Michael Straus wrote -
I recently spent ten days in Burma (aka Myanmar) visiting indigenous Hill Tribe communities. What I learned left me speechless (yes, me!) for several months. I was overwhelmed by the need, the dire circumstances, and a complicated reality that makes it potentially dangerous to discuss in too much detail.
There’s an opportunity to assist seven villages build infrastructure critical to their health and well-being, specifically toilets, clean water systems, an orphanage, and an agricultural / food security & nutrition project.
I’m working with a team of experts , both Burmese and westerners, who have an excellent track-record in implementing these types of projects, including securing local ‘buy-in’ from villagers who are true partners.
I’ve also secured the support of a very well-respected non-profit (www.100friends.org) to assist in funds collection, tax-deductions, etc. And I’m working with people who have deep knowledge of Burma, and how to get things done – no small challenge in the development universe, where funds are often simply pocketed.
If you’ve traveled in the developing world, you know that a few dollars goes a long ways. When I realized that $10,000 would be enough to fully implement projects in seven communities, supporting hundreds of families, I knew that I had to act.
There are lots of places to spend your money, both at home and abroad. Why is this cause worthy of your money? Obviously, only you can make that determination. But I will say that your contribution will make a real, substantive difference in the lives of people who are on the margins, who live hand-to-mouth, and who have very little access to assistance.
I’m actually setting the goal to $15,000 – one, to cover some of the transaction costs which would otherwise eat into the $10,000.
Also, I visited a Leper Colony which helps more than 500 children and their families. Their works is fully supported by charitable donations, and with the loving, selfless care of the nuns from the Holy Order of Marina Bambina (Italy). I’d like to buy them some rice.
I’ll report back to you with progress, with words and/or photos and videos.
How much am I asking? $5. $10. $100. Whatever makes sense for your personal finances. Whatever you're planning on giving, add 10%. I’ve given about $350 myself so far, some of which has been used for basic medical supplies.
With warmest regards and deep gratitude,