Christian humanitarian aid organization, World Vision, launches a historic $350 million campaign for 72 million people to fight against extreme poverty. Especially now that the progress of the advocacy for the poor is threatened due to the coronavirus global crisis.
According to World Vision President Edgar Sandoval, this campaign has become the organization’s “largest-ever global response” in their 70-year history. He told The Christian Post in an interview, “We are aiming to reach 72 million people, including 36 million children. To do this, we need to raise $350 million. And that’s what everyone is working hard to do — to raise the funds that we need to serve the most vulnerable.”
In 1990, 1.9 billion people were recorded to be living in extreme poverty, according to the World Bank. But in the recent estimates in 2015, the record dropped to 734 million people. That is to say, 36% of the people in the previous record has come out of extreme poverty.
Hence, the President believes the world “could basically turn the clock back 30 years on extreme poverty if nothing is done.”
He pointed out, “This virus has the destructive power to potentially turn the clock back 30 years and all the progress that the world has made on eliminating extreme poverty. It is urgent that we respond and that we respond with this level of scale.”
The Key Players
Then he said that the pastors’ role is crucial in reaching out to the world’s most vulnerable.
“We know that pastors and other faith leaders can be a real power, force, in stopping COVID-19 because they have the position of trust in their communities and they can,” he said.
Further, he added, “Drawing from previous experience, this is not the first time that World Vision is partnering with pastors and other faith leaders. This is something we have done in every single pandemic that we faced. Whether it is HIV and AIDS, or the Zika or Ebola outbreaks, this is the model that works.”
World Vision plans to mobilize its 37,000 staffers worldwide. They will work together with 400,000 pastors and other faith leaders as well, along with some 220,000 community health workers.
The Christian organization will focus on “promoting preventative measures to stop the spread of the virus. Supporting health systems and the workers that operate in those health systems. And addressing all the secondary impacts of the virus on children and communities.”
Edgar revealed, “Just in our first two months of [the pandemic] we’ve already equipped over 36,000 pastors and faith leaders to disseminate the first phase of our response.”
A Threat In Fighting Against Extreme Poverty
Moreover, whilst the global economy is suffering an immense recession during this pandemic, the World Bank predicts that “the poor could suffer.”
Also, the ongoing crisis could “erase almost all the progress made in the last five years,” according to the international monetary agency. For this reason, the agency estimates between 40 million to 60 million people will fall into extreme poverty this year.
“These are very different times and the amount of uncertainty is quite high,” he said. “World Vision has been focused on marching forward with its work through prayer, kindness, and a bias for action. “
Then he continued, “We believe this is our time. This is a time where every act of courage, love, and belief in the name of Jesus does more than just stop the spread of fear, it replaces it with hope.”
Source: The Christian Post