Launching the ‘Experience’ Revolution

January 10, 2011 · 12 comments

“In a nutshell, I don’t believe in changing the world, but in inspiring the world to change itself.”

These words are from January’s $100 winner, Tessa Zeng. A 20-year old from Providence, Rhode Island, Tessa is so passionate about the big vision she’s working toward, she’s leaving art school to make it happen. This month, TheDonatingDrummer will be funding the startup hosting & domain registration to help her get a revolutionary new website up and rocking!

The site will be the hub for an online community of “catalysts in every field who aspire to make a truly human impact through their chosen medium.” Through her design and philosophy work, Tessa has come to realize that “the key to any kind of personal change lies in experience. Not just in those transformative life experiences you stumble upon (though those are awesome too), but in literally creating experiential work.” She is most interested in bringing together and supporting “work through which others can literally experience and become empowered to inspire others in turn.” Examples that will certainly be featured on the site include a friend who wants to start a personal storytelling movement, and global health organizations who connect young leaders in non-medical fields to partners in 3rd world countries.


This is only Month 2 of TheDonatingDrummer and I’ve already discovered one of the most rewarding parts of this project for me . . . simply hearing the excitement and appreciation in a recipient’s voice when I call to inform them they’ve won! Just like Chase Night back in December, I could hear Tessa’s smile over the phone and felt like I had made someone’s day. Now that feels good!

And excited she is! Here are the final words from her impressively well-crafted donation application: “I fully intend to have a website up and running by the end of the month, and you can be sure that this is one investment you will not regret. This isn’t just a side-project, it’s my all-consuming passion that I intend to build a community around & expand like crazy in 2011. You’ll be funding the start of a revolution!”

Thank you, thank you . . .

. . . to everyone that has helped get TheDonatingDrummer up and off the ground! Several great submissions this month made it difficult to choose just one.

Stay tuned in the next couple weeks: Tessa’s cool new project will be launching soon, and we’ll get you the URL and more details ASAP!


Matt January 10, 2011 at 5:40 pm

Congratulations Tessa!! What an incredible project to launch. So excited to be following it.

Love this project Mark! Great things are happening thanks to The Donating Drummer. Keep at it my friend!

thedonatingdrummer January 10, 2011 at 6:47 pm

Thanks, Matt! I’m excited to see where both TheDonatingDrummer & Tessa’s new site go. She’s got a cool thing going . . .

Chase Night January 10, 2011 at 6:19 pm

Congratulations, Tessa! This project sounds right up my alley! I can’t wait to see your website!

thedonatingdrummer January 10, 2011 at 7:03 pm

Chase! Thanks for swinging by again and checking out this month’s project. I see you got a couple more supporters on the Operation Cats fundraiser. Way to go- kudos to you for helping out the ASPCA!

Kristin January 11, 2011 at 1:00 pm

Great work Tessa!!! I can’t wait to see where this goes!

And kudos to the donating drummer for the support – to Tessa and all entrepreneurs!

Way to go @ both of you:-D

thedonatingdrummer January 11, 2011 at 8:48 pm

Really appreciate you visiting and checking out the project, Kristin! Very cool that you and your site are all about encouraging others to tell their own stories. Sounds like a cool thing you’ve got going, as well! Thanks a ton!

Kristin January 11, 2011 at 10:28 pm

Aww thanks man!

I’m totally hanging around here to see all of the funky new world changing concepts that are going to come through here!

(Incidentally, i’ve been too-ing and fro-ing over email with Tessa a while now, and I have to say that you’ve really picked a winner here. She is seriously going to *totally* rock it. She’s got the talent, and with you behind her too, she’s now “wired for sound!”. Best investment ever? Hells yeah!)

Tessa Zeng January 12, 2011 at 4:51 pm

Kristin, you are too much. Awesomeness, that is. Thank you.

Tessa Zeng January 11, 2011 at 3:43 pm

Thank you so much, Mark & everyone for your support! Your post is so lovely, too. I’m really honored and can’t wait to launch the site + show you guys!

thedonatingdrummer January 11, 2011 at 8:51 pm

And I am truly honored to be able to help get your project going! Looking forward to watching the site launch and grow . . . you go, girl! :)

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