I have an unfortunate topic to cover today but considering I had never heard about it until I read about it on another blog** just last week, I figured it was only appropriate for me to continue to spread the word. The topic I am about to cover is the massive drought and near famine occurring in the Horn of Africa. In the last few weeks while watching the news I have heard about Casey Anthony being released from jail, issues with America’s debt ceiling, perhaps which celebrity got married or is getting married but somehow I have not yet heard about the 10 million people struggling and dying because they do not have access to food and water.
To put this crisis in perspective… 3 million people were affected by the earthquake in Haiti and 230,000 people died in the 2004 tsunami. Both stories made international headlines for weeks and many benefits were held to generate aid. This is not to say that they were less significant or that this crisis in Africa is more deserving of aid. The fact of the matter is that all human life is valuable and just because there isn’t some major event that catches our attention, doesn’t mean we should be ignoring these people.
I set off on my own search to see what kind of coverage this event was getting. I found articles from outraged Canadians and Europeans because they felt their countries were not doing enough to help these people but very little from an American perspective. Are we ignoring this conflict because it is overwhelming or simply because we don’t want to make the effort to help?
This is said to be the worst drought in 60 years which is causing food prices to soar over 100%. Livestock is dying at unprecedented rates and malnutrition is running rampant. Women are leaving their children on the side of the road to die in an effort to get their healthier children to refugee camps in hopes of finding food and water. The most vulnerable are the nearly 2 million children under the age of 5. How can you help 10 million people? Is it even worth it to try? While turning the other way may seem like the most feasible way to handle a situation of this magnitude, I am just simply not willing to do that. So how can you help?
Companies like Gucci, Ikea, and Delta airlines have teamed up with Unicef to raise money for people affected by major disasters like those in Africa. Subsequently there are some great products you could purchase that will help the efforts. You can also simply make a donation to Unicef to help pay for aid to help the people in need.
If you have nothing to give, take the time to share this information. These people shouldn’t die forgotten.
Having heard all of this you may choose to look the other way…but you may never again say that you did not know. -William Wilberforce
**I read about this crisis on The Picker Point, a blog by one family who has made it their mission to help the people of Africa. They’ve adopted two beautiful children and have continued to be a fierce advocate for all of the struggles the people of this country continue to face. Much of the information I shared with you came from their blog.