Why Martin is Involved

My outlook on giving back is defined by the verse Luke 12:48, “To whom much is given, much is required.” To be honest, my life has been very blessed. Ever since I was young, I only ever wanted to be a racing driver, and I was very lucky to have the most amazing people supporting that dream. What made them particularly amazing is that they weren’t required to go the extra mile for me, they chose to. I can’t be sure what it was that they saw in me, but it was their example that instilled in me the value of paying it forward.

“Pay it forward” is a simple concept: instead of paying back a good deed to the giver, pass it on to someone else instead. The idea is if I can touch a mere two people’s lives, and each of them touches two more people’s lives, and so on and so forth continuing down the line, there’s no telling what goodwill can be achieved from one single action.

A while back before I raced in IndyCar, my fiancee Nicole asked me an important question, “What will be the point of your celebrity?” It took me back and really made me think. So often we see celebrities waste their influence, assuming that they are not role models simply because they do not want to be. Despite all intentions, if you’re in the public eye you have an influence, and it’s up to you to choose how to use it. We took the rest of the evening to talk about how celebrity is wasted without a positive mission behind it. Yes, being a more popular driver and having more followers has personal benefits such as increasing sponsors’ interest, but what benefit does that do the greater good?

I want to be the kind of person who gives my all in every situation. I want to pass on goodwill to others. I want to make a difference, no matter how small. I want to make others feel special and appreciated. I want to be a good example. I want to improve the world I live in. And I want to motivate others to become their best. Fortunately, I have a huge platform of racing to amplify these goals. But even if I weren’t in a race car, I would strive to meet these in every way I could.

The beauty of volunteerism and community involvement is that everyone can do it, every little bit counts, and the volunteer often receives just as much as the people who are served. Finding a cause you believe in will help motivate you to make a difference. I chose the organizations I work with because I have a strong emotional pull toward them. I continue to work with them because of the positive impact I know that I make.

– Martin Plowman