Saturday, January 26, 2008

Millennium Development Goal primer

In preparation for the 2008 push for more and better poverty-focused development assistance, let's go back to some basics. What do we want? MDG's!
When do we want them? Now!, I mean...2015!

What are the MDG's?
The eight Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) – which range from halving extreme poverty to halting the spread of HIV/AIDS and providing universal primary education, all by the target date of 2015 – form a blueprint agreed to by all the world’s countries and all the world’s leading development institutions. They have galvanized unprecedented efforts to meet the needs of the world’s poorest. They are as follows:
Goal 1: Eradicate extreme poverty and hunger
Goal 2: Achieve universal primary education
Goal 3: Promote gender equality and empower women
Goal 4: Reduce child mortality
Goal 5: Improve maternal health
Goal 6: Combat HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases
Goal 7: Ensure environmental sustainability
Goal 8: Develop a Global Partnership for Development

So, what's it gonna take? Ask the UN Secretary-General....
"We will have time to reach the Millennium Development Goals – worldwide and in most, or even all, individual countries – but only if we break with business as usual. We cannot win overnight. Success will require sustained action across the entire decade between now and the deadline. It takes time to train the teachers, nurses and engineers; to build the roads, schools and hospitals; to grow the small and large businesses able to create the jobs and income needed. So we must start now. And we must more than double global development assistance over the next few years. Nothing less will help to achieve
the Goals."

This info is from

Friday, January 25, 2008

Advocate for the Hungry (from

This is from another blogger at another blog called "Inspired to Action" at
I'm jealous of her very simple blog address :) I post this because it's not just me saying "write to Congress!"
Advocate for the Hungry
Posted by Laura
Have you ever written letters to your elected officials? I encourage my students to do so all the time, because a democracy doesn’t function well if voters don’t express their views to those who govern on our behalf. As an intern in a Senate office, I learned that those letters do make a difference: office staff keep a tally of what issues are important to constituents, and if they receive many letters and calls about a particular issue, you can bet the Representative or Senator will take note.
In an effort to influence elected officials to do more to help those in need, Bread for the World, a Christian organization that advocates for poverty-focused development assistance, is gearing up for its 2008 Offering of Letters campaign. This year’s campaign focuses on getting Congress to approve increased funding to meet the Millennium Development Goals, an international initiative to improve life for the world’s poorest people by providing universal education, reducing child mortality rates, combating disease, and other key steps to address the root causes of poverty.
Bread for the World helps faith communities and other groups organize letter-writing events to help get this legislation passed. Next month I’ll be attending a workshop to learn how to organize an Offering of Letters at my church and on campus and how to be a better advocate for the poor. Will you join me? Consider attending a training workshop or reading up on how to organize an Offering of Letters, or join Bread for the World’s Facebook group to learn more. Most importantly, write your elected officials and tell them that you care about helping those in need.
Take Action Today:
Organize a letter-writing campaign at your church or community group to influence elected officials to help those in need.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Action for IL residents: Call-in to Obama

From Bread for the World...
Although we were not able to win the type of commodity reform that we wanted this time around, the Senate's farm bill does make significant new investments to anti-hunger programs like Food Stamps. HOWEVER, we have discovered that these new investments in the Food Stamp Program are not secure and will be taken away in 5 years unless we act. This represents a false promise to millions of vulnerable Americans who will see their benefits expand in 2008, only to have the increase taken away five years later.

MESSAGE: Please call Senator Obama by 5:00 pm Eastern time on Friday, January 25, at 1-800-826-3688. Ask the Senator to sign the dear colleague letter on farm bill nutrition funding that Senators Robert Casey (D-PA) and Richard Durbin (D-IL) are currently circulating. The letter urges leaders of the House and Senate Agriculture Committees to make sure the farm bill conference report includes permanent funding for nutrition programs at the higher Senate-passed levels. Click here to let us know you called.

[Note: This toll-free number will connect you to the Capitol switchboard, where you will ask to be connected to your senator’s office in order to leave your message.]

Calls completed by: 5 pm Friday, January 25.