Sunday, March 3, 2013

What do YOU Care About? What will YOU do?

Yesterday I wrote about tackling huge social issues by focusing on solutions- finding one thing you can do to help. I'm proud to belong to an organization, Soroptimist International that embraces that philosophy as a group and also on a personal level with our members.  

In 2012 alone, Soroptimist International of Saratoga County donated $16,000 to local organizations that help women and girls. They’ve provided impressive support to local organizations for over 35 years. But last year they set the bar even higher and decided to make a global impact by donating over $10,000 to support four global initiatives in marginalized communities in Ecuador, Uganda, and Haiti. 

Dollars raised here in Saratoga at Soroptimist’s Cabin Fever and Secret Garden fundraisers are saving lives across the globe. For example, by partnering with The Giving Circle, our club was able to build a birthing center in the Kagoma Gate Village: Here the ’forgotten people of Uganda’, wartime refugees work as impoverished laborers in the sugar cane fields Their lives  are filled with poverty and injustice we cannot even imagine: children dying from infections that would be easily treated in our country, starvation, child abduction and child sacrifice. 

While the giving Circle has been working to create sanitation and a school, Soroptimist focused on the needs of women. The women of Kagoma Gate Village gave birth in huts on the dirt floor without light, water, medical care or sanitation. Infant and maternal mortality rates were high. But now the community has a clean building for women to give birth… and even the first electric light bulb in the village… all from funds raised at two really fun events.  

It’s daunting to figure out how to fix a social problem… but it’s easy to identify one thing you can do to help.

Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world.
Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.
Margaret Mead

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