Micah Challenge Australia Blog

 

The Micah Challenge blog is a space for discussion and debate about the issues of global poverty, faith, advocacy and justice and the Millennium Development Goals. This blog aims to provoke thought and challenge you to learn more about the issues discussed. We welcome your comments.

Micah Challenge is a global campaign of Christians speaking out against poverty and injustice. Click here to visit the Micah Challenge website.

  • My little friend Langtham

    Posted by Stevie

    21 November, 2011

    Meeting Langtham was a very special moment in my life. He is one year old and lives in Lusaka, Zambia. Langtham has cerebral palsy ... as do I. From vastly different parts of the world, we shared a few minutes together. More than that, we share the way our bodies work. Here's a video about the day I met Langtham: After I came home to Australia, I wrote this poem, holding dear my encounter with him: Dear Langthammy little friendthe meeting of our livesthat moment in timemy heart has framedToo young to remember meyou will always be rememberedDiversityin our ethnicity, territory, opportunitiesthe world between usa commonality we share –not an unfortunate afflictionnor some spiritual retributionNo, our bodies dance to a different beatour tongues, to a different tuneYour song, is beautifulYour eyes are as richas the soil from whichlife springs and takes rootMay your life be poetryspeaking the deeper truthMay your heart be warmedby your mother’s loveas your skin is warmedby the sunMay you treasure, nurturethe space between mother and sonMay friends… read more

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  • Glimmers of Hope

    Posted by Micah Challenge

    15 November, 2011

    On a recent trip to Cambodia, I ventured an hour outside Phnom Penh to visit a project of the National Centre for Disabled Persons (NCDP). The trip itself told a story. Leaving from the centre of Phnom Penh we drove on well surfaced roads past well constructed and large buildings – offices, government ministries, restaurants and homes. The further we got from the city the more run down the roads and housing became, until we were on dirt roads pockmarked with deep holes and bordered by small, shoddy timber and iron houses on stilts. The contrast between the wealth and poverty in this country was vividly displayed. Arriving at an obviously poor, rural community we drove through the gates of a local school. Alighting the van we were shown into a classroom where a dozen or so severely disabled children sat at desks. A 15 year old girl with a twisted body and intellectual difficulties grinned mischievously as she wheeled it into the teacher; a curly headed girl with a broad grin concentrated on a puzzle; three boys with intellectual difficulties and twisted… read more

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  • Voices for Justice 2011

    Posted by Micah

    18 September, 2011

    Participant Josh, reflects on the purpose of Voices for Justice and why he's back again this year... This weekend I'm heading down to Canberra. It's not for a leisurely holiday (although I have recently come to really like Canberra as a holiday destination!), but rather to attend The Micah Challenge's Voices for Justice conference. Basically, the whole idea for the conference is that a bunch of Christians from all around Australia descend on Canberra once a year in order to lobby our Federal political representatives in regards to acting on reducing global poverty. We hold them accountable to their bilateral agreement to the U.N. "Millennium Development Goals" (of halving world poverty by 2015), and also spend time learning more deeply about issues of justice and poverty. I like the work of The Micah Challenge generally, but I really love this conference for a couple of reasons: Firstly, it's not just another Christian conference where everyone gets together for the sole purpose of feeling good about themselves and to get motivated for the period of time until… read more

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  • The poor in spirit

    Posted by Micah

    6 September, 2011

    I've always thought it's a cop-out for Christian development workers working in poor communities to say, "Well, even if these people still can't feed themselves, at least now they've prayed the sinner's prayer." But lately I've been thinking it's more than a cop-out-it's just wrong. Many Christian aid and development agencies, including those involved with the Micah Challenge coalition seek to address the needs of a child living in poverty across many different areas of his or her life. We call this approach holistic child development: programs that strive to meet not only a child's physical needs but their spiritual, economic, social and emotional needs as well. The solutions to some of those needs are clear, even though achieving them might not be simple. An economic need requires money, employment and skills. Physical needs are met through food, water and healthcare. I get a bit stuck on meeting spiritual needs though, I admit. Isn't that a pastor's job, or the Sunday school teacher? Or better yet-the parents of the child? Better still, what if we wait until… read more

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