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How to Save a Life – Thoughts on the Crisis in Somalia



  • August 12, 2011
Noel Brewer Yeatts

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In the hills of rural Guatemala, Blanca, a 3-year-old girl, is on the verge of death. The reason? Lack of food and water. Not many people know where Blanca lives. Her story will never hit the evening news. Her family lives in extreme poverty and the chance of them finding help for their suffering daughter is slim.

You will not spend much time thinking about Blanca after you read this. Her life will be easy for you to forget. And that is what I am trying to change.

I just returned from Guatemala where I helped document on video the story of suffering children that the beautiful mountains hide. I want to use my voice to tell their story. If people know, they will help. They will not be able to forget . . . right?

I arrived back home to hear of the growing crisis in the Horn of Africa. Children are dying from the same thing I had just seen in Guatemala—yet this situation was receiving coverage from the media. In the past three months alone, 30,000 children have died and 600,000 children are on the brink of starvation. To make matters worse, the World Food Program reports that they have less than three weeks of food left.

But despite these unimaginable numbers, I am becoming increasingly aware that it is still easy to forget and ignore.

In an interview on CNN with Anderson Cooper, Bono, lead singer of the band U2 and modern-day activist, said:

People seem to prefer watching people in the high streets of London fight policeman rather than watching children in Somalia fighting for their lives. People watch stock values crumble while I think about our own sense of values tumbling. This will define who we are. This is a defining moment for us . . . It is not our intentions, it is our actions . . . it is our priorities that define us.

There is no doubt that more people are going to die in this crisis. But the looming questions are:  “How many more?” and “How many can be saved?”

The U.N. estimates that nearly 1 million people will die if aid does not arrive quickly. And that is what I want to see change. A World Help team is headed to Kenya, to the location of what is now referred to as the largest refugee camp in the world to ensure our aid will get to those who need it the most and save as many lives as possible.

If the complexity of this issue and the large overwhelming numbers are leaving you wondering what in the world you can do to help or make a difference—let me help answer that question for you.

Want to know what you can do? Something. Just do something. No donation, gift or prayer is too small.

Let’s prove to the world that we are not too self-absorbed to care . . . that we will not give up on the continent of Africa . . . and that our sense of humanity is stronger than our own economic fears.

When asked what could be done, one Somali woman said, “It is with God.”

Yes . . . it is with God. And God is calling out to us.

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Today, we can make a difference in the face of one of the most devastating humanitarian disasters of our time. Call toll free 800-541-6691 to place a gift on your credit card, or click here to give online. You can also donate $10 by texting WORLDHELP to 85944 or set-up your own fundraising page at crisis.worldhelp.net.

For other blog posts on the continuing crisis in Somalia, visit http://whelp.us/HornofAfrica.

 

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