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Archive for the ‘international relief’ Category

Today Is World Malaria Day

Posted on April 25th, 2008 by Casey in advocacy, international relief, malaria, world health + AIDS 0 Comments

One of the world’s deadliest diseases – malaria – is an indiscriminate killer, affecting all age groups and primarily found in the worlds poorest nations, whose populations are least able to combat it. WORLD MALARIA DAY was established in order to raise awareness for and understanding of malaria as a global emergency that is both preventable and curable. It replaces ‘Africa Malaria Day’ which has been commemorated on April 25 since 2001.

Africa Malaria Day was a day that was set aside by African governments committed to rolling back malaria and meeting the United Nations malaria-related Millennium Development Goals. But now Member states of the World Health Organization agree that greater awareness is needed. It is hoped that with an internationally recognized WORLD MALARIA DAY, communities and organizations worldwide will mobilize and get involved in this continuing battle.

You can help by shopping online here and choosing The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria as your nonprofit. The Global Fund provides more than two thirds of all international malaria funding.

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International Volunteer Day: What Are YOU Doing on December 5th?

Posted on December 4th, 2007 by Corine in international relief, volunteerism 0 Comments

ivd_badge.jpgInternational Volunteer Day (IVD) is an internationally observed day of thanks to the thousands of volunteers around the world actively working to implement social change in whichever form they might choose to take. Adopted and designated by the United Nations in 1985, IVD offers an opportunity for volunteer organizations and individual volunteers to raise awareness for their efforts at local, national and international levels. Over the years, December 5 has been celebrated with rallies, parades, community volunteer projects, environmental awareness campaigns, free medical care and advocacy campaigns. It’s a shame really that volunteerism is only recognized on an international scale one-day per year, as encouraging more people to contribute to the welfare of society as a whole should be an on-going task, with daily reminders 365 days-a-year.

Simple things to do to raise awareness for IVD might include:

  • Conducting a ‘time-donation’ campaign in the workplace through which people pledge community service hours to specific projects
  • Building roads, community centers or playgrounds using both donated materials and volunteer labor
  • Helping companies identify corporate volunteer programs
  • Initiating a community recognition award or certificate program to recognize outstanding individual volunteers or organizations
  • Making a list of all the services which wouldn’t exist if it weren’t for volunteers and then go to the Points Of Light & Hands On Network website to find available volunteer opportunities nearby
  • Writing a blog and including photos from across the other side of the world to see this program at work in the field – that would be what I’m doing. I was in the Laotian city of Luang Prabang last week and saw the following banner as proof that this initiative is, in fact, active in relatively obscure areas.


More recently, the focus of IVD has shifted largely to monitoring and achieving the United Nations’ Millennium Development Goals established at the Millennium Summit in September 2000, wherein the largest gathering of world leaders in history adopted the UN Millennium Declaration, committing their nations to a new global partnership to reduce extreme poverty and setting out a series of time-bound targets, with a deadline of 2015. To manage the massive effort required in meeting these goals, United Nations Volunteers launched a global Internet volunteer resource network on December 5, 2002 that has since become the worldwide focal point for the IVD campaign. For information about volunteer activities across the globe, please visit

What Are The 8 Millennium Development Goals?

The Millennium Development Goals are a concise set of goals, numerical targets and quantifiable indicators to assess progress in development. The set includes 8 goals, 18 targets and over 40 indicators.

Click on each of the MDG icons to read how volunteers are contributing to achievement of the related goal.

1.gifMDG 1: Eradicate extreme poverty and hunger
More than a billion people still live on less than US$1 a day: sub-Saharan Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean, and parts of Europe and Central Asia are falling short of the poverty target.
Target for 2015:

  • Halve the proportion of people living on less than a dollar a day and those who suffer from hunger.

Read about the role of volunteers

2.gifMDG 2: Achieve universal primary education
As many as 113 million children do not attend school, but the target is within reach. India, for example, should have 95 percent of its children in school by 2005.
Target for 2015:

  • Ensure that all boys and girls complete primary school.

Read about the role of volunteers

3.gifMDG 3: Promote gender equality & empower women
Two-thirds of illiterates are women, and the rate of employment among women is two-thirds that of men. The proportion of seats in parliaments held by women is increasing, reaching about one third in Argentina, Mozambique and South Africa.
Targets for 2005 and 2015:

  • Eliminate gender disparities in primary and secondary education preferably by 2005, and at all levels by 2015.

Read about the role of volunteers

4.gifMDG 4: Reduce child mortality
Every year nearly 11 million young children die before their fifth birthday, mainly from preventable illnesses, but that number is down from 15 million in 1980.
Target for 2015:

  • Reduce by two thirds the mortality rate among children under five

Read about the role of volunteers

5.gifMDG 5: Improve maternal health
In the developing world, the risk of dying in childbirth is one in 48, but virtually all countries now have safe motherhood programs.
Target for 2015:

  • Reduce by three-quarters the ratio of women dying in childbirth.

Read about the role of volunteers

6.gifMDG 6: Combat HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases
Forty million people are living with HIV, including five million newly infected in 2001. Countries like Brazil, Senegal, Thailand and Uganda have shown that the spread of HIV can be stemmed.
Target for 2015:

  • Halt and begin to reverse the spread of HIV/AIDS and the incidence of malaria and other major diseases.

Read about the role of volunteers

7.gifMDG 7: Ensure environmental sustainability
More than one billion people lack access to safe drinking water and more than two billion lack sanitation. During the 1990s, however, nearly one billion people gained access to safe water and the same number to sanitation.
Targets for 2015:

  • Integrate the principles of sustainable development into country policies and programs and reverse the loss of environmental resources.
  • By 2015: reduce by half the proportion of people without access to safe drinking water.
  • By 2020: achieve significant improvement in the lives of at least 100 million slum dwellers.

Read about the role of volunteers

8.gifMDG 8: Develop a global partnership for development
Many developing countries spend more on debt service than on social services. New aid commitments made in the first half of 2002 could mean an additional $12 billion per year by 2006.
Targets for 2015:

  • Develop further an open trading and financial system that includes a commitment to good governance, development and poverty reduction – nationally and internationally
  • Address the least developed countries’ special needs, and the special needs of landlocked and small-island developing States
  • Deal comprehensively with developing countries’ debt problems
  • Develop decent and productive work for youth
  • In cooperation with pharmaceutical companies, provide access to affordable essential drugs in developing countries
  • In cooperation with the private sector, make available the benefits of new technologies – especially information and communications technologies.

Read about the role of volunteers

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