About eight years ago, I became a member of ONE. ONE is a grassroots advocacy and campaigning organization that fights extreme poverty and preventable disease, particularly in Africa. At the time I had three young children at home. Through my involvement with ONE, I began to learn about what life is like for moms and families in Africa who struggle against preventable disease and extreme poverty. These realities broke my heart and I soon found myself getting involved.
Here are some things I have learned which are effective for real change for moms and families in the developing world. I may still find myself driving car pool, supervising homework, and stuck doing mountains of laundry; but these simple things—when we do them together—add up to make a difference.
- Become a member of ONE. By becoming a member of ONE, you are immediately in the conversation, receiving e-mail alerts, blogs, and “What We’re Reading” lists. ONE does the sifting of information and delivers articles and points of action in manageable pieces for the everyday mom.
- Read books, blogs, and articles to expand your understanding of extreme poverty and global disease and how to combat them effectively. Visit www.globalsoccermom.com.
- Support small indigenous projects like World Bicycle Relief or Growers First. Find organizations run by the people for the people. Give of your resources and your time.
- Join Facebook “causes” pages of your favorite organizations and follow them on Twitter. In this age of online social networks, we have unprecedented ways to receive and share information quickly and effectively.
- Participate in a local HIV/AIDS walk/run, or any race or marathon to raise money for your favorite cause.
- Learn who your Congressional representatives are and write letters to them expressing your concerns. Did you know your representatives keep local office hours and you can make appointments to talk to them in person about what is important to you?
- Get involved locally with issues of poverty and HIV/AIDS. Reach out to the HIV/AIDS community around you and encourage your church to do the same.
- Buy (RED) products, where proceeds go to support the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB, and Malaria. (RED) products can be found at places like Starbucks, Apple, Dell, Converse, Hallmark, American Express, and Gap.
- Get involved with World Vision and its Women of Vision programs. Sponsor an at-risk girl, and she will get an education through twelfth grade. The single best way to get a nation out of poverty is to educate its girls. Learn how World Vision fights to stop gender-based violence and how it fights for gender equality with a goal of empowering both men and women in areas ravaged by poverty and disease.
- One last thing you can do? Read Global Soccer Mom with a group of friends and work through the discussion questions at the back. Learn together how to make a real difference in our world!
Want to win a copy of Global Soccer Mom and get started changing the world? We have five copies of the book to share with our ParentLife Online readers. To enter, tell us in the comments: which of the above options most appeals to you and why?
Soccer mom photo used with permission of Flickr Creative Commons. Click on photo for source.
Shayne Moore was raised in Wheaton, IL. After graduating from Wheaton College Shayne moved to Los Angeles during the riots to teach school in the inner city. After returning home Shayne slowly completed a Master of Arts in Theology while her children were babies. Shayne still lives in Wheaton with her husband John and three children, JD (15), Greta (12), and Thomas (9), spending most of her days driving carpool and doing mountains of laundry.
Moore is an author, blogger, speaker, mama of three, and outspoken advocate in the fight against extreme poverty and Global AIDS. Shayne is one of the original members of the ONE Campaign.
Winners will be picked June 15, 2011. One comment person person, please. USA only. LifeWay employees are not eligible to win.