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Archive for the ‘Concern Worldwide’ Category

Help Concern Worldwide Make A Difference In South Sudan

On December 15 2013, in the city of Juba which is the capital of South Sudan, on a pleasant winter evening, shots rang out, marking the beginning of a protracted civil war which continues to devastate the country over a year later. Estimates suggest that to date, nearly 10,000 people have been killed in the fighting, and over two million people have been displaced. The war has also meant that people lack the means to feed themselves because they were unable to plant before the rainy season which means there are no crops to harvest.

An impending food crisis

This means there is an impending food crisis that will affect nearly 6.4 million people in South Sudan during the first three months of 2015. It is estimated that a quarter million children are presently suffering from severe acute malnutrition. This is the worst kind of malnutrition and without treatment, could result in death. Fortunately Concern Worldwide is trying to do something about it.

Concern Worldwide emergency response

Concern Worldwide has been working in South Sudan since 1994, implementing emergency programs. When the civil war began in 2013, the agency immediately responded by trying to meet the needs of those that were displaced. The organisation began work first in Juba and then expanded its program to Bentiu where some of the worst fighting is taking place.

Heavy flooding hampers efforts

The Concern Worldwide team is working at a UN base in Bentiu were nearly 50,000 people have sought refuge. The base is located on a plot of land that was never supposed to house people and during the rainy season, the camp became heavily flooded. This led to the latrines collapsing, forcing people to live knee and even waste deep in raw sewage. People have no choice but to remain however, because the fighting continues unabated around the base.

Providing sanitation

Concern Worldwide is working to deliver clean water and sanitation in Bentiu. The agency is also distributing emergency supplies and treating malnourished children. In the aftermath of heavy flooding which destroyed the camp’s latrines, Concern launched an interim measure designed to improve sanitation using “PeePoo” bags which are fully biodegradable and self sanitising.

Flood protection

Concern is also working to reduce the impact of flooding in the camp by digging a drainage canal. The agency is also raising the shelters of those who are the most vulnerable. As soon as the dry season returns, Concern teams intend to construct more robust shelters as well as take a number of other measures which are designed to prevent severe flooding.

Providing food

Relative stability has returned to the city of Juba in recent months, and every month Concern is distributing food to more than 15,000 people who live on a UN base. The agency is also treating those who have been malnourished and are living at the camp. There is still lots of work to do in South Sudan as the fighting in some parts of the country remains fierce. By providing Concern Worldwide with a donation, you could help make a difference.

Image courtesy of Concern Worldwide

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Concern Worldwide Doing Some Great Work In Bangladesh

Concern Worldwide is partnering with Bangladeshi parliamentarians to make sure the issues which affect the country’s most vulnerable and poorest citizens are being dealt with. The aid agency is working with two All Party Parliamentary Groups (APPG’s) comprising 30 members of the Bangladeshi parliament who will prioritise the issues which affect two groups of people that are severely disadvantaged.

Concern working with two groups of people

The two groups include people who live in the disadvantaged haor regions, which are wetland areas that are particularly prone to extreme seasonal flooding. The other group consists of urban pavement dwellers. Both groups are marginalised as a result of extreme poverty which means they are under-represented by the political system. Concern is trying to ensure that the issues affecting both groups of people gain visibility politically and the agency says it is reaping positive results.

Protecting communities

The haor region can be submerged under water for nearly half the year, which means that agriculture is adversely affected. It also means that people who live there don’t have access to basic social services or communications, as a result they are in need of help. The political advocacy work undertaken by Concern has meant there has been funding of essential maintenance work to dams and embankments in advance of seasonal flash flooding.

Ensuring recognition

Concern has also successfully lobbied for pavement dwellers to be officially recognised in significant national policy papers such as the “ City Corporation Ordinance”. When the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development formally approves the inclusion of the term pavement dweller, it will ensure they get access to vital social services they so badly need.

Advocacy for the disadvantaged

The two parliamentary groups have published two books which highlight the plight of urban pavement dwellers and the people of haor. The books offer recommendations as to how the members of parliament might address the issues that are at stake. Concern is presently looking to extend the partnership for an additional three years as it seeks to build on the great work already done.

Image courtesy of Concern Worldwide

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London Irish Tackling Hunger in Malawi with Concern Worldwide

It was great to see London Irish rugby player James Sandford get involved with some charity work for Concern Worldwide when he recently visited Malawi. The team are now an official partner of the charity, and aim spread the word amongst the rugby fraternity of the great work Concern put in to help some of the world’s poorest people.

Concern Worldwide CEO, Tom Arnold, said –

Concern is delighted to be partnering with such a great sporting team as London Irish. The club has a strong following internationally but firmly retains its Irish roots, and so it is with Concern. Here we have a fantastic opportunity to speak to rugby supporters and to share with them the difference they can make in the lives of those less fortunate. I look forward to a successful and engaging association with the club in the future.

Tom was pleased to be part of the work that Concern were doing in Malawi, and jumped at the chance to visit their overseas programmes to let the club know exactly what was happening from the front line. He received an amazing reception wherever he visited, and could certainly see why Malawi is know as the ‘Warm Heart of Africa’.

Whilst he was there, Tom had the pleasure of meeting a farmer called Frank, who lived in a small, isolated village selling small amounts of firewood to survive. Thankfully Frank was chosen to be part of Concern’s livestock programme, and was delighted to recently receive a sheep. When the animal had lambs, Frank was able to sell them at the market and also keep a few, giving him the chance to feed and clothe his family. These small charity gifts purchased by people like yourselves literately change people’s lives. People like Frank.

Malawai is one of the world’s poorest countries, with over half the population living below the poverty line, with more than 45% of Malawi’s children malnourished. If you would like to make a difference to someone’s life today, check out our Concern Worldwide page for more information on how your small donation can go a long way to helping turn someone’s life around.

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International Women’s Day 2013

Friday 8th March 2013 is International Women’s Day, a very special 24 hours for everyone to come together to celebrate the empowerment of women. It is a great day to reflect on how females are now receiving better opportunities for education and jobs, and also to help raise awareness on the gender gap that unfortunately still remains. Concern Worldwide work in tackling hunger, but believe that they cannot address extreme poverty without looking at gender inequality.

Many women across the world are still disadvantaged in terms of what they are entitled to, and their opportunities to work, study and learn. For example in Malawi, gender inequality creates a cycle of vulnerability and poverty. Our picture show Doris Malinga, who is a lead farmer in Concern’s Conservation and Agriculture programme. She has been trained to dig planting basins and prepare ‘mulch’, which helps to protect the soil from the baking sun. Thanks to her involvement, Doris and her family now have enough food to eat.

Doris said –

I harvest the crop and have enough food for my family. I also get more yield from a small piece of land and it means that I can spend more time with my family. I have so many friends who also want to try conservation agriculture, so I have been showing them what I have learnt.

Doris’ story just goes to show that change is slowly beginning to happen across the globe, as more and more women are given the chance to address their health and financial needs. As the change in attitude towards women’s participation and ability in agriculture continues, they now feel more confident in producing greater yields through support from Concern Worldwide.

Here’s hoping that more is done to invest in female farmers so they can overcome the challenges and issues that still exist around the world. Women are just as vital a part of agriculture and food production as any man, so let’s celebrate their role on Friday 8th March for International Women’s Day 2013.

If you would like to support Concern Worldwide, why not purchase a virtual charity gift for a friend or loved one from our dedicated page? Here you can find out more about their work, and how you can help provide much needed funds so they can continue to help some of the world’s poorest people.

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World AIDS Day with Concern Worldwide – 1st December 2012

Today, 34 million people are living with HIV/AIDS. World AIDS Day takes place on the 1st December 2012, bringing people together from around the world to raise awareness of the pandemic and encourage progress in prevention, treatment and care. Concern Worldwide are specialists in tackling hunger in the world’s poorest countries. As part of this work, it is vital that we simultaneously address life-threatening diseases like HIV/AIDS.

In 2011, Concern’s HIV and AIDS programmes had a positive impact on the lives of over 250,000 people directly and almost 1.2 million indirectly. We have three main approaches for our programme:

  • Raising awareness to prevent the spread of HIV and supporting people living with HIV or AIDS, and educating community members and healthcare staff.
  • Increasing access to effective care and treatment for people living with HIV or AIDS.
  • Improving outcomes for people directly affected by HIV or AIDS by ensuring that they have adequate food and income.

Sauda’s Story:

Sauda Ntakiteye, 45, lives in Nyankwi village, West Tanzania. Nine years ago she was diagnosed with HIV, and just a few years ago, Sauda was close to dying – she was missing nutritious food to support the medicine she was taking.

Thanks to Concern Tanzania’s Integrated Livelihoods Programme, Sauda was trained on how to grow vegetables. Since then Sauda has been working hard on her farm and is food secure, as well as making income from selling the surplus of her vegetables and crops.

Instantly I started to feel better, and my medicine worked. I grew strong and within a short period I was able to start farming again. I live more comfortably now and I am no longer hungry.

An important part of the support and care that individuals living with HIV/AIDS need are simple items, which help to protect their health and livelihoods.

How you can help:

  • £41 pays for a HIV Test and Counselling bringing confidential HIV testing, counselling and treatment to someone needing the chance to talk and get help.
  • £48 pays for Farmer Field School which trains up to 25 farmers in simple techniques that can stop soil erosion, harvest rainwater, improve crop yields – and grow more food for their families.

If you would like to learn more about the amazing work of Concern Worldwide or would like to choosing from their range of special gifts, you can check out our dedicated charity page and become part of the solution.

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International Literacy Day 2011

What are your memories of school? Your classes? Your teachers? Your unused text books?! Most of us can look back on a decent education and are grateful for receiving one. Unfortunately not everyone gets this opportunity.

That is why last week’s International Literacy Day 2011 highlighted the importance of reading for individuals and communities all over the world. Literacy is a human right that no one should be denied, and is essential for eradicating poverty. Unfortunately many of the families that Concern Worldwide work with simply can’t afford to send their children to school.  At Concern they know how education can transform lives, which is why they work with communities on various programmes aimed at improving educational opportunities and literacy.

If you agree that everyone deserves the chance to learn to read and write, why not buy a gift to help them with their vital work? Just £10 could buy a set of text books to significantly improve a child’s education, or £66 could provide six months of training for a teacher working in the poorest communities.

These gifts will help children receive a better education for many years to come, giving them a priceless opportunity. You’ll also receive a gift card or e-card to send to your loved ones showing them the difference their gift will make.

You can help today by buying Charity Gift from Concern

Concern Gifts are simply life changing. For as little as £7 you can buy a simple, portable water filter that will help a family access safe, clean drinking water. For £23 you could help people stay warm and dry by buying blankets to support them in the aftermath of a devastating emergency.

It’s the gift that keeps on giving…

> > Click here to shop online with Concern Worldwide

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World Fair Trade Day – 14-05-11

World Trade Day kicks off tomorrow, Saturday 14th May 2011, and with a third of the world’s population living on less than $2 a day, now is the time to take action with Concern Worldwide. Every year the World Fair Trade Day aims to enable people to improve their lives by making sure they’re paid a fair price for their labour, something that much of the time doesn’t happen.

With almost a third of their budget spent on livelihood programs in the world’s poorest countries, Concern Worldwide aim to reduce absolute poverty, and ultimately eliminate it.

By enabling poor people to –

  • produce more food
  • secure access to a reliable food supply
  • reduce their vulnerability to droughts
  • improve their access to water

there is a strong chance that those participating in the programs can break free from the cycle of poverty. By also ensuring better access to tools, seeds, knowledge, and training, people can learn to become more self sufficient and produce more food through more productive agriculture and livestock rearing.

You can support this livelihood program by purchasing a charity gift from the great selection of virtual presents available from Concern Worldwide. Without your help, none of this would be possible.

You can help today by buying Charity Gift from Concern

Concern Gifts are simply life changing. For as little as £7 you can buy a simple, portable water filter that will help a family access safe, clean drinking water. For £23 you could help people stay warm and dry by buying blankets to support them in the aftermath of a devastating emergency.

It’s the gift that keeps on giving…

> > Click here to shop online with Concern Worldwide

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Celebrate This Mother’s Day With A Gift From Concern Worldwide

Mother’s Day is celebrated around the world in honour of mothers and motherhood. But every day over a thousand women die from preventable causes during pregnancy and childbirth. Almost all of these happen in developing countries and most could have been prevented.

This Mother’s Day get your mum a gift with a difference. A Charity Gift can mean the difference between life and death for countless mums to be.

For a £100 Concern Worldwide can provide a local birth attendant with 20 days training. She’ll learn about health, hygiene and safer birth practices meaning more mothers and babies will live to celebrate their own Mother’s Day

But your mum won’t miss out! Concern will send you a special gift card to give to your mum telling her all about this life saving present. So visit Concern Worldwide today for a special gift that celebrates mums around the world.

> > Click here to purchase a Concern Worldwide gift

Other great charity gifts

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Concern Worldwide Celebrates 40 Years With Much Work Left To Do

As people all around the world celebrate everything that is great about the Irish, we would like to take the opportunity to acknowledge the Irish charity, Concern Worldwide.

Concern Worldwide helps thousands of people every year and was started in Ireland back in 1968 working in Africa. Back then it was known as Africa concern and was established in the home of Kay and John O’Loughlin Kennedy on 19 March 1968.

In the 40 years since it was started the organisation now operates in 25 of the world’s poorest nations, helping some of the most vulnerable people by working to eradicate poverty and suffering. Concern Worldwide works with the people it tries to help by enabling them to improve their lives. The organisation shares its experience and knowledge with decision makers at the local, national and international level, as it seeks to mitigate extreme poverty.

Over 40 years Concern Worldwide has achieved much, however with an estimated 1.3 billion people still living in extreme poverty a lot remains to be done.

You can help today by buying Charity Gift from Concern

Concern Gifts are simply life changing For as little as £7 you can buy a simple, portable water filter that will help a family access safe, clean drinking water. For £23 you could help people stay warm and dry by buying blankets to support them in the aftermath of a devastating emergency.

It’s the gift that keeps on giving…

> > Click here to shop online with Concern Worldwide

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Take the Stress out of Christmas Shopping with a Concern Gift

If you’re worried that you haven’t had time to buy your loved that special something, then don’t worry, Concern Worldwide has got the perfect solution. There’s a great range of fun and quirky gifts that are perfect for every taste and budget, and every charity gift comes with an e-card that can be sent directly to the recipient and you can order right up until Christmas Day so they’re are perfect for those last minute presents!

  • For keen gardeners we’ve got Vegetable Packs at £33 which could give an HIV sufferer in Zambia the tools they need to grow nutritious and delicious vegetables to eat and sell.
  • For budding sports stars, how about Sports Equipment for just £9? Playing sport does so much for kids living in the developing world – with our help they can keep fit, learn new skills and meet new people.
  • And for those who like to snuggle up on the sofa and keep warm this winter, how about our Blankets at £23 which are a real life-line to those made homeless after an emergency?

For over 40 years Concern has been transforming the lives of the world’s poor and so whatever charity gift you buy this Christmas, you can rest assured that it will make a real and lasting difference to people living in extreme poverty.

> > Click here to order a Concern Gift

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