Note: this is a cross-post from Ins Netz Gegangen (German)
This year, the motto of the Blog Action Day is poverty. Twenty years ago, one would have spontaneously thought of Africa in this context. Apartheid, poverty, civil war filled the headlines. Today, we must admit that this problem exists on our continent, as well. We just prefer not to look too closely.
We are most affected when poverty strikes children, stealing their childhood and their future at the same time. My own childhood evokes mostly positive feelings in me. When it came to finding a project for today, I immediately thought of “something with kids.” Of course, that’s about as useful as when I explain to someone that I do “something with computers”, jobwise.
Therefore, I was very happy to discover the link for “Gifts of Hope”, particularly the project “Christmas in a Shoebox“. It is easy to participate: you decide whether you’d like to make a gift to a boy or a girl, choose an age category and assemble your package accordingly. Ideas for appropriate items can be found on the website. Then you simply drop off your package at one of the listed contact points (search by zip code). Of course, you may also donate money. For example, it costs six euros to deliver a package to its destination in one of the former East Bloc countries or South Africa.
I myself do not have children, but if I were to have one, I’ve always thought of a little girl. You can imagine my surprise when my shopping trip took on a life of its own and I suddenly realized I was shopping for a boy! Even my shoebox comes from a pair of men’s shoes! Anyway, the box is now full, I only need to cover it with some nice wrapping paper. And when it’s ready, I’ll be happy to share some photos with you.
Sounds like a drop in the bucket? Maybe. But you have to start somewhere.