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Focus on Poverty - Blog Action Day 2008

Posted Dec 18 2008 7:20pm
Today is Blog Action Day 2008 and the focus is on poverty.

PassionateGreen believes that being green means taking care of the earth and everything on it, including all of the people and animals. Due to poverty, many of our fellow human beings are unable to thwartthe harmful consequences that come their way from this planet that we are ruining. For example:

Mwamanongu Village water source, Tanzania. "Around the world, 884 million people do not have access to safe drinking water and 2.5 billion are without adequate sanitation facilities. Every day, nearly 6,000 people who share our planet die from water-related illnesses, and the vast majority are children." -from waterforpeople.org

Here are several great ideas for taking immediate action, from the Blog Action Day website:

  • Investing in “Ethical” funds that balance social responsibility with financial return - showing businesses that social responsibility is profitable
  • Letting your local coffee shop know that you would buy Fairtrade coffee if they stocked it
  • Buying clothing from a company that doesn’t make use of sweatshops, so that business sees the profit in being ethical.
  • Writing a letter to your local government representative - yes they actually read those letters!
  • Visiting your local representative to discuss issues relating to poverty - a little more daunting
  • Signing petitions to be delivered to government officials
  • Volunteering time with charitable organizations to provide specialist, professional skills
  • Getting your business or workplace to engage in pro-poor research. For example industries like agriculture and health are particularly important to developing economies. However even industries like finance and computers can yield innovations like microloans and the 1 Laptop per Child project, that can be of tremendous benefit to the poor.
  • Doing business in areas that are both profitable and beneficial to the needy. Bill Gates calls this “Creative Capitalism”, that is using the creative spark of entrepreneurship to bring the benefits of capitalism to the disadvantaged.
Urban poverty is common in developing countrie...Also, the Stand Up Against Poverty project falls just two days after Blog Action Day (October 17-19). Participants simply stand up, sometimes alone, most often in groups, to send a message to governments that people demand anti-poverty targets be met.Last year 43 million people participated, this year no doubt will be even larger.

By organizing a Stand Up group in a local school, church or other organization, you introduce other members of the community to the cause and issues and inform and educate them so they themselves become advocates in their own right.

And lastly, giving is the simplest of all actions that can be taken. There are many, many charities that do great work and benefit from our contributions. Recently giving has also grown to encompass microfinancing - small loans given to entrepreneurs in developing areas to help them life themselves and their communities out of poverty. Participants in Blog Action Day 2008 are encouraged to donate their day’s earnings to either the Global Fund or Kiva Microloans. You can find out more about both these organizations here. -from blogactionday.org

For more shocking statistics, and maybe even a tiny bit of hope for the future, check out these great sites:

one.org
poverty.com
census.gov
web.worldbank.org
globalissues.org
irp.wisc.edu
barackobama.com
undp.org





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