Thursday, March 28, 2013

What if Gandalf Started an NGO?

  (conceived by Kanya D'Almeida and developed by QMS)

The battle of Helm's Deep was drawing nigh. Aragorn paced the parapets nervously as the forces of Mordor advanced on the horizon. The Orc army was ruthless, merciless and would leave no survivors. But beneath even this bottomless army was a greater threat still; the immense power accumulating in the tower of Mordor. Even as it sent its armies forth to pillage the countryside and destroy all resistance, it was busy laying waste to forests and rivers, destroying everything in its insatiable growth. If the Fellowship of the Ring survived the chaos which was about to be unleashed upon them, their battle would not be over, for the rapacious evil of Mordor would never cease until its ruling ring was destroyed once and for all.

While the warriors in Helm's Deep grimaced with the near certainty that they would not survive the day, Aragorn and his close comrades held out some hope yet, for they knew that Gandalf was out there, gathering forces to come to their aid. 

They had of course hoped for him to raise an army, and the recent turn of events left them nervously perplexed. Gandalf sent word that he had started an NGO, with not-for-profit status, official recognition, and a seat at the table of the United Kings of Middle Earth. 

Everyone knew that the Kings were either bought off by promises of wealth and power from Mordor, or squabbling over the scraps that would remain from the battle to come. But Gandalf assured them that all was not yet lost, and that it was important for them not to lose their ability to negotiate. 

While it was difficult to persuade his followers of the logic of this course of action, Aragorn knew that the ways of the White Wizard were strange and mysterious. Perhaps they would lose Helm's Deep today, and perish in the battle. Perhaps the armies of Mordor would continue to chop down the forests and scour the depths of the earth for its metals and treasures, and enslave all the creatures of Middle Earth. But at least they could fight bravely today knowing that Gandalf was doing really good work.

Even now while the Orc armies readied their catapults, he was doubtless extremely busy, coordinating and attending meetings, networking, writing press releases and applying for patronage to the kings of Middle Earth for further research, investigation and organizing conferences of concerned creatures. 

In the distance Aragorn could now make out the giants, bred in the hellish bowels of Mordor, preparing to unleash their immense wrath on anything that stood in their path. He shivered at the sight of the mostly inexperienced young warriors, unready and yet forced to stake their lives on the defense of Middle Earth. But he was humbled and comforted by the knowledge that Gandalf was hard at work organizing community based partnerships with local stakeholders and implementing capacity building workshops and leadership trainings with youth.

Coming next in this series: What if Voldemort started a foundation for social and environmental justice?