If you are reading the news about recent global crises and you’re feeling overwhelmed and impotent, I’ve always found that actually doing something seems to help allay my feelings of helplessness.
To help aid victims of Cyclone Nargis in Myanmar, I’m encouraging donations through the International Development Enterprises. IDE Myanmar opened in 2004 and is one of the few organizations that is doing both relief and development work in all of the affected areas and also has government permission to go into them. Donations to IDE Myanmar will be used for relief aid to survivors of the cyclone in the Irrawaddy Delta region, many of whom have no shelter, food or fuel. Most critically, IDE will initially focus on providing immediate relief but will also plan for rebuilding communities to be self sufficient in the long-term.
On a wider front, Avaaz.org is organizing a campaign to deliver the following petition to G8, UN and EU leaders to respond to the growing world food crisis::
We call on you to take immediate action to address the world food crisis by mobilizing emergency funding to prevent starvation, removing perverse incentives to turn food into biofuels and managing financial speculation, and to tackle the underlying causes by ending harmful trade policies and investing massively in sustainable agricultural productivity in developing nations.
(For important background on the food crisis, I recommend this excellent NY Times editorial.)