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Today (Oct. 15th) is Blog Action Day, and I intend to do my small part by joining more than 9,000 other bloggers who are writing about poverty today.
According to United Nations, more than 25,000 people die of conditions related to poverty every single day. That’s one death to poverty every three and a half seconds. Hard to believe if you, like me, live in relative peace and prosperity in a suburb populated by some of the very Wall Street folks we’ve all been reading about lately. Where often the most pressing problem of the day is whether to purchase a BMW or a Mercedes, or where you’d prefer to eat lunch: Bloomingdales or Bergdorf.
I had the distinct advantage of being able to read some of the blogs already written today by bloggers on the other side of the world, where today for them actually happened yesterday. On the Blog Action Day website, I’ve read posts already filed by bloggers in Sydney, Tokyo, Delhi, Beijing, Istanbul and elsewhere. They have written, often passionately, about how we all need to pitch in if worldwide poverty is to someday be obliterated.
For me, one of the most disturbing and moving examples of poverty is taking place in the Sudan, where civil war and genocide has wiped out so many people. Those who are left live in abject poverty, in refugee camps, and without a future. And as the United Nations has pointed out, so many victims of poverty, including in the Sudan, have been children.
I have been most inspired by the story of the Lost Boys of the Sudan, the young boys who were able to escape the genocide that took place in their country because they were away from their families, working on farms or tending to livestock. Many of them were able to barely escape, and some traveled for years in search of a safe place where they could get help.
I dedicate by blog post today to the Lost Boys, whose stories have been told in a number of documentaries in recent years and in several books. Make the story of the Lost Boys a lesson in your classrooms or your comfortable homes in the coming weeks. After all, knowledge is power. Here are some resources:
The Lost Boys Film Website
God Grew Tired Of Us, the website dedicated to the film of the same name and the book by former lost boy, John Dau
The John Dau Sudan Foundation, the foundation started by former lost boy John Dau
The Alliance for the Lost Boys
Refugee Council USA
South Sudanese Friends Council
Project Love Sudan (organization the helps U.S. schools send books to children in Sudan)
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