Today is Blog Action Day, and the topic is poverty. Everybody is invited to think about it.  Here are my thoughts:

  • It’s not as bad as it sounds – we have to get our facts right, and according to many measures, poverty in the world is decreasing (e.g. in Sub-Saharan Africa, poverty decreased from 46% to 41% from 1990 to 2004).  This is great news, and we should be grateful for these developments! But…
  • This is no reason to stop improving things!  There is still much to be done.  We mastered past crisis, but there are new ones ahead.  We all can help but how?  To figure that out, we first have to understand…
  • What is poverty anyway?  Food, shelter, access to medicine, those are just the basics, and those are the ones that are measured by the World Bank and other institutions.  But there are many other kinds of poverty, and if you want to help, fight the poverty that you can and that you feel comfortable with, specifically:
  • Fight where you feel comfortable – I know people who don’t want to give to charities in other places – then don’t!  But don’t do nothing.  There are plenty of local causes that decrease poverty in your city or neighbourhood.
  • Fight where you can – Money is by no means the only way to give.  Participate in a food drive, donate some of your time – there are so many way to do something.

Togehter, we can make the world a better place.  Thank you.