Rose early this morning as I didn’t want to miss out on any of the action here in New York!
The main event kicked off this morning with UN Secretary General, Ban Ki-Moonreminding leaders of the promises that have been made to the world’s poorest. In 2000, when the 8 goals for tackling poverty (the MDGs) were agreed, Prime Ministers and Presidents said that they would “spare no effort to free our fellow men, women and children from the abject and dehumanizing conditions of extreme poverty”. A BIG promise which requires a BIG response. With some way to go to achieve the MDGs, our politicians need to do everything they possibly could to increase access to things like water, sanitation, health and education. Ten years on we still have a long way to go…
But it’s not just politicians that can make a difference. I’ve been in a meeting today to talk about what churches and other faith-based organisations can do to transform communities and tackle poverty. There were fellow-badgers there from Sierra Leone, Uganda, Haiti, South Korea – and yours truly representing the UK! I heard that in some developing countries, churches are providing the majority of health services and was wondering why we never hear about this if this is the case!!!
One of the buzz words for today was ACCOUNTABILITY – another big word and everyone seemed to agree it was important. Churches don’t just run schools and hospitals but they can also make sure that Governments stick to their promises on the MDGs. Through campaigning and advocacy, churches around the world can call for the poorest to be prioritised and for money to be spent wisely. By joining together with our brother and sister-badgers, we can have a bigger impact on poverty!