Bono says, “The famine is really the wake-up call for all of us.”
It should be, but is it?
He says, “We know exactly what to do with droughts. You can blame droughts on God, but famines are man-made. We know exactly what to do and this shouldn’t be happening.”
People are ensuring that the people in the Horn of Africa are suffering, are dying. We are all complicit.
K’naan says, “We have to find some way to globalize our humanity.” and “Because of the past… I think people have created a psychological fence around their hearts where Somalia is concerned.”
More than 12 million people over several countries in the Horn of Africa are suffering beyond what anyone should ever suffer. This is unlike anything they have seen in decades. It is not just another crisis we can turn our backs on.
Children are starving. They are fighting for their lives. What is more important than the health of children. Yes, the statistics are startling. 600,000 children are on the brink of starvation. 30,000 have died this summer. Yes, this is overwhelming to comprehend.
I understand the psychology behind why people are able to tune out the statistics, it is simply too staggering.
Joseph Stalin said, “The death of one person is a tragedy; the death of millions is a statistic.” He would know.
Learn more about Anderson Cooper’s reporting on the famine crisis in Somalia.
But, seriously? Why are the London riots being paid more attention? Why is the story, “Why are moms dressing like their teen daughters?” one of the top headlines?
Make a conscious choice to not turn away, choose to listen even when it is horrific (and it will be), and try to realize what is going on and to do something about it.
The call to action:
- ONE – actively addressing the crisis in two ways: by raising awareness of the famine and needed response through social and traditional media, and by pressing world leaders to step up and quickly fill the $1 billion funding gap for emergency assistance.
- UNICEF – saving lives by stepping up their emergency response to the crisis in Somalia and the rest of the Horn of Africa. So far, the agency has brought in enough supplies to feed 65,000 children in southern Somalia. An estimated $177 million will be needed to reach all Somali children in need over the next six months.
- Mercy Corps – teams in Ethiopia, Somalia and Kenya are responding, by distributing food and water and expanding critical relief efforts. Mercy Corps is on the ground helping more than one million people in the region survive, and are ramping up to help even more.
- Doctors Without Borders – Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) is responding to medical needs, including treatment of around 10,000 malnourished people in and around the Dadaab camp.
- See a full list of organizations on the ground and saving lives.
- Share. That psychology I was talking about? People are not motivated by statistics as they are by personal experience. Sharing information with people in a meaningful way can create greater change.
Help save the life of this child….
photo credit: IHH Humanitarian Relief Foundation/TURKEY