I can do things to change lives and decrease worldsuck just a little bit. Of course I’ve donated $30 to ensure I receive my very own ‘Men of Youtube’ calendar, but beyond that I cannot help financially, so knowing there is still so much for me to do is so important and so empowering and just so obvious that I don’t see why I haven’t been doing it all along.

This shouldn’t sound preachy, but I am not always brilliant with words. Anyone reading this with no idea what the hell I’m talking about should check out P4A where you will get a much better introduction than I am able to give.


Mostly I just want to think John and Hank, who are incredible, because they have inspired so much generosity – so much awesome – by being incredibly giving and loving and promoting a sense of community without proximity.

The world is changing tonight because of them. And a good portion of the population has no idea that they could be helping, without spending a penny, by simply turning their computer on and clicking a link.