Thursday, December 11, 2014


A grinning nerk in a fez wants to part you from your money
This Christmas, I shall be mostly supporting the tremendous charity Send A Cow. It's not just because they sent me this truly special Christmas jumper, which I shall treasure, but because they do important work in sustaining lives while everybody's attention has been drawn away to the cause du jour, that being the Ebola crisis in the west of Africa.

Also, I wear a fez now, because fezzes are cool.

Ebola is serious, and the cause deserves everybody's support, but it's not the whole story of  a massive continent of 54 countries and 1.1 billion people. For many in farming communities in sub-Saharan Africa, it's still very much a life-on-a-razor's-edge existence, and that's why help from the First World is still needed.

Now, I work with a lot of people from Africa, I've worked in Africa, and I've had my head pummeled by a nasty chap wielding a rifle butt in a certain country to which I have no wish to return, so I know to talk about "Africa" and "Africa's problems" can be patronising in the extreme. This especially when parts of it are doing very well, thank you very much, and they DO know it's Christmas. (Especially since Calendar Club is near enough universal these days).

But there are still developing areas that still need a nudge in the right direction, and Send A Cow - like Water Aid, another cause close to my heart, are doing the right thing for the right people. They're making lives better, and helping families become self-sufficient in food and facilities.

So. Send a farming family a donkey, a goat, a cow, or even a sofa (because, frankly, why not?) for Christmas, not because you've been guilt tripped or to make yourself feel smug about yourself, but because it's the right thing to do.

You don't need a grinning nerk in a fez and a truly special jumper to tell you that. Foreign aid matters - from governments, NGOs and individuals - because it's not about politics, it's about humanity.

Give to Send A Cow.


Paul said...

Ataturk banned the fez - Just like that. /grins and waves hands/

Kaptain_Von said...

I'm going to be unusually serious for a change. A few years ago my colleagues and I gave our boss (Hugh was a top bloke) a gift of a cow and a couple of goats sent to people who really needed them. He was suffering from a particularly aggressive cancer. It was a cause close to his heart. Sadly he passed away less than two months later but his wife told us that he thought that Christmas was the best ever because of what we had done. So, get your wallets out and get those cows headed to where they are needed and feel good at the same time. Hugh would be proud of you all...and Scary as well.