Five Bright Spots in a World of Turmoil

Five Things to Help You Think Differently: Issue 14

Posted: Aug 28, 2014

In an effort to help you stay up-to-date on the latest trends in communication, technology, and our dynamic world, we wanted to share some resources to help you think differently about the way your organization is communicating, sharing, and inspiring its constituents.

Maybe you’ve felt it, too. Every time I read the news, there’s something even more tragic and heartbreaking. From the conflict in Gaza to the crisis in the Ukraine, the civil war in Iraq to the Ebola outbreak in Africa, refugee children being turned away at our country’s borders and the near daily police shootings happening within them… it’s hard not to be overwhelmed. As a reminder of the bright spots amidst tragedy, this issue of Five Things highlights organizations working to help those affected by all the turmoil in today’s world.

1. Providing Direct Relief to Ebola Patients

According to Triple Pundit, the West African Ebola crisis has already taken over 1,000 lives in the most serious outbreak since the virus was identified in 1976. In order to continue fighting the disease, hospitals require knowledge and supplies. Fortunately, Direct Relief is working round-the-clock to contain the outbreak. The 66-year-old nonprofit is partnering with 16 corporations to bring necessary supplies to frontline heath providers.

2. Family First in Ferguson

Since the death of Michael Brown, an 18-year-old unarmed black man fatally shot by the police, the unrest in Ferguson, Missouri continues to escalate, with another police shooting taking place just days ago in St. Louis. Between peaceful and violent protests, the militarization of police, and citywide curfew, it has become increasingly difficult for the community to keep their children safe. To help, several organizations, including United Way, the Salvation Army, and the Red Cross, joined forces to gather supplies for local families and provide an afternoon of rest and relaxation for young families in Ferguson.

3. Choosing Children in the Gaza Strip

Over the last century, the conflict between Palestine and Israel has taken thousands of lives. The latest struggle between the two has already resulted in approximately 2,000 deaths, with one in five of which are children. Save the Children has turned its attention to this crisis, working to provide medical supplies, first-response treatment, and basic necessities to families in Gaza. On top of the care, Save the Children has joined with other organizations in calling for an immediate cease-fire. On its website, Save the Children states: “We demand a lasting ceasefire for children in #Gaza and #Israel. We don't choose sides. We #ChooseChildren.”

4. Responding to the Refugees

Since 2003, thousands have fled violence in central Iraq. However, this month’s gruesome attacks on religious minorities by ISIS have prompted a mass exodus of those fleeing for their lives. While the news seems to get grimmer every day, the International Rescue Committee (IRC) has geared up an emergency response to the situation. Though the IRC is focusing on water, sanitation, and hygiene for the displaced Iraqis, it has also supplied thousands with emergency kits and food.

5. KINDness in the Midst of Drug Wars

The surge of children seeking refuge in the U.S. from South and Central America is outstanding. Their stories are ones of violence, drugs, and fear. According to Mother Jones, there has been a 142% increase in unaccompanied minors apprehended by Border Patrol since 2011. Fortunately, KIND is working to represent these children. Kids in Need of Defense sees this as a refugee crisis, not the topic of an immigration debate. KIND, an alliance of law firms and other organizations, is working to provide pro bono legal services for these children, keeping them safe, and setting them up for success.