Sunday, December 2, 2012

Some thoughts on African aid and development

I came across both of these videos last week and they made me happy.  I think the second one provides an alternative to the stereotypes and cliches the first one critiques. 

From the website:
"Imagine if every person in Africa saw the “Africa for Norway” video and this was the only information they ever got about Norway. What would they think about Norway?

The pictures we usually see in fundraisers are of poor African children. Hunger and poverty is ugly, and it calls for action.
The truth is that there are many positive developments in African countries, and we want these to become known. We need to change the simplistic explanations of problems in Africa. We need to educate ourselves on the complex issues and get more focus on how western countries have a negative impact on Africa’s development. If we want to address the problems the world is facing we need to do it based on knowledge and respect."

This is excellent and in line with a lot of the things I've been thinking, since taking an African History course in University and gradually increasing my understanding of world issues since graduation.  Travelling, reading a lot and talking to local people really does do a lot to undermine the story we are told through advertising on TV, I think. 

And here is one idea for a better way to approach aid: 

No comments: