Wednesday, March 04, 2009

What's Our Guinea Worm Straw?

At the ICUUW, we broke into small groups to determine the major problems facing women worldwide, then we narrowed those down, then we discussed actionable solutions.

When we got to the part about solutions, I asked, "What's our guinea worm straw?"

I got a few strange looks before I explained.

I heard President Carter tell this story in a speech -- basically, the Carter Foundation wanted to find a significant problem that had a simple solution, so that they could do something and make a measurable difference.

Well, they did their research and learned of the problem with the guinea worm, or dracunculiasis.

They further learned that the disease requires humans. If you can stop humans drinking or entering infected waters, the thought goes, you will be able to eradicate the disease.

Through providing fine-mesh filters and pipe filters (the guinea worm straw), cases of dracunculiasis are down over 99%.

So you can see why I asked, "What's our guinea worm straw?"

Well, Jewish World Watch has their own version of the guinea worm straw to fight violence against women -- A solar cooker.

In a nutshell ... women in Darfur are attacked when they leave their camp to gather firewood. For $30, you can provide 2 solar cooker kits, which means they don't have to leave the camp. I'm squinching my budget a little this month so I can do this.

Look, it's not that I don't think we should pass resolutions giving voice to our disapproval of certain things. But we're a small group. I really like the idea of finding our own guinea worm straw ... or solar cooker.

1 comment:

ogre said...

Here's one.