Sunday, 27 February 2011

If you only read one post, make it this one

Kenya, near Mithini, 70km from Nairobi

I’m only going to do this once, I promise.  Please don’t stop reading (there’s a secret at the end of the post to keep you interested).

And YES, good people, this is an INTERACTIVE activity. Whoop whoop! Just thank your lucky stars I don’t have access to a flip-chart and post-it notes.

First things first, I’d like you to fetch a pencil and piece of paper.  Better still, grab a calculator.  Then I’d like you to use the following calculation to work out roughly the amount of time it takes you to earn $25 USD (US Dollars) per month:

  1. monthly salary divided by 30 days = average daily salary
  2. Divided by 8 = average hourly salary
  3. For those with good jobs (i.e. most of you) – Divided by 60 = average salary per minute
  4. Convert the amount you have into $USD
  5. Multiply this figure until you reach $25 USD
  6. The number of times you multiplied = the number of minutes it takes you to earn $25 USD per month
I would wager that for many of you it takes less time to earn $25 than you spend messing about on the internet each day.  For those of you who couldn’t find a calculator, that’s OK, just keep your receipt for the next round of drinks you buy, or next shop you do, or next taxi you take, and figure out how many times you need to do this to reach $25.

Why $25 Ian? What’s the significance, I hear your breathily pant. Well, it’s the cost of my recent gonorrhea test monthly sponsorship for a child in rural Kenya who has nothing, but who still goes to school in an effort to improve their lot.  It can be donated for as long or as short a period as you want.  It goes to an individual child, who you will be introduced to electronically, who you can write to, and who will write back.  Hell, you can come and visit them if you want, on the way to Safari, or the Maldives, or Cape Town.

It. Will. Change.Their.Lives.
Bit of a change of tone, what? Where are the toilet gags?  Not this time amigos, this time I’m not messing about.  

Do it now, right now, this very moment. Send an email to Geoffrey Ndungu (Founder of Watoto Wa Baraka) indicating your interest.  In fact, to save you the bother for this first step, just copy and paste the text below (content at your discretion):

Subject: Registration of interest – child sponsorship

Dear Geoffrey,
I am friends of Ian and Helen Thistlewood.  They have told us about the great work you do through their frankly amazing blog. I wish to register my interest in sponsoring a child, and would like to understand what the next steps may be.
Kind regards,
A good person

Right, that’s it, stop reading, send the email.

Postscript: Oh, I forgot, I promised a secret didn’t I?  OK, here we go, hushed tones.  There was this little girl called DarmarisWayua. You will never believe what she did! Seriously, this is Heat magazine fodder!  She accidently burnt down the tiny wood and thatch shack she shared with her six siblings after their father died, and their mother abandoned them.  Now their 15 year old eldest sister has quit school so she can act as a mother.  Scandalous huh?! (she might even have cellulite if viewed through a telescopic photo lens!). Now this is the best bit, but you must promise not to tell anyone.  Promise? Good.  So, they all squat on a mountainside, all seven children, the youngest only three years old, all malnourished, surviving off scraps the local community can throw their way, prey to child prostitution.  I know, wild! Promise you won’t tell? Promise?

I heard this with my own ears, I met this little girl, and her twin sister, and her older sister.  It’s not a secret any more. She, and many more, need help.  This organisation helps them, I’ve seen them do it. I’m not joking about.  Send that email now.

Darmaris - she's 9, believe it or not

Normal service resumes next time.  PARP!

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