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Poverty

Please sign this petition from Avaaz:

Dear friends,

Canada, France and Italy are threatening to break their poverty promises by slashing aid budgets. Sign the petition to stop them — and poverty expert Jeff Sachs will deliver our messages to world leaders gathered at the UN this week!

Click to Sign Now!

World leaders gather this Thursday at the United Nations to renew the fight against extreme poverty. But three countries — France, Canada, and Italy — are threatening to undermine the world’s anti poverty efforts, by slashing their development aid budgets and breaking their international promises.

Sarkozy, Harper, and Berlusconi promised to contribute 0.7% of their national income to fighting poverty — aid money that would save millions of lives, and still leave these donor countries with 99.3% of their money. But apparently, they think 99.3% is not enough.

Our best chance to keep these rich countries to their word on aid delivery is to raise the alarm in New York this week. Sign our petition now, spread it to friends and family — and our friend, world famous economist and top UN official on poverty, Jeffrey Sachs will deliver it in speeches to the assembled heads of state at the UN summit this Thursday. The more names on the petition, the stronger the message that promises on poverty must be kept. Click below to sign now:

http://www.avaaz.org/en/poverty_promise_breakers

We know that public outcries like this one can work — because massive people-powered movements have transformed the fight against poverty over the last decade. The Jubilee movement cancelled hundreds of billions in dictator debt in 2000, and pushed world leaders to adopt the Millennium Development Goals to cut world poverty in half by 2015. In 2005, poverty campaigners the world over won commitments from G8 leaders to double aid to Africa. Because of these efforts millions of poverty related deaths have been stopped and millions more children are attending school, sleeping under anti-Malaria bed nets, and drinking clean water. Denmark, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway and Sweden have all exceeded the 0.7% target and in this year aid rose in real terms in nine EU countries. If all countries stick to their promises, programmes fighting disease and alleviating extreme poverty could be scaled up across the world.

But this year, some rich-country leaders apparently think that the public no longer cares about poverty. In Canada, which kept 99.7% of its income last year, Stephen Harper seems more interested in winning his election than in upholding Canada’s tradition of moral leadership. France’s Sarkozy, for all of his diplomatic efforts, appears to think that his people don’t care about lives and deaths beyond his borders. And in Italy — already one of the stingiest donors in the world — Berlusconi appears happy to slash crucial funding, even though, as host of next year’s G8 summit, his actions set an example for the other richest countries.

French and Italian Avaaz members are already flooding their governments with thousands of messages about aid. But those of us in the rest of the world can play a crucial role as well–sending Harper, Sarkozy, and Berlusconi a clear signal that we expect them to keep to their word — so please help us raise an outcry that can’t be ignored at the UN summit:

http://www.avaaz.org/en/poverty_promise_breakers

In recent years, millions have been galvanized by a vision: that ours can be the generation that ends extreme poverty. With other crises vying for our attention, the strength of this vision is now being tested. Let’s join together and ensure that leaders keep their promises — so that the promise of human potential in even the poorest communities can be unleashed.

With hope,

Ben, Alice, Ricken, Graziela, Paul, Milena, Iain, Veronique, Brett — the entire Avaaz team

PS: For a report on Avaaz’s campaigning so far, see: https://secure.avaaz.org/en/report_back_2

Sources:

Fact sheet on Official Development Assistance from rich countries:
http://www.oecd.org/dataoecd/27/55/40381862.pdf

More on the Millennium Development Goals:
http://www.un.org/millenniumgoals/

Bono and Jeffrey Sachs’ blog on the poverty debate this week in New York:
http://blogs.ft.com/mdg/

To learn more about the international campaigning that has moved governments in recent years, see:
http://www.whiteband.org and http://www.inmyname.com/ and http://www.one.org/international/

More on concern about France’s meeting 0.7% targets see:
http://www.oecd.org/document/45/0,,en_2649_201185_40948205_1_1_1_1,00

More on Canada’s backtracking on 0.7% commitment:
http://www.canada.com/ottawacitizen/news/story.html?id=9c489487-aab9-477c-babf-5d109566df2f&p=2

To see the 2008 report on governmental aid to Africa see:
http://www.one.org/report/en/press.html

To learn about Jeffrey Sachs’ work on UN Millennium Development Goals see:
http://www.unmillenniumproject.org

To see examples of how aid is working see:
http://www.millenniumpromise.org and http://www.mdgmonitor.org/factsheets.cfm

——————————–

ABOUT AVAAZ
Avaaz.org is an independent, not-for-profit global campaigning organization that works to ensure that the views and values of the world’s people inform global decision-making. (Avaaz means “voice” in many languages.) Avaaz receives no money from governments or corporations, and is staffed by a global team based in London, Rio de Janeiro, New York, Paris, Washington DC, and Geneva.

Click here to learn more about our largest campaigns.

Don’t forget to check out our Facebook and Myspace and Bebo pages!

 


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About Dave Faulkner

I'm a British Methodist minister, married with two children. I blog from a moderate evangelical-missional-charismatic perspective, with an interest in the 'missional' approach. My interests include Web 2.0, digital photography, contemporary music and watching football (Tottenham Hotspur) and cricket.

Posted on September 24, 2008, in Current Affairs and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. Nice Site layout for your blog. I am looking forward to reading more from you.

    Tom Humes

    Like

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