Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Missed (and Costly) Opportunities

From a CNN article today......

"In common with many other crises in Africa, U.N. officials say the late response in Niger shows how the rich world often misses chances to avoid worse disasters by reacting only when situations reach critical, headline-grabbing proportions.

Jan Egeland, head of the U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), said on Tuesday it would have cost $1 a day to prevent malnutrition among children if the world had responded immediately. Now it costs some $80 to save a malnourished child's life, he said."

In relief and development work, we can't afford to wait on "headline-grabbing" crises.


At 8:05 AM, Blogger J-Wild said...

I came upon your blog via the jinja mission team website. I was actually looking for some advice with regard to giving money to a charity in Uganda. I am not sure if you are familiar with the documentary Invisible Children, but the youth group I lead here in NYC is attempting to raise money for Africa having been inspired by that movie.

I talked with IC about supporting them directly, but I was curious to know if there were any charities that you have personaly seen working that would be good for us to contribute to. We have a particular interest in supporting the children in Acholiland.

You can send me an e-mail at with any thoughts you have.

With regard to your post. I really fear what it is going to take for us in the developed world to take the suffering of African people seriously. Keep up your good work.

At 8:25 AM, Blogger Clint said...


I'm so glad you shared Invisible Children with your group. I am very impressed with not only their video product to communicate this problem but with them as people as well. Interestingly, they were inspired by a youth group mission trip to Africa and are doing amazing things now. My good friend and former teammate in Uganda, Mark Moore, recently did some cultural training for them as they went back to Uganda to film more this summer. From what I understand, they contribute directly to World Vision who is building a great community development center focusing on abducted children returning from the war in northern Uganda. I would personally feel comfortable contributing directly to Invisible Children where their money goes to this project.

A second option, Kibo Group is a non-profit organization Mark and I along with some others are starting up. The Imbabazi Orphanage in Rwanda is one of our initial projects. We are beginning a short-term campaign for $3,000 to replace new mattresses for all 120 or so children at the orphanage. We have someone willing to go, buy the mattresses and deliver them in September. 100% of the Kibo money will go towards the mattresses and helping the children sleep better. E-mail me at if you're interested. And more on Kibo Group on this blog as plans develop even more.

Finally, I agree, it could take some very unpleasant events for us in the developed world to really wake up to the plight of poverty in Africa. For now, I'm encouraged for the recent and building attention it is getting in the media and in our culture. I pray it continues and we take the love of Christ to the poor in Africa more and more each day.


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