It made me think of Michelle Ruebke, an awesome woman and midwife who is currently in the Philippines. She's learning about Third World pregnancy and childbirth, disaster relief...and all kinds of things we don't even wanna hear about. This picture is of a mom named Happy and her 17 day-old baby, born 6 wks early at home without a skilled attendant. Thankfully she is exclusively breastfeeding or he probably wouldn't be here for this picture...Here's some excerpts from Michelle's blog:
"Another day of classes & hard stats - still studying childhood illnesses. Today was malaria - nasty stuff. 350-500 million cases each year - more than 80% in Sub-Saharan Africa. Causes more than 1 million deaths annually. 90% of those deaths are children less than 5 yrs old.
Then we looked at malnutrition. 200 million kids worldwide suffer from chronic malnutrition - meaning they are ALWAYS hungry. And the mental & physical damage that malnutrition causes in the 1st two years of life is IRREVERSIBLE."
"Anyway, our day was all diarrhea & pneumonia - not personally but educationally - thank goodness! Ian spent the day teaching us primary healthcare - starting with the 2 main causes of death in children under 5 yrs old. Did you know that EVERY single day, 32,000 children die of completely unnecessary causes? In just a few day's time, that equals more than all the American lives lost in the Vietnam War & all the wars since...think about that for a minute.
Now add this to your thought process: We have had the simple, inexpensive answers for these illnesses for more than 40 yrs but the number haven't changed. Why?
Ian summed it up well - these children are not dying of illnesses.
They are dying of apathy. There simply are not enough people who care enough to change it. Bottom line. No two ways around it. I am to blame.
But I will not continue in my apathy. Lord, forgive me & use me, somehow, some way, to bring about change."
What can you do? Well, I can give you contact info for the group, Mercy In Action that Michelle is with. Here's another way to do one thing...