Friday, October 24, 2008

Nuru Launches New Website!!!

Josephine, originally uploaded by Nuru International.
Her name is Josephine. She lives in rural Kenya in a tiny hut made of straw, mud and dung. She has 5 children; 3 are sick with malaria. The youngest died last year on Josephine’s back as she frantically travelled 30 kilometers to the nearest clinic for medicine that would have saved his life.

Josephine walks 5 hours each day to get water, and the water sometimes makes her and her children sick. She doesn’t have access to fertilizer and good seed to grow crops to feed her family, so she must hire herself out to provide them their daily meal of porridge. There’s no school for her children to attend, and she wouldn’t be able to afford the small fees for books and uniforms even if there was. Her husband died last year of AIDS and she is most likely infected, however, she doesn’t want to be tested because there’s no medicine available, and the uninformed superstitions of the community regarding HIV/AIDS would label her and her children as outcasts.

Josephine is trapped in the cycle of extreme poverty. She has no choices. It’s not her fault. Neither she nor her children did anything to deserve this. Yet one in six people in our world today are like Josephine, living without hope.

Insert Nuru.
Fast-forward 5 years.

Josephine lives just a few minutes from a deep well that provides clean drinking water for her entire family. There is a simple medical clinic down the road with basic supplies and competent staff who educate the community about the causes of HIV/AIDS, malaria, and typhoid, and provide antiretroviral medication (ARVs) to keep Josephine well. She and her neighbors have access to high quality seed, fertilizer, and agricultural know-how that enable them to increase their crop yields by 100%. This bounty allows them to not only feed themselves but also earn a small income to pay school fees for their children and invest in next year’s crop.

Josephine’s children attend the primary and secondary school where they receive a sound education from qualified teachers. As the community continues to prosper, a village bank is established to provide micro-loans and training to promising entrepreneurs, helping them develop a business plan and learn fundamental skills. The small fees the community pays for its basic services are re-invested to spur further development and create sustainable growth, allowing the community to lift itself out of extreme poverty.

This is innovation in action.
This is holistic and sustainable development.
This is a dozen NGOs and thousands of grassroots volunteers working alongside the poor to break the cycle of extreme poverty.
This is NGO 2.0.
This is Nuru.

To find out more about Nuru, and check out the new site click here.

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