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Picking up the broken pieces


I rarely get that excited.

I mean, there are all sorts of things that get canine blood racy; a walk in the park on a bright sunny day; a sumptuous  barbecue steak; particularly tasty biscuits, a well groomed member of the female species. That member in heat.

But those things don’t always inspire you. Not in the  manner that I’m referring to.

But when I see humans making a real difference in their societies, small changes that collectively have the potential to become something meaningful,  that just hits me real good.

One story I read is this piece. Its a competition run by Western Union Company and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), and the prizes include US$50,000 to $100,000 to 14 winners.

As you well may know Uganda, like many African Countries is a country that has had a cruel history, and that has experienced a fair share of hardship.

Over the years, there have been hundreds of initiatives to rectify the disparities that currently exist, and many foreign organizations are involved in these efforts. But its not been a smooth ride. Scandal and numerous accusations of corruption including poor government fiscal management have been common.

Yet initiatives like these are admirable and something that you would most certainly agree as worth flagging up, and even supporting.

Not on a massive scale.

Not at all. In my finite tykely wisdom, for the 30 people or so I know as my master’s ‘good’ friends (including lanky Simon, Monsieur Lellouche and Frau Shroeder), I think even they could play a meaningful role.

Say for example each of them skipped lunch (had a banana instead of the sushi Frau Schroeder is most fond of), for one day, and  gave £10 towards a project such as this, it could raise ~ £310.

Then, say each of the 30 of them have 30 friends (and here to cater for same social circles / interlinked friendships , practicality’s sake, and the fact that some people would donate more than £10, we’d have to include family), and they all skipped lunch some day and gave £10 each to a cause such as this.

Thats £9,300! which according to this article could buy ovens for over 80 families! (Xe.com, Sept 8 – 10.50am, 1 USD = 0.647553 GBP).

So, if each of them got a list of 30 people, and they each ‘pledged’ to donate a gift of £10, you are decreasing deforestation, thereby cutting carbon emissions, in addition to providing an essential means to 80 families.

I’m not too big on this whole greenhouse effect thing, and know it is possible to argue both ways over some of the underlining claims. Also, there are tons of organisations basking in the trade of caritas, and frankly the world doesn’t need any more. But how many genuinely fulfilling ways are there of spending 10 quid?


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