Friday, April 2, 2010

Finished my book

I just finished reading "The Hole in Our Gospel".  It is an amazing book, and I highly recommend it.  It does a great job showing us just how fortunate we are to be in America.  Did you realize that if you make $50,000 a year, you are wealthier than 99% of the people in the world?  That was an amazing statistic to me.  So much wealth is concentrated in a handful of people.  This statistic really put this discrepancy into perspective:

- In 1820, the gap between the richest and poorest countries was about 4 to 1
- In 1913, the gap had grown to 11 to 1
- In 1950, 35 to 1
- In 2002, 75 to 1

In less than 200 years, look at how wide the chasm of wealth in our world has become.  This lack of money/resources is the root cause of many of the issues that poorer countries face.  Think of all the things we have and often take for granted: access to health care, clean water, unlimited sources/varieties of food.  Why do we have these things?  The majority of us were fortunate enough to be born in a country with these luxuries.

So, what can you do to help others around the world who weren't born in a country with these luxuries?  Here are a few ideas for you:

Mocha Club - For $7 a month (the price of 2 mochas), you can choose to help any of a number of causes throughout Africa (Women in poverty, orphans, clean water, etc...)

Kiva - This is a microfinance program that provides loans to people around the world looking to start or develop a business.  You can read about the people, and choose who you want to loan to.  For as little as $25, you can help someone across the world better their life.  Then, they pay you back, and you can use that money to help someone else.

Compassion or World Vision - These are both reputable programs that let you sponsor a child around the world.  You'll be able to communicate with the child, and hear how your support is changing their life.

Feed My Starving Children - This is a more hands on opportunity.  It is an organization in Minnesota and Aurora, IL.  You can go there and package food for children around the world.  In a 2 hour shift, each volunteer will usually package enough food to feed a child for a YEAR

Anyone else have other ways to help out the less fortunate?  Post a comment and let us hear about it.  :)

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