I am writing now to you to let you know that I recently started working for the Irish charity Self Help Africa (Visit www.selfhelpafrica.org to find out more).
For over 25 years Self Help Africa has been working to alleviate poverty and hunger amongst some of the poorest people on earth. It is challenging work, but it is rewarding to know that much progress has been made in Africa in the past decade.
This issues have come into sharp focus with the famine and drought in East Africa. Although Self Help Africa is not directly involved in this emergency, the charity does work to try to ensure that situations like this do not happen in the first place – by providing farming communities with good quality seed, supporting irrigation, and by a whole host of other measures that can give people some protection from the kinds of problems they are facing in parts of East Africa today.
As the name suggests, Self Help believes that the solution to one of the biggest challenges faced by Africa is in the hands of the people themselves. Provide African farmers with better access to seeds, with training and with the knowledge that will make them better farmers and you will solve a problem that we have been wrestling with for the best part of half a century. You will read in the enclosed newsletter about the work that we are currently doing with women in Africa. In many respects women are the engine of development. They work in the fields, take care of the young and the old, prepare food, provide clean water, and do much, much more.
One example of how we are helping is by supporting a women’s savings and credit programme that has provided small loans to over 32,000 (mainly women) members in Ethiopia, to allow them to set up small businesses and earn a living.
I hope that you will enjoy reading about my new organisation – and will consider lending me your support if I ‘come calling’ on you in the future. Very small amounts can go a long way in Africa – so every little bit of help that you can give for the work of Self Help will always be deeply appreciated. Absolutley no hassle if you are not in a position to help out you have been more than helpful and generous to my endeavours in the past. Thanks again for everything.
With best wishes,