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.

  • MDG Report 2011 - How should Christians respond?

    Posted by Amanda

    19 July, 2011

    The idea of 'promise' is important to Christians; indeed it is important to all of us humans, made in God's image. Thanks to the work of Micah Challenge supporters around the world, the Millennium Development Goal promises made in 2000 are more than ever in the heart of the church We cannot ignore them now or decide they are not worthy of effort. As we near that completion date of 2015, we should be encouraged to act with even more persistence. The current hunger disaster on our TV screens in East Africa might seem to indicate that nothing ever changes, but there is much good news: The 2011 UN MDG Report released on 7 July by Ban ki-Moon, gives reason for hope. MDG2 on primary education and MDG3 on gender equality are within reach for many nations, especially in sub-Saharan Africa. Child deaths are down to 8.1 million per year - 3.3 million fewer than 20 years ago - or 12,000 fewer deaths each day. Christian action and advocacy for children has helped to produce these heartening changes! Malaria deaths are down 20% this century. HIV/AIDS infections are… read more

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  • Cheap vaccines make good business sense

    Posted by Amanda

    9 June, 2011

    Global pharmaceutical companies don't often get a great press. They are usually known for their huge profits and their desire to direct research dollars into solving potentially profitable western medical issues, like hair and weight loss. But this week, Andrew Witty, the head of the third largest pharmaceutical company in the world, Glaxo Smith Kline, gave us a different picture. He announced that "GSK will cut 95 percent off the price of a diarrhoea vaccine for the world's poorest nations, potentially saving hundreds of thousands of lives." Witty said the rotavirus vaccine price cut was an effort to be "in step with society" and he encouraged other drug companies to do the same. Under the new pricing arrangement, the poorest nations will be able to buy a dose of GSK's vaccine for US$2.50, just five percent of the $50 western price. The company has guaranteed sales of its drug at cost price under the deal. It aims to use profits generated in wealthier countries to subsidise the provision of drugs to poorer countries at a price that will just cover the cost of… read more

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  • Our crucial task

    Posted by Joel

    23 May, 2011

    I have just returned from three days meetings in Malaysia with some of our Micah Challenge National Coordinators from across the world. It's been both moving and encouraging to hear the stories of commitment and determination which flow so easily in settings like these. One National Coodinator told us how important it was for them to spend limited resources to travel to Malaysia, simply because their recent involvement with the campaign was crucial to their nation. Another Coordinator spends alternate weeks between his home and his office hundreds of miles away in order to stay involved in the campaign without uprooting his family and derailing his wife's profession... And we also heard about the struggles of campaigns: limited cash and capacity to do a big job; the potential for feeling alone; the uphill climb to convince churches that God takes advocacy for the poor really seriously; and the challenges of reminding governments of their promises. 

But I will particularly remember the creative icebreaker that happened on the first morning we met.… read more

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  • Do we really value Mothers?

    Posted by Tabitha

    5 May, 2011

    I saw my sister give birth. Yep, that's right! And it was way less scary than most of you are thinking! In fact I found the experience hugely encouraging, and I now understand what people mean by the cliché "the miracle of birth". With her husband beside her and the attention of an experienced midwife, my sister was able to labour in a birthing suite at her local public hospital (that of the acclaimed TV program RPA, no less). She had access to a large room, private courtyard and spacious ensuite. She chose a natural water-birth and, thankfully, experienced no complications in bringing her new baby girl, Mabel, into the world. They went home that afternoon after receiving breastfeeding support, and a child and maternal health nurse visited them at home for the next few weeks. I was amazed by the quality of medical care they received. Sadly, this is far from the experience for many women in our world. Just last week I got back from a trip to India where I visited the development projects of some of our endorsing agencies. I asked one of the women I met what… read more

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