Thursday, June 24, 2010

The G8/G20 offers the opportunity to really make a difference

I happen to live and work in downtown Toronto, and it is impossible not to be completely aware of the G20 summit this weekend. The city is already shut down about 1 block from our apartment and during my 1.7km walk to work I now walk by police offers on every corner, am aware of snipers on the top of office buildings and have already passed through 2 protests this past week. This activity is sure to only magnify over the next few days. So what is this summit all about? Leaders from the G20 countries will be discussing issues related to the global economy and other urgent issues that are facing the world.

Two years ago, I had the opportunity to travel to the DR with a major Canadian non-profit organization to see the work they are doing in communities first hand. It changed my life. I met beautiful children who I will never forget and I vowed that I would always do what I could, even if it meant helping just one child.
What does that have to do with the G8 and G20 summit? I'm so glad you asked...

Even now, in 2010, more than 8 million infants and children die from preventable/treatable causes - that's 3 children every second. It is a staggering number, and in the developed world i believe that we could be doing more. Without getting too political, I want to share with you a simple way that you can make a difference. As we head into the G20 summit, Save the Children Canada, an international relief and development organization who's focus is on fighting for children's rights, is running their Every One Campaign. Their goal is to insure this issue is on the agenda during this weekends discussions and that governments from around the world come together with the purpose of giving every child a real chance at life.
In the year 2000, the world's countries agreed to the United Nations Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) – one of which was to reduce the under-five mortality rate by two thirds by 2015. Save the Children's EVERY ONE campaign serves to remind the world's leaders to honour their commitment to achieve this goal. They are making progress, but as you can see from the statistic above there is still a lot to be done.

By doing something as simple as signing a petition, you can join the rattle cry and tell our world leaders that this issue is important. I thank you so much for taking the time to read this post, and for hopefully taking action. My baby girl is fortunate that she will be born in Canada, but other mother's around the globe will face much more uncertainty as they bring their children into the world. It is on their behalf, that I am taking action.

Below is a photo of me in the DR two years ago, and one amazing little girl I had the privilege of getting to know.

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