World Refugee Day June 20, 2007

See Anderson Cooper’s 360 show tonight

Today’s date: Wednesday, 20 June 2007

UNHCR Goodwill Ambassador Angelina Jolie sits beside an Afghan boy in the refugee camp of Katcha Ghari on the edge of the Pakistan city of Peshawar. © UNHCR/J.Redden

“Top Story: World Refugee Day: Challenges of the 21st Century
UNHCR focuses attention today on the plight of millions of refugees and displaced people around the world. The future is likely to see more people on the move and the international community must face the challenge of understanding the new displacement environment.”

Angelina Jolie Announces Global Action for Children

My favorite topic, finding ways to help children.

This morning I came across an article on People Magazine Online regarding Angelina Jolie’s “call to Washington”.

The part that grabbed my attention was as follows:

The actress, 31, appeared at a press conference in Washington, D.C., on Thursday to announce the launch of Global Action for Children, a group that raises money for orphans in developing countries.”

I jumped over to the site, and my eye was immediately grabbed by a well designed tagline: “Take Action: Advocate for Children.”

I realize there is a lot of back and forth as to who Angelina Jolie is or isn’t; yet, I find that is not the point. I find the endeavor to use whatever one can to help children is what matters in the end.

In taking my first look at this site, I noted the organization appeared to have been established in 1993. Maybe I heard of it, maybe I didn’t. I know that today it caught my eye because normally headlines with Angelina Jolie have something to do with children and I know on some level I will be interested. So, not only did I read about one more person not required to help others who is doing so anyway, I also discovered a website where it appears that ordinary mortals can reach out and help the children of the world.

Yes. How simply put on the website: “Advocate for Children”.

I for one am going to read more on this site and understand the goal a bit better and how I can help. I wanted to share it with all of you because I think we can agree, there is no reason in the world not to help children.

I often wonder at the one class of human beings that are simply too young to ascribe fault to or cast judgment upon that suffer because we either simply don’t know what to do or we don’t care.

Class and race and gender distinctions to name a few, are they our reasons for not helping children without family? It reminds me of the old television programs where an astronaut would be disconnected from a spaceship, floating presumably for eternity, and I wanted to scream because I couldn’t get in the t.v. to reconnect him to the Mothership. Yes, perhaps I was disturbed as a child. No matter. I do now know as an adult that the young are discriminated against and somehow seen as less than a whole human being.

The title of the website makes me pause to think: “Global”. Going beyond borders or not seeing borders to begin with? Many of us have been raised, right, wrong or indifferently, into naturally seeing borders. I don’t believe such short-sightedness exists from birth. I think of two of my children whose sitter for a period of time, actually more than one sitter over a period of time, was of another nationality, another culture, and yes, had different color skin than my family.

My kids never commented on it. It was only years later that they asked where the sitters were from due to a different language pattern or accent than we have and yes, because at some point, around Kindergarten, my children began to notice or take note of, different skin color.

I use that as a reference point to emphasize that I don’t believe children are born and naturally grow to see differences. The differences we think are important, justified or ones that have been allowed to have arisen, are false teachings and not the natural route of the heart. These teachings are impositions upon our natural state.

So when I consider, again, the name: “Global Action for Children”, as an adult, I first see breaking through the self-imposed barriers, and then I pause, and in my mind, spin around and see no barriers at all, simply beautiful children who deserve anyone and everyone to help them.

Does that mean we ignore “our own”? The ones within our nation, our states, our counties, our towns, our school district, our socio-economic or faith based divisions?


But we don’t cease helping “others” because we falsely believe there should be distinction between children. And we pray for a day when the phrases “our own” and “others” do not exist.

Can there be a concern that we will help so many abroad that children beneath our feet or located within a one mile radius will be neglected?



why must we choose?

Haven’t we grown up just enough to find a way to help all children?

The children are our keepers’ of tomorrow, what do we choose to teach them now?