January 31, 2011

The Dilemma of Aid: Karamoja on BBC

If you have the time, heck, even if you DON'T have the time, this is an interesting article about Karamoja and the dilemma of aid.

In Karamoja, people were generally amused that I knew EXACTLY how old I was. That was more of a thing for town's people, the educated, or the young (under 15) who were in school.

So at first they giggled because I was in my late 20's and had no baby. They still consider me a girl "apese" because there's no baby, so obviously Jacob and I are literally... WAITING.

But then when I would say my birth year, I was generally met with a very pregnant pause...


While Karamoja's big drought and famine was worst in 1980 and '81 (someone please correct me if I'm wrong), those born in '79 typically.. well... died. (In Kaabong district at least).

So my year of birth was typically met with silence and occasionally the equivalent of an "Oh crap", or "Wow".

And it was always a fun conversation ENDER or a segue to discuss the famine.

Watching this video I was reminded so much of this as they began to cut their sleeping hides to eat. Our dear friends confided in us and told us very sad stories of loss during that time, and how everything that could walk would get eaten and the hides they slept on for months would be boiled and eaten just to fill their stomachs.

It's such a complicated and tricky matter... But one we shouldn't ignore or side step because it's "far away" or so "complicated".


I do not have the answers, nor do I pretend to. But we must still consider...


Brandon and April said...

I feel so helpless. I don't even know where to begin. What can we do? How do we do it?
My heart breaks and tears run down my cheeks as I see kids eating goat hide...while I just ate a stupid milky way for dessert.

Thanks for the video. I'm going to link to it from my fb page. :)

Mike and Emily said...

What a reminder to consider...Just horrific and "centering". Thanks for sharing and reminding us.

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