How NOT to Do International Aid

50-cent-somalia matadornetwork

This blog, 7 Worst International Aid Ideas, is from a couple of years ago, but I just came across it recently. It will be a great read and reminder for all of us who want to help.

I am not against charity and donations for emergency help, but there is a lot to learn about the difference between relief, rehabilitation, and development.

The first example outlines three basic questions we should consider when giving to any kind of poverty-related cause:

  1. Is there a real need for this?
  2. Is there a more efficient (though not as easy) method?
  3. Are you undermining local, long-term efforts with your distant, short-term aid?

Keeping that in mind, here are the candidates for “the worst attempts at helping others since colonialism”:

  1. T-shirts for Africa
  2. TOMS Buy-One-Give-One
  3. Machine Gun Preachers
  4. Ransoming Children in Africa (Extortion)
  5. Donor Fund Restrictions
  6. Food Aid and Munitions Confusion
  7. Making Aid a Foreign Policy Tool

Be sure to read the full article.

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