I know some people disapprove of charities because they breed dependency. And if we give to charities, so another argument goes, governments may renege on their basic responsibility to use tax and aid revenues to take care of those who can’t take care of themselves. Personally, I don’t always trust governments to make sound decisions about “worthy causes” and I’m often uncomfortable when my contribution to the Exchequer is spent on causes I don’t approve of. Even if I trusted my government to look after the needy and allocate funds responsibly, I would still want to be able to express my philanthropy in my own way. It’s just part of being human.
Nevertheless, I’m not in the habit of using these pages to cajole people into parting with their hard-earned cash in support of this or that deserving cause. I’m making an exception for Malaria No More, a non-profit, non-governmental organisation that tackles malaria head on.
The disease is endemic in over a hundred countries, threatening 50% of the world’s population. It claims almost a million lives every year in Africa (one child every 30 seconds). Ironically, malaria is an easily preventable and treatable disease and a concerted humanitarian investment can make a huge impact on so many people’s lives and livelihoods. And it can be done quickly and cheaply. If you want to learn more about Malaria No More or make a donation, please visit the Malaria No More website.