“All the light in the world cannot extinguish the light of a single candle – Francis of Assisi”
In these times of global economic woes and escalating tensions in parts of the world ranging from the Middle East to the Korean peninsula little or no space is devoted to the biggest scourge that mankind faces-the scourge of poverty, destitution, malnutrition and disease. Every year millions of babies die for want of food, medicines, shelter and basic care. Those that would care for them cannot do so, as they are themselves in the same situation and in need of succor as well.
Consider this- close to half of the population of the world lives on less than a $2.50 a day. What would you be able to buy with this small sum of money? A cup of coffee at Starbucks would cost that much. Yet 3 billion people live their daily lives on this tiny sum of money. Still their lot is a great deal better than the 1.3 billion who live on less than $1.25(half a cup of Starbucks coffee) a day. It’s appalling and a crying shame. 22000 children die due to poverty every single day!
How can we let this happen? How can we let children die of poverty? It is very much in our hands to step in and stop these massacres from happening, for this is what they are (Massacres)!! Our not lifting a finger to address these issues is as bad as allowing Hitler to march the Jews to the gas chambers by the millions. According to the World Food Programme, “The poor are hungry and their hunger traps them in poverty.” We have half the world throwing away food by the truck load and half the world dying on hunger & starvation. More people die of hunger, than of any other cause – a telling commentary on the state of mankind.” We would commit billions on sending man to far off planets like Mars, yet not care for the hungry child dying on a pavement in some hot and dusty third world street right here on our planet?
I know what it feels to be that sick and neglected child on some dusty third world street, bereft of any hope, wondering when I would get my next meal. I along with my brothers and sisters lived in squalor and filth in the slums of Calcutta, not knowing the security of a roof over our heads, and watching one sibling after another die of starvation and disease. Yet with the little help we got from some well disposed people, some of whom were as desperate as us, we managed to survive. We had access to free education, and that eventually helped us script an unbelievable story of coming out of poverty and achieving more than our most frenzied dreams.
Assistance in any form and of any size can help. From salaried individuals, professionals, small time businessmen to corporate head honchos, multinational companies, governments and aid organizations-everybody needs to pitch in. The help can be in the shape of money, expertise, voluntary work, training or howsoever one wishes to go about it. But there is not a minute to lose, because somewhere there is an innocent little child whose dies in her mother’s arms, an elderly person whose fever won’t go or a worried father who is unable to feed his children due to being too weak himself. Go out and embrace these people as your own. With just a little help from any one of us, they could not only live but live with hope, just as we do!
No one has ever become poorer by giving. – Anne Frank-Diary of Anne Frank
The Inspiring Women’s Team of Remedia Trust (www.remediatrust.org) will be leading a march on the eve of Women’s Day (March 7th) to help women who come from very dark backgrounds -back into the light!!