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Health -- Arwen Barr

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Goal: $500

$350 raised so far,   $150 to go!

Welcome to my Global Solidarity Challenge 2016 page, thanks for stopping by!

I am super excited to be participating for the first time ever in VIDEA's Global Solidarity Challenge (GSC) on Team Health!  GSC is an opportunity to raise funds to support VIDEA (an organisation very close to my heart!) in the incredible work they are doing while raising awareness about health inequalities and social justice issues that are impacting the lives of millions of people around the world.

I am looking for support in reaching my fundraising goal of $500, and every little bit helps to get there! By supporting me you are supporting strong human rights and gender based development programming that VIDEA delivers in Canada and East and Southern Africa. 

Not only has VIDEA given me so much through my recent internship experience, but I believe so strongly in the work that they are doing and the way that they are doing it. To learn more about VIDEA and the projects and partnerships you will be supporting visit: www.videa.ca.

But of course that's not the only way you can show support…why not join the challenge?! Check out these great challenge ideas (some of my favourites include: eat only one type of staple food for the week, walk to a public water source to collect your water, each day read 7 pieces of writing by women around the world) or better yet, come up with your own! You can do your challenge for a week, a day, whatever suits you. Thinking of joining? Give me a shout, I'd love to hear about it!

My personal challenge for GSC 2016:

I will be keeping my eyes on the sky.
I will be letting the weather decide how often I will be eating.  For the next 7 days, as long as the sun is shining, I will be eating one meal a day. If it rains, and only if it rains, I will indulge in a second meal that day.

I've just returned from a 6-month internship placement living with a community in rural Uganda surrounded by friends and neighbours who support the survival and well-being of themselves and their families through subsistence farming. As a subsistence farmer, life is intimately linked to the land and to the environment. I watched friends work harder than I have ever seen anyone work to prepare, plant, and nurture crops to ensure food for their families. Even with all this hard work, the food they will get from these crops largely depends on factors outside of their control.

When it rains, people rejoice. When it is dry, people are wondering how their family will be eating in the coming weeks and months.

During this challenge I will also be reflecting on and remaining conscious of the impact I have on my environment. Climate change is a problem exacerbated largely by the actions of those of us living in the minority world (more developed nations) and yet the ones who feel the detrimental effects of climate change most acutely are often those living in the majority world (less developed nations) who depend on the land for their well-being and survival.

This year regions in Eastern and Southern Africa have experienced severe droughts that have led to a massive food crisis and famine and are having devastating effects for the people living in these regions. (These droughts are caused by El Nino, an unusual weather pattern associated with the irregular warming of oceans along the equatorial Pacific.)

This week I stand in solidarity with those who depend on the land and the environment for survival and those most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change.

Thank you for your support and thank you for reading!

In solidarity,

Arwen

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