The dust has settled a little for me now. We got back from our first field trip to Malawi 2 weeks ago.
Though I didtn’t know what to expect, it was everything you might hear from someone going on a trip like that. Life changing, perspective changing, shocking, inspiring, thought provoking. Emotional, upsetting, exciting and fun.
We met some extraordinary people working on the frontline of poverty alleviation. Although Malawi is relatively stable and safe, it is poor. Malnutrition is common, healthcare is hard to come by and hard to afford for most. If the seasons are bad and the harvests are bad, people die. It’s as simple as that.
The flip side of this familiar sad story is that there is hope, there is change, and there was a feeling in the air that the best was somewhere in the not-too-distant future. Like an economy waiting to ignite and change millions of lives. There are the usual and familiar issues around stewardship of Government and Aid support, with corruption commonplace at the top and the bottom. But it felt like this was changing. Bright young Malawians willing to fight for their families and communities and, with technology and education, in a better place than ever to make that change happen. This change was palpable, taste-able, it is already happening.
This sense of potential was reinforced by a recent TED talk from the familiar anti-poverty pinup Bono. Think what you will of this aging rock star (and trust me i do too) but as a voice and movement-leader, he makes a great case for the changing state of global poverty.(click here to see his 13 min talk) This is an exciting time to be part of that international awareness, mobilisation and ultimate eradication of absolute poverty for millions of people. With the emphasis on all the work left to do for the worlds poorest communities, the overriding picture is one of change, hope, transformation and the potential to eradicate world poverty, in its worst sense, within our lifetime.
Why am i ranting on about all this? I should be here announcing the virtues of joining Be One Percent (don’t worry that bit is coming) I guess what I’m saying is that the world is already changing. That we are already part of this extraordinary picture.
Whats really exciting for Be One Percent is that we are better placed than ever to invest in the best initiatives, to see and quantify our impact, and even meet with those we are supporting. How much more exciting can you get? (I think its pretty exciting)
Our 1%Member count hit 96 today. This month those 96 people, giving just 1%, will raise enough to give 750 people access to a sustainable clean water supply. Next month we will buy over 1,000 malaria nets guaranteed for distribution helping to protect entire districts of communities.
One of our strap lines is a mis-quote of Gandhi: “You must be the change you wish to see in the world” and the sentiment echos louder than ever.
Ultimately I’ve come back from the trip incredibly proud of what we are doing and more confident than ever in what we are achieving. Though we are a small part of a big picture, we are the change.
Not a member? Why on earth not?