World Orphan Fund is taking initiative that a growing third world country desperately needs, but more than this we are seeking to offset the effects of the pollution that each of us, as individuals, is contributing.
We have developed our operations to have minimal impact on the environment and reduce our ecological footprint. One of the ways we have done so is through changing the means in which we provide charity to the poor and needy through prioritising renewable practices.
- Our food handouts are no longer distributed through ‘easy’ Styrofoam or plastic packaging but those coming to collect food bring their own pots and utensils. Styrofoam and plastics are commonly used materials which in developing countries like Cambodia are polluting areas with no proper garbage disposal systems and are non-biodegradable, i.e. they last forever.
- Going off grid with our solar panels and bore pumps. This would not only provide clean water to the whole village in an environmentally conscious way, but prevent locals from regularly purchasing bottled drinking water and throwing plastic waste into nearby rivers and streams.
- Bicycle Eid gift initiative in which we distributed bicycles to our orphans to encourage them to travel to school through environmentally friendly means of transport.
As individuals we cannot blame the issue on ‘greater’ structural powers when we do not intend to affect change ourselves. It is important not to disregard these small changes we can adopt into our lives, as a collective we have the ability to make immense changes to society.
We live in a world today that is divided at many levels, people are separated by immense gulfs in wealth and opportunity. All too often, religious, cultural and ethnic identity are treated as a source of division and difference from others. In the face of all these differences, climate change provides a strong reminder of the one thing we share in common, on which all of our survival rests; the Earth.