HuffPost Canada closed in 2021 and this site is maintained as an online archive. If you have questions or concerns, please check our FAQ or contact support@huffpost.com.

ending child poverty

Already in the grips of an impending famine, fragile Somalia can't handle much more. But while hunger rates grab news headlines, there is a much quieter killer at work: tuberculosis. TB is one of the top ten causes of death globally, and Somalia is estimated to have one of the highest incidence rates in the world. Meanwhile, here in Canada, it's International Development Week. It's a chance to highlight and celebrate all the good work Canada has done globally. I find this difficult.
Each year around this time, I find myself frustrated that the world still needs to observe Universal Children's Day on November 20th. Don't get me wrong, kids are worth celebrating. As someone who has dedicated my life to serving children, I believe that at my core.
October 17 is the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty. It is to recognize all children, in rich countries as well as in poor, who are left behind because their families lack income and their societies fail to reach them with the services they need. It's time to end child poverty in Canada. It's entirely possible and there are promising steps.
It is historic -- the benefit provides targeted support to low and moderate income families across Canada. According to the minister of families, children and social development, it is projected to slash child poverty rates in this country by a record 40 per cent.
Children under five are more at risk -- they account for 70 per cent of all malaria deaths. More than 300,000 children died last year from an illness that's preventable with things as simple as clean water sources. Let's make sure that kids don't have to fight off a disease that racks their bodies with fever, pain and nausea. Let's stop malaria before it bites.
For me, Giving Tuesday isn't a stand-alone event. It marks the beginning of my holiday giving, and fits right in with the spirit of the coming season, alongside sleigh bells, choirs, or the laughter of children as they make their annual wish lists.
There's nothing I admire more than a couple with an enduring love and a commitment to giving back. Such is the case of John and Olga Gattinger. They are in their 90s and are soon to celebrate their 70th wedding anniversary! Perhaps the best part of the story, like most, is the journey.
On Universal Children's Day, I challenge you to look at the canvas of the world's children, and see where the holes are. Whether it's a refugee child, a child in need of sponsorship, or the child who lives next door -- how might you be important in that life?
Friday is World Food Day, the perfect day to join thousands of people around the world by treating yourself (and others), to the most expensive and lavish feast you can afford. You deserve it! And here's the best part: you can satisfy that craving -- and be a humanitarian hero at the same time, helping some of the most vulnerable people on the planet.
We Millennials have grown up. We've gone from passionate teens to professionals, flexing our leadership muscles in the workplace. We still carry the idealism of our younger years, but, with our new roles as movers and shakers, the stakes for our involvement are much higher. This is our world now -- and we need to be ready to help take charge. This week in New York City, the United Nations will adopt the new Sustainable Development Goals, a set of goals and targets designed to end extreme poverty over the next 15 years. They're universal, and so are expected to guide the policies and practices of all countries, not just the developing ones. As a Millennial, I'm keeping a watch on what our governments and organizations do, and looking for ways to help.
I went to law school to equip myself with the tools to make a difference in the world -- something that many of us want for our lives. Some people do it through teaching, others by volunteering, and others by the way they run their businesses. I do it through practicing law.
According to the World Health Organization, exclusive breastfeeding is the optimal way of feeding babies for the first six months of their lives. Breast milk is packed with nutrients that a newborn needs to grow strong and healthy, and fight off illness and infection. In regions where water sources are often contaminated and medical clinics are few and far between, nothing beats breastfeeding. Yet women giving birth in one of the world's poorest regions must often overcome immense obstacles to breastfeed.
I've been lucky to have a fulfilling marriage, a job that I love and a life filled with meaning. But like anyone, I'm familiar with the stretches of hopelessness that can come when life gets to be too much -- or not nearly enough. I began sponsoring Alejandro in Bolivia when he was just five, sure that I'd be improving his life. What took me completely off-guard was the way that he's lifted mine.
Working with World Vision, I know that too much chocolate available in our stores comes at the heartbreaking expense of some 2 million children worldwide. Here are some of the things I've done this year, to keep the fun in Valentine's Day and honour those I love, while caring for children around the world:
It's true that most governments in developing countries provide education for children. And there's no doubt that millions of children overseas are intelligent, hard-working and yearning to succeed. But let's consider the many challenges which children in the world's poorest regions face when trying to attend school.
Today's products come to you courtesy of a whole string of contractors and subcontractors, each with different employment and safety standards. Moving down the supply chain, you often find children forced to work in brutal, dangerous conditions for very little pay. Hours are so long that many have no chance to continue in school, relegating them to lifetimes of low-paid labour.
Because I work for the aid and develpment agency World Vision, we've always had the World Vision Gift Catalogue around the house. You might have seen it? You choose a specific gift for a family in a poor community overseas, and give it in honour of someone you love or admire.
To what extent might child poverty hamper our collective future? This question is on my mind because earlier this month, the Conference Board of Canada put out a report card that gave Canada a very poor ranking on child poverty.