Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Children dying...

6 years 23 days 5 hours 10 minutes and 40 seconds left until 2015. The year in which we hope the Millennium Development Goals will be met. One of those goals is to reduce child mortality by two thirds. Unfortunately for many children, this will be too late. So many children are in dire need of health TODAY.

Earlier this afternoon, I found out that while my friend was on the ferry to Freetown yesterday he was approached by a woman who asked him for money. She said that her three-year-old child was very sick. Not knowing exactly what the mother wanted to do with money, my friend suggested she take the child to a doctor, offering to pay for the transport costs. After all, health care is supposedly free for children under five in Sierra Leone now. However, their encounter was cut short and ended dramatically with the child dying right there on the ferry in front of my friend’s eyes. Tragic.

This story is one of many. In 2007, 9.2 million children died before age five. Half of the world’s under-five deaths occurred in Africa, which remains the most difficult place in the world for a child to survive until age five. Did you know that a child born in a developing country is over 13 times more likely to die within the first five years of life than a child born in an industrialized country?

I am again reminded of the horrific statistics of child mortality around the world. And remembered the Millennium Development Goals. How great it would be if this goal could really be reached in 6 years time. And how much I desire to play some kind of a role in helping these children...

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~ Act Justly. Love Mercy. Walk Humbly. micah 6:8 ~