Over on Huffington Post Harold Pollack gets into the Halloween spirit.
We must be equally jazzed about bringing the world’s children basic sanitation, nutrition, and who knows: maybe a few reading lessons. Seven dollars protects a kid against malaria–not to mention the itchy bites. Fifteen dollars buys a carton of high energy protein biscuits–not the crud people hawk on cable TV–the kind that supports three severely malnourished kids for a whole month. Twenty dollars vaccinates nine kids against polio. To quote PBS, Forty-five hundred thousand dollars…. well, you get the picture.
Last time around, many economists donated through this post, because they realized that UNICEF and related charities are among the most cost-effective strategies to improve the world.
To donate, click on my tacky personal donation web page
If that’s too tacky for you, the UN foundation’s website is cool, too:
PS: Your kids might like this fun time-wasting flash link.
And for the uninitiated, this is the kind of life-saving work that UNICEF does.
The UN has found a creative and effective way to transport sick patients in the harsh environment of Darfur.
To date, sick people in need of transportation to the nearest clinic have had to endure an uncomfortable ride atop a camel or on the back of an open horse-drawn cart, exposed to the searing heat of the sun.
But the UN refugee agency has stepped in by donating a covered wagon, with padding inside, and a donkey to pull the “ambulance.” It’s not the height of comfort but has been welcomed by the 750 refugees from Chad and the Central African Republic who reside in Mukjar, West Darfur
This is possibly an even better use for a donkey than the famous literacy-promoting “biblioburro.”
Today’s discussion about climate change and refugees is a good opportunity for me to plug a new initiative of Nothing But Nets to cover over 600,000 refugees in protective, anti-Malaria bed nets. The most vulnerable populations in the world are hit hardest by Malaria–it is the number one killer of refugees. But Malaria is also a preventable disease. A simple, insecticide treated bed net is a cheap and effective way of curbing Malaria. It can mean the difference between life and death.
The new Nothing But Nets initiative seeks to send enough bed nets to protect some 630,000 refugees living in 27 camps in Uganda, Eastern Sudan, Tanzania and Kenya. One bed net can cover a family of four for about four years–and costs only $10. So, as they say, send a net, save a life.
Happy UN Day everybody! On this day in 1945, the United Nations officially came into being. 63 years later, what do we have to show for it? Well, a lot.
There are millions of people alive today who did not die from a preventable disease because of the United Nations and its agencies. Some diseases have been basically eradicated from the face of the earth. Consider polio. In 1988, when the UN-sponsored Global Polio Eradication Initiative began, there were 350,000 cases of polio in the world. Today? Fewer than 1,500. This success comes on the heels of the global eradication of smallpox by the World Health Organization almost 20 years earlier. Today, UN agencies are on the front lines on the fight against HIV/AIDS, Malaria, TB and other less well known but equally deadly conditions like obstetric fistula.
The UN is also the last refugee and hope for the world’s most vulnerable populations. The United Nations World Food Program fed over 85 million people in 80 countries last year. The United Nations High Commission on Refugees is the only advocate for all of the 67 million refugees and internally displaced. UN Sponsored war crimes tribunals for the former Yugoslavia, Rwanda, Sierra Leone and Cambodia are the last only hope for justice for victims of the world’s most heinous crimes.
The list goes on.
The SG: In Ethiopia over the weekend, the SG is now in the United Arab Emirates. Today he met with Sheikh Mohammad bin Rashed Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE, where the two discussed developments in the region, including Syria, Iran, Lebanon, Egypt and Jordan, and in the Middle East Peace Process.