Wednesday, 15 October 2008


Make Poverty History.

That's a pretty fashionable catchphrase nowadays isn't it?

Bono speaks about it. There are entire concerts for it.

At its core, it has a good message. But sometimes I wonder if we should do more.

The whole premise behind the make poverty history campaign lies in "building awareness" and "pressuring governments to take action", and sometimes, I can't help but wonder if it's a cop out phrase.

It's easy for someone to say that they support the make poverty history movement when all they have to do is "let people know about it".

Don't get me wrong. I realise that there needs to be mass support for anything to take effect. And I realise that governments play a huge role in helping to make poverty history.

But I can't shake the feeling that it's enabling us to feel good about ourselves and yet take the easy way out.

There needs to be more.

If you really want to help make poverty history, you need to play a part in it, not simply tell others that they need to do something about it.

I'm not saying I'm above fault here. I haven't been playing an active role in making poverty history.

I like to tell people I care, and I like to tell people about the horrible situation that the world is in, but have I really done anything? Not really.

I hardly blink when I spend $50 on knitting yarn for myself, but when it comes to helping donate to a good cause, a cause that will help people learn skills to earn a livelihood, I sometimes struggle to even contribute $10.

To make the message effective, we really have to live the message.

And so from today, I'm going to put $1 aside everyday to go into the "make poverty history" piggy bank. One that I will "break" after a year, to donate to an organisation that is helping people break out from the cycle of poverty.

Which organisation?

Maybe this? Or perhaps this.

ETA: This looks interesting too!

Wanna join in this ride?

This post is part of Blog Action Day 08 - Poverty


richies said...

What an awesome idea. ADRA is a great organization. They have one of the highest ratios of contributions to actual moneys used in the field. They have one of the lowest administration costs of any relief organization.

Ida said...

I'm thinking about following your example. I think your idea is fantastic!

Results Australia said...

I agree with you - it leads me to a question... is it money that's needed or is it our job to generate the will (here in Australia) to end poverty? I admit it. I stole the slogan from RESULTS AUSTRALIA - see - maybe its more than our money that is needed. Oh, and the have a conference in Sydney this weekend - 25/26/27 October. I'm going... see you there!

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