These past few days I've been in Washington D. C., giving voice to those living in extreme poverty, families in a daily struggle for survival, children growing up malnourished with no hope of reaching their full potential, as well as those whose lives are impacted by preventable and treatable disease.
Scrapbooking is what I do in my "spare" time.
This is what I do in my more valuable time.
Here are some of the incredible people who presented at the ONE Summit, men and women who are making a positive impact on our world:
Florence Ngobeni-Allen and Cristina Pena, spoke on behalf of the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation, where they are fighting for an HIV/AIDS-free generation of children. Florence lost her first child to the disease. She has since given birth to two healthy HIV-free children due to advancements in medicine preventing mother-to-child transmission of HIV. Twenty-five years ago, Cristina, was one of only 20 children in the Los Angeles area diagnosed with the disease. She's still fighting the fight.
"The next famine will not be prevented by food aid" says Roger Thurow, hunger activist and author of Enough: Why the Poorest Starve in an Age of Plenty and the soon to be released The Last Hunger Season. Smart, cost-effective investments in agricultural development are the key to preventing hunger, driving economic growth, and putting people as well as countries on the path to sustainability. Check out the trailer for the documentary that will accompany his book. Inspiring. We have 401Ks. They have 401Cows. Seriously!
"Poverty anywhere is an affront to people everywhere." After 20 years as a journalist in Africa, Gayle Smith is a Special Assistant to the President and Senior Director at the National Security Council. She consults for a wide range of NGOs, foundations, and governmental organizations.
South African Ambassador to the U. S., his Excellency Ebrahim Rasool inspired us all with his wisdom on advocacy. One of the greatest lessons from the apartheid movement-sing! Carry your burdens lightly!
Here are three of the more than 150 volunteer activists who were at the 2012 ONE Summit in D. C.
Katie and I, fresh and optimistic, before our first meeting at Senator Landrieu's office.
Cedric Richmond has some beautiful New Orleans flavored artwork in his office!
Yes, as we were walking down the halls from one meeting to the next, my eyes were constantly drawn to the decor in the offices of the members of Congress. Some were like mini-museums!
A beautiful rotunda in one of the buildings.
And I'll leave you with this...the gas prices in D. C.! Quite different from home. Thankfully, they have a very clean and efficient metro system!
Please get involved. Go to ONE.org and lend your voice for those living in extreme poverty.