Hi and welcome to CausePods, I’m your host, Mathew Passy. Here at CausePods, we have one simple mission to highlight the amazing folks who are using podcast as a way to raise awareness for good causes and make the world a better place, whether it’s in their own local community or their taking on global issues.
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All right, folks, taking you out to Las Vegas, being joined by Scott Davidson, host and creator of the Living Adaptive podcast, and I’m going to let him get really into this is a fascinating story, but it’s all about championing the adaptive community. And a little disclosure. I’ve known Scott for a little while now. I actually did a little work helping him with his podcast Journey. And I’m so excited to reconnect with him and hear how it’s going here.
Resat and share this with you. Scott, great to see you again. Thanks for joining me here on CausePods today.
You know, it’s incredible to be here because, like, it’s been years. I’ve been talking to you for years. I came to you when I’m like, I don’t know what to do in this podcasting world. And I reached out to you and we started working together around. It’s awesome to be here.
It’s funny because you’re telling me how I helped you, but you helped me to you were one of the first people that I offer that particular service to. And it gave me a ton of confidence to grow it and expand it and offer in a lot of different ways. So I probably owe you way more than you think you owe me right now.
When I got around you, it was kind of like, you know, like when you try a new outfit in high school or something like that and you’re like, you don’t know if it’s going to work and you’re nervous that people are going to make fun of it. When I approached you for the consulting side, I’m like, here goes this new outfit. Whatever I’m doing here with this podcasting side, is he going to laugh? And you’re totally cool about it.
And it was so in-depth and I utilized pretty much everything across the board. And I still have that, you know, that form that you sent back to me like of like stuff we needed to work on and things like that. It was a pretty incredible experience then. And since then, of course, I refer to you as like somebody said, how do I start a podcast? How do I do this? And I’m like, I can tell you what works for me, but I’m about to refer you to somebody else you know well.
And we greatly appreciate. So where everybody is listening, tell us, what is the Living Adaptive podcast where like what brings you to creating this show?
OK, so first, the podcast is all about the Adap.tv tribe meeting physical disabilities in particular because adaptive, everybody’s adaptive to an extent, you know, but in the case of like adaptive here, disabilities have kind of taken over this name, you know, this label of being adaptive. So you have adaptive athletes and so forth. Well, anyways, there was no stories out there for that. And a lot of people were struggling, including myself, when I started living adaptive.
I remember being kind of not in a great place. I wasn’t adapting, as I say. And also I wasn’t like doing something I really wanted to do with my life. I didn’t have a passion project. And it was just a culmination of like I wanted these stories. I wanted a passion project, and I wanted a way to empower the adoptive community, my community. And so that’s how living adoptive really got started. What motivated me to do it, and then being a member of the adoptive tribe, I’m born with a congenital birth defect called clubfoot, most commonly known as that.
And I have a particularly severe version that’s bilateral and it impacts all the way up my chain on my legs. So like this was a place for me to, like, bring a community together, be part of the community and tell some really rad stories. Let’s go back a little bit to why, when you were trying to find an outlet, find a way to communicate with people, find a way to tell these stories, like what drew you to podcasting specifically?
I’m a huge fan of podcasts, whether they’re comedy, whether they’re just story based or whatever it may be. I’m a huge fan of the spoken word. I feel like you can bring so much to the table with a spoken word. And being that I was a fan, I was listening to podcast every day. My commutes were long. Maybe I was working out whatever it was. It’s just what I knew, you know, it’s something that I loved in.
So podcasting was way I thought, this is why I want to go more than social media or blogging. And yeah, I do blog and I do social media quite a bit. But podcasting is like the ultimate in terms of passion projects for me, because it’s something I love.
So other than loving podcast. Did you have a sense of how podcasts specifically could help you build your tribe, connect with your tribe, tell your story? Or it was just a podcast like I just want to give it give it a go.
No, I knew exactly. It was a very calculated move in terms of the technical side, in terms of all the stuff I reached out to you for, that I didn’t know so much what works, what doesn’t. But I knew how I was going to work with the community. I knew that telling these stories. I knew that gathering these stories and picking the right personalities, maybe their athletes, maybe their comedians, whatever they are, just picked up best in the game.
People that have already spoken on a subject on how to adapt to the various difficult circumstances. And it was going to work. It just means now I got to figure out how to deploy this stuff and how to make it happen.
So, like, that whole technical side was the problem right before we jumped on, you were telling me what this podcast is led to like.
So I guess I want to kind of reset what were your expectations of what this was going to lead to? And then what was the reality of the journey that it’s taking you on?
OK, it was a really selfish endeavor in some ways. I wanted to actually like myself, I hated looking in a mirror of my body how different it is. I have like five and a half, six inch ankles on a frame that’s like one hundred and eighty pounds, six foot three. I look very odd. I look very different. People take pictures and I didn’t love myself. I didn’t like myself. That was the number one goal. I think at first I was like, man, how do I get to a place like where I can appreciate myself and accept where I am?
And then on the other side is like bringing those stories, that goal of bringing everything together as a community and empowering each other, you know?
Oh, is that so? Tell me about the community. You’ve grown through the show. OK, so we’ve got a really strong community in the show. A lot of it is adaptive people, many people with physical disabilities, and then a lot of it is supporting organizations and that can go to companies, to major brands and things like that. And so we have very big spectrum. I guess usually it’s going to be a member of the adaptive tribe in terms of having that physical disability.
But it’s also going to include organizations like Zappos, Osprey, things like that that we bring on, and then a lot of comedians. And so like that’s open a lot of doors. You were asking earlier about opening doors. Podcasting opened a ton of doors. I mean, first, it connected me to some really amazing figures, people you may have watched on TV that have done some really amazing things despite probably some of the worst physical challenges you can imagine.
And I open the doors to connecting to them. And financially speaking, I actually rejected every single sponsor and I’ve had quite a few as the sponsor of the show. But just for what the subject matter is and things like that, it just wasn’t worth the the squeeze. I wanted to keep everything as real as possible. So it did open a door to sponsorship, but then it also opened a door to competition and nonprofits reaching out and elite climbing teams are reaching out and things like that.
And so I got to go challenge myself physically to and do some amazing stuff there. So, like, podcasting has been really good to me. But I want you know, I should add this to the best part is, is that some of the individuals I’ve decided to interview are quite individuals with very low social media followings. I haven’t been on anything and their stories have fundamentally changed every fabric of my being. That’s probably the biggest thing.
Give us a good example of that. Diana Doyle. I point to her Atun, also Jill England, but also Diana Doyle, Diana Doyle, she is in Australia now. She was in L.A. and her kid had a disability where essentially her the body shut down over time until the kid passes away and hearing Diana’s story of being a caregiver and how she went through that. And then at the same time, her sister passes away and her dad passes away.
And all of this is going on and hearing how she navigated it and get her insights on that changed me because I was so used to hearing from the patient instead of the caregiver, you know, and hearing the caregiver really changed me. That was early on. And Podcast Me Anything, you’ve got someone. Like Jill England, who’s now life coaching and doing a bunch of great things, but her story was like Fault in Our Stars, where she had a best friend, they both had osteosarcoma.
They both lost her legs. And Scott was his name to when Scot, you know, as they got a little bit older, Scott got worse and she didn’t. And Scott died while they were patients together in a hospital, spending holidays together. And that changed everything. That changed everything about me, because you hear how real life is, how limited our time is, and what we do with our time is so important.
Well, and it seems like you already kind of have that attitude, but it seems like it is only grown and been reinforced than you having done the show.
Oh, for sure. I mean, like when there’s a lot of hate out there, like in the last like nine months, you know, election and stuff like that, it’s pretty easy election covid everything is going on. And then I can sit back and say I appreciate my health right now. I appreciate the present moment because there’s so much focus on the past and the future. And I’ve learned to kind of settle that and just focus on what I have right now.
And I appreciate it. And I think I learn that from those two in particular.
What about the audience? What do you you know, you talk about building a community. What has been that experience like? What has been the best tactics for growing a community?
And, you know, how have you I don’t see take advantage of I mean, I know you said you’re doing this for selfish reasons, not truly, but like what has been the best consequences of having that community that you’ve built to the community?
How I built it first is what I think a lot of people miss out on a social media. I had to take the dive. You know, I’m in a 90s kid, and social media is like MySpace or Morse code. I don’t know. But like, it was just not great. I had to take the dive and just be out there on social media and build it that way. What was the what came from it was a lot of individuals that were hard charging individuals that joined into the community and helped build this living adaptive.
They understand that I don’t make money in this. And so at the same time, they want to build it, too, because they’re like all part of this investment to get good stories out there, to be part of something. And then it’s gone as far as we’ve built teams, teams that like participate in races and other things like that. So like we have teams like we call it reckless, adaptive. I’m wearing a shirt, reckless, adaptive right now, in fact.
And we call it reckless, adaptive, because like a lot of the audience has been hurt, spinal cord injuries, whatever it may be that has caused that. A lot of military people, things like that, that have gone through so much. And like the whole idea is like they’ll be scared to get hurt again, be a little reckless. And maybe you were just born different like me. And your body is going to, you know, slowly not go well and but you still got to roll the dice and take some risk.
So we do that together. The audience and myself, you know, if they want to participate, they have opportunities there. Also, they participate in the idea of like lifting up the guest, I guess, may come on and we try to get a good following happening afterwards and just supporting, you know, supporting that person that came on to share their story.
If they’re already a celebrity, you know, it’s not going to matter. But for the people that aren’t, this has been a really good thing.
So, I mean, it sounds like you have really gained not just listeners, I mean, even not just like you legitimately have friends, like you legitimately have new friends, new family.
Almost from this podcast, I would go as far as to say my very closest friends currently. You know, you got childhood friends. There are always going to be very close friends.
But my very closest friends, the last three to four years were guests on this show and it came from the show.
That’s exactly how you should be doing it. All right. So as part of this interview, you wanted to as part of your appearance on the show, you wanted to raise awareness and fundraise for the Range of Motion Project RCMP global dot org. If you want to learn more than donate. But tell us about what is Range of motion project. What do they do and why were you excited to support them?
OK, Range of Motion Project is a nonprofit based out of Colorado and also in Ecuador. So there’s a couple. David Kroupa and David was born with congenital condition that resulted in him amputating his leg. It’s a David went on to school himself and to become a CPS worker, prosthetics and orthotics. And he went down, you know, to help out in Latin America. And I think it was Guatemala at the time. And he’s helping patients, this young guy.
And he’s like, I can’t leave. I just helped him get a leg. I can’t leave. We’ve got to follow him through. So he never left. He stayed down there, set up a nonprofit clinic with a couple others, you know, and they set up this nonprofit clinic and they’ve been outfitting the disability community down there with legs using oftentimes recycled parts from here in the US. And it relies a lot on funding. And it’s not just prosthetic legs.
They do get some AFO users like myself down there. So there’s some love there. But it’s an amazing thing. This whole organization has not just built a way to outfit the underserved population. They also do it here in the US. But they’ve also built a community in this community is so beautiful. I mean, the we all climb together for the 30th of the ADA signing. We did that in this past summer. And then the elite team, we didn’t get to climb in Ecuador.
We plan to be there twenty thousand feet up and somebody Cotopaxi, we didn’t get to do that. But we got to unify and climb together again in September when we were so. The climb, both the Range of Motion project is offered so much to me, it’s opened doors to me, but it’s opened doors and it’s created people that were suffering that didn’t have the ability to walk. They’re now walking and they found a way to do it. And people donate their time and money to make this happen is probably one of the most meaningful organizations in a disability community that I’ve ever encountered.
And I got to tell you, when it comes to adapt aside, the physical disability aside, I probably encountered almost every single one of them that is known here in the United States. And I’ve met with so many of them and I’ve interviewed quite a few of them. But nothing tops the range of motion project, and I make no money with them. In fact, I pay to be part of them. In fact, I try to fundraise about five to seven thousand this year.
We fell short due to covid, but you know, I’ll do it again next year.
Well, once you have a link for that, make sure you send it along. Depending on when this goes out, we will subject your Lincoln for their link. But either I will definitely share your efforts and make sure that anybody interested can you accomplish your goal to support them. In the meantime, though, once again, it’s RCMP Global Dot org Range of Motion Project. And like I’ve said before, sometimes it doesn’t take a huge donation. Sometimes these guys just need a couple of bucks here and there just to show that more people are interested in helping them out, even if they can’t give as much money as, you know, maybe you would want to.
So you’ve been doing this podcast now for almost four years, almost four. Yeah. What have been some of the biggest lessons and takeaways from doing this and things that you would pass on to somebody else who, like you, loves podcasts, wants an outlet, wants to be selfish, wants to be whatever their reason is for trying to launch a CausePods podcast. What would be, you know, one of two best pieces of advice to help them get going or help them to be successful in their endeavor.
I’ve got a few pieces and I’ll make it quick. First, don’t expect to make money. This is here for passion. Don’t expect to make money in this. If you go on with that perspective, you’re toast. It’s probably not going to work out really well. It may. It may with the right resources. It may. But go on. Go on it for the love of the game for sure. Second is that save your time. Save your time.
This is going to kind of promote you, but save your time because you can spend a long time researching what to do, how to form a podcast. Why don’t you just save that time, hire somebody like I did to figure out what’s best for it? It’s took wine consulting session for me, but I have reached out to you for other stuff too. But like invest in that, invest in yourself and invest your time. Go ahead and do that.
And third, if you don’t publish, this is the biggest one. If you don’t publish that week, don’t kick yourself. Just send a notice out, you know, like that was. The thing is, I felt this ultimate pressure to keep up this podcast forever. Like I’ve got this publication schedule, you know, like when I release that pressure and just said, hey, we’re not publishing this week. And I did it again and again, it started to become more fun.
You know, things were fine again, the pressure, it wasn’t work anymore.
Well, I like that you do this for the passion of it. You do this for the joy of it. You do this for the selfishness of it, which a lot of people don’t like, selfishness, other it’s perfectly acceptable to do this for yourself. One hundred percent, especially when the selfishness is such a important cause for so many people, help so many people, connect so many people, creates a community. And so it is just a fantastic story.
Super happy to see your progress and happy where you are and you know the confidence that you have doing it. Not that you were really that, you know, not that you were lacking in confidence, but like you just you are glowing in it right now as it gets a look.
You as we’re having this conversation.
So everybody go check out Living Adaptive. You can find it at living adaptive. Dotcom, of course, will be a link to the show, a link to Apple, Google, Spotify right here in the show notes and at CausePods.org. Again, RCMP Global Drug for the Range of Motion Project. And we’ll have links that you can follow, Living Adaptive and Scott, his adventures on social media. He’s got some really cool pictures of some of the climbing he did recently or depending on when you look at it.
But like it’s it’s a lot of good stuff. It’s not just to check out my episode, check out my episode like it’s a good it’s a good follow. Scott Davidson out there in Las Vegas, thank you so much for joining us here on CausePods today.
Thank you, Mathew. You’re the man. You know, I appreciate everything you’ve done for me, too, so I appreciate being here.
Thanks for listening to this episode of CausePods. If you’ve been inspired by the work of our guest, please check out the show notes of this episode in your podcasting app or at CausePods.org.
There you will find links to their show, their website, their podcast, links on Apple, Google, Spotify, as well as a link to support the charity that they highlighted here. In this episode, you will also find a CausePods.org Barletta subscribe to this show on your favourite podcasting app, How to sign up to be a guest on this show and a link to our Facebook group, which is going to have special resources just for the folks who are podcasting for a good cause.
And I can tell you right now, we’ve got one great deal from our friends in. Page, but you’re only going to learn about it and get that special deal if you are a member of the Facebook group for CausePods. And before I go, I should say thank you in particular. The show is edited and produced by Ben Killoy of the Military Veteran Dad podcast. And what a great job he has done. And all this is made possible because of the great support that I received from Shannon Rojas here at the podcast, consulted Dotcom once again.
If you want to learn more, go to CausePods.org. Thank you so much. And we will see you next time on CausePods.