Friday, February 23, 2018

Feel Good Friday - Oxfam

When searching for an organization to profile for today's Feel Good Friday, this slogan for Oxfam caught my eye: "the power of people against poverty". I was inspired to learn more about them and now you will too.

As summarized on their website, "Oxfam is a global organization working to end the injustice of poverty. We help people build better futures for themselves, hold the powerful accountable, and save lives in disasters. Our mission is to tackle the root causes of poverty and create lasting solutions."

Originally known as the Oxford Committee for Famine Relief, Oxfam started in 1942 when a group of Quaker intellectuals, social activists and Oxford academics joined forces to respond to the plight of refugees in Greece. They continued to provide aid to people in Europe before shifting their focus to developing nations. Oxfam America was founded by volunteers 28 years later in response to the humanitarian crisis created by the fight for independence in Bangladesh.

Collectively, Oxfam now works in 90 countries around the globe. To achieve their vision of "a just world without poverty" their efforts are focused in four areas:
  • saving lives
  • programs to overcome poverty and injustice
  • campaigning for social justice
  • public education
Examples of specific programs include working to end violence against women in Mozambique, supporting the peace process in Colombia, and inviting refugees to spend a day sharing their stories in Trump's childhood home. Last year over 22 million people benefitted from Oxfam programs.

You can find more information by checking out the list, "Top 10 things you need to know about Oxfam". Some statements that inspired me:
  • We believe that fighting poverty is about fighting injustice.
  • The projects we fund are community driven.
  • We help people learn about their basic rights and how to defend them.
If you'd like to get involved but don't know where to start, there's a toolkit you can download. It lists actions you can take on your own, such as skipping a meal in solidarity with people who are hungry and donating the cost of that meal to Oxfam. There are also plenty of ideas for group fundraisers.

Finally, you can always show your support for Oxfam with the usual suspects - donate, shop, volunteer, like the Facebook page and follow them on Twitter @OxfamAmerica.

No comments: