Monthly Archives: March 2012

David’s bright idea

Do you give money to beggars? I can think of plenty of reasons why such giving is not a good idea. Then, I’ll see some destitute woman shivering in the cold, and I’ll feel compelled to press a few dollars in her hand.

The glamor of a brothel raid

Rich Stearns, president of World Vision U.S., shares a story from his recent visit to Cambodia that highlights the numerous interventions required to fight poverty, injustice, and oppression -- those that are dramatic and highly-publicized, as well as those that are less conspicuous but equally critical.

Mauritania: Making the Triangle of Poverty a Triangle of Hope

Traveling across West Africa, World Vision communications manager Jonathan Bundu is collecting stories of women and children impacted by the current drought and food crisis. Below are reflections from his time in Mauritania, in a region called the Triangle of Poverty.

*     *     *

Help save lives: Bring Malaria Sunday to your church

Every 60 seconds, malaria claims another victim.

A single mosquito bite can be a death sentence for people who lack access to medical treatment. What makes malaria deaths particularly tragic is that they are fully preventable -- and some of malaria’s most common victims are children under 5.

Clean water is life: Improvements to wells in Zambia

Samuel Mwinda Mwanangombe is World Vision’s design, monitoring, and evaluation officer for the water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) program in Zambia. Samuel has worked for World Vision for three years, motivated by the opportunity to improve the quality of life for vulnerable and marginalized people -- especially orphans, widows, and those with disabilities -- by helping them realize their own potential to be agents of change.

He is dedicated to WASH because he’s seen firsthand the changes it has produced in communities and the lives of children. Samuel has seen God work through the WASH sector in Zambia, providing those in need with clean water, improved sanitation, and hygiene education to sustain their lives. Here, Samuel shares an example of that success, which he witnessed in a community where he works.

Dirty water for now -- but clean water is in the works

Water: It’s such a simple thing, but if you don’t have enough, it takes over your life.

That’s what 13-year-old Zinhle Dlamini told me. Getting water for her family in rural Swaziland is a two-hour-per-day chore. And the dirty water they get is not nearly enough for all the drinking, cooking, cleaning, and bathing for a household of 10 people.

Dealing with "First World Problems"

My friends and I have a saying that we thought was unique -- until we discovered that it already has a popular Twitter hashtag and YouTube video.

"First World Problems."

At one time, we thought we’d create a blog based off the concept and make millions that we could donate to charities to save lives. But we weren't the first to think of the idea. Woe is us. Maybe our disappoint is, in itself, a drop in the bucket of #firstworldproblems.

Q&A with our clean water expert in Uganda

Leading up to World Water Day on March 22, we're going to do a series of posts about our work in the area of water and sanitation, giving you some ideas of how to get involved.

Back in November, I got to see some of our clean water programs in northern Uganda, a place that is still scarred by decades of brutal civil war with Joseph Kony's Lord's Resistance Army (LRA). I never knew how complex the solution to the problem of clean water could be -- but I got to learn from some experts and ask a lot of questions.

One of the most informative conversations I had was with John Steifel, World Vision's Uganda water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) program coordinator. His explanations were so good, I thought I'd share them with you.

Standing side-by-side with northern Uganda

You may have noticed that there’s been a lot of talk recently about Joseph Kony and the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA). That’s a good thing.

Kony and the LRA terrorized northern Uganda for 20 years. They continue to terrorize the people of the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), South Sudan, and Central African Republic. It’s now time for you to harness your attention and passion: Act to do the most good for the children most hurt by Kony’s campaign of terror.

The LRA continues to kill, maim, and abduct children in DRC, South Sudan, and Central African Republic. Mercifully, though, peace has come to northern Uganda. We now have the opportunity to join hand-in-hand with the people of this region to build a bright future for them and their children.

World Vision is partnering with communities across Uganda to ensure that the conditions that allowed the LRA to form in the first place are never allowed to emerge again.

You can now join in that partnership.

International Women's Day: Having it all in Cambodia

Today is International Women's Day. We honor the remarkable achievements of women like Konitha, a mother and entrepreneur in Cambodia who used World Vision business loans to build a life of dignity and hope for herself and her children.

*     *     *

When I was 12, my mother bought me Helen Gurley Brown’s book, "Having It All." The book offered advice on how a woman could succeed at everything -- love, work, and family. My mother knew even then that her overachieving daughter would have difficulty choosing between having a family and having a career.

"Without your help, we are hopeless"

Imagine yourself in a dry, hot, dusty landscape, where water sources are scarce, and where parents don't know whether they have enough food for their children for the day -- or where tomorrow's food will even come from. This is a glimpse into the West African country of Mali, where the regional drought and food crisis is intensifying quickly.