Pani re pani tera rang kaisa…
Welcome to 2012 and bucketfuls of dreams, aspirations and perhaps a few regrets as well. There will be more commentaries on each of these during this year. There is a song at the bottom but you have to read this first!
My use of the word ‘bucketfuls’ is intentional. A recent television advertisement by Water Aid, the UK based charity, affected me a great deal. Of course their work is commendable and the charity deserves every support that they can get. This blog is fiercely independent and does not claim to, or aim to, represent Water Aid or any of the two more charities that I am going to adopt for 2012. Why all this hassle? What is it about water that moves us most?
My mum used to believe that giving water to anyone who was thirsty was the most humane of all acts of ‘charitable’ giving. The whole aspect of charity is also debatable and I will return to this some other time or add a link here later. But offering water to the needy was seen as the greatest of all favours that mum could perform. Each of the words in italics suggests an assumption which will also be discussed when I return to charitable giving. My mum died 51 years ago and she taught us to offer water to any passing traveller and even our African neighbours from the adjoining ‘shambas’. This one is for you, mum.
The television advertisement for Water Aid featured an appeal for funds. The charity presents its credentials and seeks funding for improving access to clean water in some of the poorest parts of the world. The advertisement shows poor children drinking dirty and polluted water. The pictures are not for the squeamish but there is a view that charities do tend to use the bleakest and most upsetting pictures of people undergoing immense suffering when they try to raise funds. Most people have mixed views on how charities should present their case. However, as the prime focus of Water Aid is to create access to safe and clean drinking water for some of the neediest people in deprived areas of the world, one could hardly expect them to use a less convincing approach. The pictures and cases that they use are very moving and perhaps justly so. Now there, I have said it. Let us not be critical of the campaign and but more supportive of the need.
Just in case you are thinking of sending in the money, here is the link to their website: http://www.wateraid.org/uk
A visit to the site is highly recommended. I found that Water Aid has been working in Uganda. Please click this link to discover for yourself: http://www.wateraid.org/uk/what_we_do/where_we_work/uganda/
Water Aid’s work in Tanzania is shown by this link: http://www.wateraid.org/uk/what_we_do/where_we_work/tanzania/default.asp
So, would it be a good time to support Water Aid in the countries where some of us were born and bred? It is really up to you. My role is to provide the information. If you are interested please visit the main site at http://www.wateraid.org/uk
Water Aid is also supporting various projects in India and Pakistan. Please do not allow yourself to be distracted by news about India’s economic growth and how it is now one of the fastest emerging economies under the group of BRIC economies (Brazil, Russia, India and China). Some people refer to BRICS, the ‘S’ is for South Africa. Pakistan seems to have missed the economic miracle and for some it may be more deserving of help. Water Aid’s work in these countries is shown by the following links:
Remember this blog is not appointed by Water Aid and the writer is not an authorised fund raiser for this charity. The rest is up to you.
If you are still reading this you deserve a small treat. Here goes:
And, promise not to be too distracted by the wet saris….