5th May 2014
Your kindness has bouyed me at times when I felt tired, headache-y, and unsure about whether I would hit my fundraising target. It has been encouraging to know that there are so many people around me who support my efforts and, most importantly, that there are so many people who are passionate about this issue. Your donations, retweets, likes, and encouraging words are evidence that there is a movement growing to end extreme poverty. Your actions and words show that there is an international community who is willing to support those who are working so diligently to lift themselves out of extreme poverty. That has been one of the most encouraging parts of this experience.
I was also encouraged today as I talked about extreme poverty with colleagues on my lunch break. I sat at a table with three people who have all immigrated to Canada from countries that are currently or used to be poor. I had barely finished explaining the challenge when the three of them shared their experience of moving to North America and their surprise at the amount of food that is wasted and taken for granted. I was struck by one colleague’s experience of growing up in Vietnam. As a child, she explained, her family could not afford meat and could only provide her with small portions of rice and vegetables for her meals. She laughed at how quickly she put on weight once she moved to Canada. And then she went on to provide anecdotal evidence of the progress we have made in the last 30 years as she described how her relatives, who used to be very poor, were now quite affluent. Her story reveals that we are making progress in the fight to end extreme poverty. In fact, in the last 5 years the number of people living in extreme poverty has dropped from 1.4 billion to 1.2 billion people around the world.
We can end extreme poverty by 2030. It won’t be easy, but together we can cheer each other on to take action each day and remind one another that we’re all in this together. If you haven’t yet donated to my campaign there’s still time! Please do make a donation if you’ve been thinking about it. And for those of you who would like to take further action to end extreme poverty I encourage you to sign the #by2030 petition and check out Global Citizen to find out further action you can take.