Sunday, October 31, 2010

Story of Daniella- passion, children and climate change

It’s a passionate and inspiring story of Daniella who turned 10 this 10/10/10!

Daniella lives in Canada. She was born in Nigeria while her parents were in Nigeria 10 years ago. This 10/10/10 when the world celebrated global day of action against climate change, little Daniella came up with her innovative but very passionate idea- Support flood affected children in Pakistan by raising $ 1010.10 by Oct 10- the day she would celebrate her 10th birthday!

When she was born in 2000, the United Nations Millennial Goal of eradicating poverty by half by 2015 was announced. Knowing the fact that 1.2 billion people are still below the poverty line and the UN target seems quite difficult to achieve, Daniella also wanted to do something.

To help Daniella in her fund raising mission, Cathy- one of my friends from Canada, arranged for her to give a speech at a significant community event in Canada. On October 6, 2010, at the Good Green Town Hall for the Municipal Elections, Daniella read the Christian Prayer for eradication of poverty and announced her 10/10/10 goal. Her prayer at the Good Green Town Hall was the same one that was also officially read to 100,000,000 million in churches across the world on 10/10/10.

Starting her one week fund raising mission up to $ 1010.10, Daniella initially collected donations from the Good Green Town Hall, her own school, friends and from her birthday party. By 10/10/10 Daniella was able to raise funds up to $ 1010.10 which she donated for the flood affected children in Pakistan through World Vision.

Its fact that Climate change is everywhere, impacting lives of poor and especially of children. The passion of Daniella and her mission for 10/10/10 shows a universal love for children especially for those who are less fortunate than others. In the aftermath of Pakistan flood where 50% affectees are children out of 21 million, passions like Daniella gives another ray of hope and love in the world of disasters and challenges.

Dedicated to Daniella for her passion and love for the children of Pakistan!

Monday, October 18, 2010

Why wise people say- Every second is precious

Dear friends, I just want to say how important every second is for us when we advocate on climate crisis...

When we think about our self, our lives and our limited surroundings, we rarely believe the urgency of issues in its true spirit. Often we realize issues in depths when we personally experience them and then we start sharing with friends, family members and people in our lives. Perhaps this is the reason that after massive flooding this July-Aug in Pakistan, we are more emphasizing from Pakistan to spread the word and ask the world leadership to take real action to fight against climate crisis.

However, after seeing one of the wonderful, informative but alarming resource, I think what we are doing is actually too less than what is really happening around the world in every second.As I clicked the website link, the first alarming thing that I observed was the increase in population every second, deaths happening every second and emission of CO2 every second. I noted that just in 1 minute and 54 seconds, 432 people have been born, 147 people have died and 79,000 tones of CO2 has been emitted in the world.

I realize how vital it is to communicate and educate people and ask the world for a Climate with Positive Change. Looking at the website and as the sign of birth and death kept on appearing in different parts of the world, I continuously thought how rapidly the world is changing and how slowly we are advocating for change.I just hope we all realize how important every second in our life is to do some thing for the betterment of humanity.

Please share where you can.

Friday, October 15, 2010

October 15- I start my birthday with a Blog on Water

October 15- it’s my birthday and it’s also the Blog Action Day for water. I was just thinking what can be a good thing to do to start my day. And then I decided to write my new blog on Water- a basic human right to live and survive.

Thinking about the water crisis and then about my birthday, Iam feeling much concerned of where I am going with every year of my life. Can I really celebrate my birthday when, every year people in my country continue to suffer more and more? And why I am thinking like this… because of one of the facts in my mind right now- fresh water availability per person in Pakistan, as per the UNDP report, has reduced to 20% of what it was available 50 years before. It is not something to ignore.

Why shouldn’t I be much concerned? Only in Karachi city, more than 20,000 deaths are reported every year due to unsafe water. More than 40% deaths in Pakistan are due to water born diseases. 60% infants’ deaths are related to water born infections. Only two rivers’ water in Pakistan i.e. Sindh and Jhelum has relatively better quality, while rest of the three major rivers have major biological loads. Although with less than a percent share in global carbon emission, Pakistan is one of the worst hit countries due to climate catastrophes. The massive flooding that started in July this year in Pakistan is the most evident example in the climate change history when almost one fifth of the country area was under water, impacting more than 21 million people. While flood water was everywhere, not a single drop of clean water was available for thousands of little children, women and their families. Sindh province is still flooded.

Talking about the basic human rights, we often think about freedom of expression, freedom to vote, freedom to move freely, freedom to live a healthy life etc. What about those rights which we often neglect or give less priority in the international debate- ability to access clean drinking water to live. Very simple- if we can’t provide clean drinking water to a child, how is he or she going to live a healthy life and how is he or she going to live long and able to vote in future? About one eighth population of the world i.e. one billion has no access to safe drinking water.

Thinking about future is much concerning with the increasing impacts of climate change in Pakistan and all around the world. In most of the rural Pakistani society, women are usually responsible for fetching water in hard hilly areas in the North and the largely spread deserts in the South. As the changing climate patterns continue to degrade water resources, this is going to increase the hardship of rural women by forcing them travel more in search of water. While 10 to 15 percent reduction in the precipitation rate in the plain arid and southern parts of the country is observed during the past 40 years, the severe droughts of 1999 and 2000 in Pakistan has also sharply reduced the water table.

For the world, especially those who advocate on human rights violation must seriously take into account the severity of environmental rights’ violation, where water crisis comes on priority. This is the message that I, being a climate campaigner, would like to give as I start my birthday on October 15.

Photo: Hanif Khattak

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

350, the Street children in Pakistan and road to Cancun via Tianjin

10/10/10- It was just an amazing day how beautifully and largely 350 coordinated all around the world. Celebrating 7,347 events simultaneously in 188 countries, I am thinking what a success it is in climate advocacy.

Being a climate campaigner with The Climate Project and now in coordination with the amazing 350 campaign, I feel excited that we in World Vision Pakistan provided an exciting opportunity to the most vulnerable segment of the society i.e. the STREET CHILDREN and SPECIAL CHILDREN in Pakistan who joined their hands and voices with thousands of the climate campaigners around the globe and celebrated Global Work Party in Pakistan.

Here are few of the photos that shows how these vulnerable children gave a strong message to the entire world to take action against climate crisis. Perhaps these children in Pakistan are more concerned for their future than those talking about climate change right now in Tianjin and those who will be in Cancun this December.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

It’s less than a week time now: street children in Pakistan getting ready for 10/10/10

It is now less than a week time when thousands of the Global Work Party organizers will showcase different events on climate change, street children in Pakistan will also raise their voice and ask the world to take action against climate change.

Children in the World Vision Drop In Center Rawalpindi are busy in the preparation to celebrate 10/10/10 with rest of the world.

World Vision Pakistan is working with the most vulnerable street children in Pakistan and believes that these children have the full right to raise their voice and advocate with the world to take action against climate change. For us, this is more important than ever before especially when the entire country is facing the worse impacts of massive flooding that affected more than 21 million people.

As 350 coordinates around the world to celebrate 10/10/10 Global Work Party, the street children getting psychosocial and other capacity building support in World Vision Pakistan Drop In Center will also come forward to make the world realize and play their due role to ensure safe planet free of disasters.

Street children will plan full day celebration with different role plays, shows, painting, showcase of crafts made by reuse and recycle material, display of key messages and interaction with the civil society and government officials.The day celebration will also give a new start of campaigning in World Vision Pakistan for fight against climate change

The full day celebration will happen on 10/10/10 in the World Vision Drop In Center, Rawalpindi, Pakistan.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

This 10/10/10 street children in Pakistan will have a voice for the world

World call them street children.. they are neglected, they are exploited...

However for us, they are the same children, like those who enjoy their beautiful lives with their parents and friends....

When temperature reaches 54 degree C in Mohenjo Daro (Pakistan) this summer...

When massive flooding hit Pakistan and affect more than 21 million population this monsoon...

When 50% being affected from this flooding are the children...

Then who is going to ask and know how these children and their families will survive and celebrate life...

Nobody knows how poverty and climate change hit their lives and multiply their hardships... they are most vulnerable... but they are also the agents of change. And this is what they are going to show this 10/10/10 to the world.

This 10/10/10 World Vision Pakistan (WVP) will join hands with the 350 to celebrate Global Work Party in Rawalpindi, Pakistan by engaging the most vulnerable street children to create mass awareness on climate change and advocate with the world to seek its solutions.

On 10/10/10, the most vulnerable street children from the Pakistan community, with whom WV is working to empower them as agents of change, will inform the world about the increasing impacts of Climate Change on our people, specially on children and will demand for a strong action.

WVP, along with 350 will mark 10/10/10 as a full day celebration for Global Work Party by engaging the street children in Pakistan. WVP work with the children at risk and provides them different capacity building, health, education and recreational facilities in its Drop In Center (DIC) in Rawalpindi, Pakistan with the participation of their parents and care givers and mainstream them into development process.

On 10/10/10 these street children will perform different awareness raising and recreational activities on climate change like role plays, tablue along with the special children of minorities group, display of key messages and banners, paintings and exhibition of different crafts made of re-use and recycled material by the street children. These children will also participate in the event where the employees of the city district government Rawalpindi and the members of WVP’ Community Support Groups will organize cleanliness of a garbage dumping point in the Rawalpindi city.

WVP and 350 believe that on 10/10/10, these most vulnerable street children of Pakistan will play a role of champions in creating mass awareness on climate change. This day, the street children from WVP’ DIC will give a very strong message to the world for taking firm actions and protect the lives of vulnerable children and their families from the worse impacts of climate change.