Do You Think That The General Situation Of The Poorer Half Of The World's Population Has Improved Or Worsened In The Last 25 Years?

1070 words - 4 pages

Not many people realize that more than half of the world's population is undernourished or malnourished and one in every three of them lives in an abject poverty. These facts are the ones that fund-raising agencies or news media often glorify for obvious reasons. Compassion, feeling of guilt makes people donate money thus allowing organizations like Action Aid to operate. With the news about mass education, reduction in population and fund-raising organizations, it seems the situation in the Third World countries improves, however, there are claims these facts are biased and serve to manipulate perceptions of the public."The cumulative effect of the way in which the developing worldis portrayed by charitable organizations and the media is grosslymisleading. And it results in deeply held public misconceptionsthat are ultimately damaging to the understanding they seekto promote." ('The Independent' 16 May 1993)It is true that most people learn about the Third World from news programs. As it is known, television has never presented the norms of our societies. Its 'news' are always exceptional facts that happened somewhere in the world and are merely 'blown out of proportions'. The same problem is with fund-raising agencies, which stress the plight, the misery, the need of the developing world. Of course, it raises money but at the same time distorts people's perceptions. Numerous reports of tragedies and appeals for donations leave the impression that the poor world is just a parched land with starving to death children. Another fact that is mostly exaggerated is the role of aid in poor worlds. People are 'fed' the numbers representing impossible amounts of money donated to poor countries. There are charity concerts, fund-raising on a global scale and many people of show business who are involved in these actions. Nonetheless, there is no news about the debts that the Third World countries are in."The public in the industrialized world donated roughly half a billion dollars in one 12-month period- one of the greatest fund-raising responses of all time. At the same time, the industrialized world's governments gave $2bn in extra emergency aid to Africa. However, almost three times that sum was paid to the industrialized world by Africa in debt and interest payments." ('The Independent' 16 May 1993)Some people say it is hard to imagine what the conditions are like in the Third World and unless one goes there, they will never know. That is why many people of a high social status having traveled to poor countries, join different charity organizations and are willing to donate their money for the good of destitute peoples. Action Aid is one of these charities whose philosophy says that the cycle of poverty cannot be broken by helping a few. Instead, communities are the ones to be helped since only then the significant improvements can be made. Among Action Aid's concerns are provision of water, health care and education.Mass education, as it is referred...

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