There are children so poor they don’t even have computers?! – JD, 4
Last week I attended an Action Aid UK bloggers event. In case you don’t already know ActionAid is one of the UK’s largest international development charities, helping poor children, families and communities in over 40 of the world’s poorest countries – amounting to over 13 million people.
So why did I attend? Well mainly I wanted to find out how I could use this blog to help support the work they do, but also I wanted insight into how I can educate JD (4) about charity and its importance.
I wrote a few weeks ago about Operation Christmas Child and how creating a shoebox full of toys to send to a child in need helped JD to begin to understand the poverty suffered in some parts of the world in the context of a real little boy or girl who would receive the presents.
As I listened to the talks and chatted to other bloggers at the event, I realised that the same goes for adults. We’re much more likely to understand and therefore support a charity if we see where the money is going, and the real individuals it is benefiting.
Of course, if you sponsor a child with Action Aid, the money doesn’t just go to that child, it goes to that child’s community. The pictures and letters you receive are from that child and show the genuine progression of that community thanks to your money and Action Aid’s hard work. The easy excuse of ‘it just goes into a black hole’ just doesn’t apply when you can see wells being built, schools being stocked with supplies and the community you contribute to improving before your eyes.
If you thought small monthly charity donations were meaningless, that makes you think again, doesn’t it?
So here’s the plan: Mark, Little Miss J, JD and I are going to sponsor a child – we’ve signed up and I’ll post again when we have his or her details and at intervals so that you can see how they’re getting on, and what a small donation can help achieve.
As an avid supporter of home education (where you home schooling or not), I’m also going to chart the development of JD’s understanding of other nations. Of poverty. Of war. I’ll share the resources we use, the conversations we have and the lessons we all learn.