Tuesday, January 15, 2008

World Vision

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My annual Christmas card and art was a little late - but it did come from Africa - Kornaka West in Maradi, Niger. Initially I'm always excited to see it. I have sponsored children from World Vision since 1994. For the past 3 years, Jamila Adamou (she is 7 now) has sent along a piece of art work. You can see this year's drawing across to the left. Quite predictably my excitement soon transformed into gratitude. I stared a little longer and was soon fantasizing about a trip to Africa to visit Jamila. Logic then swiftly kicked my fantasy and up popped a desire to help more children. I googled around to see what I could learn about Niger. According to most sources I found, Niger is listed as the poorest country in the world. In terms of food shortage, a nutrition survey conducted by the Helen Keller International Foundation showed a global wasting rate (malnutrition and starvation) of 13.4% in children ages 6 - 59 months, (N-1800)...WFP estimates that as many as 135,700 children under five are suffering from malnutrition, with 24,700 of them severe cases in need of urgent medical and nutritional assistance. I appreciated the smile on the drawing all that much more. Embarrassment took the final spot spot in my long list of emotions, when I caught myself worrying about that 20 pounds I need to lose.

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