There are 2 pretty awesome events happening today: Blog Action Day and The Worldwide Blogger Bake Off (Hosted by Breadline Africa SA, Breadline Africa UK, Breadline Africa Ireland, Breadline Africa Nederland)
Stop right there! This reminds me of many many talks heard at TEDglobal2007: To alleviate poverty Africa does not need hand outs, we need investment. Is this another case of a mainly third world problem trying to be solved with a first world mindset? Money or baking a bread will not solve our problems. Much respect to both Blog Action Day and The Worldwide Bloggers Bake Off.
Sorry, but Your Web AddiCT will not be donating any money or baking a bread. Why do we need one day to to make people aware of Poverty, the environment or any other cause? It should be part of every day.
Here are a few ideas:
Give A Man A Fish, He Eats For A Day…Teach a her how to fish, she eats for a lifetime
How does one break the cycle of poverty? As an entrepreneur, I’m a strong supporter of those who try to make a difference by creating products and solutions that help their local, national, or global community. All ideas are not created equal, but the people behind them are the ones who can cultivate them into something life changing or learn from their failures, pick themselves up and help others on their paths to create something great.
How to get foreign currency into the hands of those who need it legally?
There is this little website called www.tourguide.co.za that puts tourist guides in South Africa in direct contact with foreign nationals via the web for free and bypass the many foreign owned tourist operators. It has been in beta since forever but is functional enough to have changed many of the tourist guides lives for the better.
Unemployment in South Africa is high and getting lower. The usual minimum requirement for most jobs is a drivers license. There are also many “driving schools” who go around forcing people to prepay for many lessons with money they do not really have, give them one lesson, and disappear with their hard earned cash. Luckily we have the South African Insitute of Driving Instructors that help ensure that driving schools are fully qualified and not con joe public. On top of that there is a website that connects those who want to learn to drive with driving schools certified by the South African Institute of Driving Instructors called www.idrive.co.za
Education is also a key ingredient to alleviating poverty The awesome stars at Quirk have released the first emarketing textbook in South Africa for free. 🙂
The Shuttleworth Foundation are and have done some amazing work by getting open source computer labs into schools in poverty stricken areas.
Give us the tools or assist us in building our own tools to solve our own problems.
Then again, what do I know? All the above tools can be implemented all over Africa or the wwworld.
*disclaimer – I volunteered with tuxlabs, donate regularly to the Cape Linux User Group and may have come up with the idea for www.idrive.co.za and was involved with the development of tourguide.co.za in the beginning.
Moral of this blog post – We do not only want money, it leads to $700 billion bail-outs.
Do Web AddiCT(s); really need 1 day to focus on poverty?.