Arms Around The Child: An Incredible Charity Doing Some Fantastic Work

This week I want to write about a charity called Arms Around The Child (AATC) that I have recently been in contact with over the possibility of developing a partnership with BODO. They are a fantastic organisation that does a lot of great work in incredibly impoverished parts of the world and I wanted to tell you a little bit about them and help promote their incredibly worthy cause.AATC
They were founded in 2012 with their mission being to provide safe, loving homes for children living in adversity. They have three main aims based around protecting children and providing a nurturing environment in which they can grow and achieve their full potential.
They do some incredible relief work within communities in India and South Africa that have been devastated by AIDS/HIV by helping to provide anti-retro viral treatment and providing the medical and social care needed to promote good health.
Another focus of AATC is to raise awareness of the plight of children living in communities that have been impacted by AIDS/HIV and/or living in parentless households, by conducting campaigns and promoting education and understanding. As well as this, the AATC is also determined to have a positive impact by increasing the understanding of governments by making them aware of the reality of the situation faced by children living in these communities, in the hope that they can bring about positive changes in policy to help the situation improve.
They provide a loving and nurturing environment to children who have lost their parents to AIDS or who are at risk of contracting HIV. They provide much-needed education on the subject, helping these children to understand the risks and how to keep themselves safe, they provide medical treatment and most of help to empower these children to go on to lead happy, healthy lives.
Describing their mission on their facebook page, AATC explain the dire situation of many orphans:
“Orphans are affected by many factors. Shame, fear, rejection, denial of basic education and health care, discrimination. Orphans suffer with depression, anxiety, neglect, emotional trauma with little or no support and this often results in exploitation and abuse. The future can be very bleak for these gorgeous children. Arms Around The Child aims to advance awareness of this horror and through Global media and campaigning we will engage the public and translate that engagement into action.”
I think they are an incredible organisation carrying out some really important work and they really deserve our support and respect. I have a great deal of admiration for the work that they are doing and hope that in the future, BODO can play its part in helping them to achieve their goals.

The Racism That Has Left Us All Reeling

The last few weeks have been incredibly shocking for myself as a British citizen. The EU referendum results have left everyone reeling and emotions are running high. Whilst I do not want to be drawn into the politics of either camp, one thing that I will speak out about is the incredibly horrifying racist attacks that have taken place since the result was announced. All over the country, race crime is being reported, as community centres, individuals and entire ethnic groups have been verbally abused and worse!
I can’t explain to you how upsetting this has been for me and basically all decent human beings who have functioning moral compass!
I was near tears as I watched a former soldier being abused by some unruly teenagers on a tram in Manchester, being told to get out of the country and having beer hurled at him on a crowded carriage! This gentleman remained calm and did not retaliate to this disgusting and vile attack, when many others would have. Another story that broke my heart, was about an elderly German lady in Chester, who had had excrement hurled and her door and suffered unspeakable abuse. This poor woman, who has lived in the UK since the 70s, has not left her house in 3 days because she was too afraid!! What kind of country have we become if our citizens are too afraid to leave their homes in case they are racially abused in their own neighbourhoods!!
I have spoken to friends and family, many of whom were born in the UK, but have non-white origins who claim that they are afraid when they travel alone, looking around nervously on trains and buses, hoping to see other foreign faces that might be allies if they are targeted by racists!
I have also read about the safety pin campaign that is gathering momentum, an American living in London started the movement on twitter, suggesting that people wear a safety pin to show their solidarity with immigrants. To show people that you are someone they can sit next to on a train, or a bus stop without fear of abuse or intolerance. It is a simple symbol, cheap and easy to obtain, without any affiliations to any political parties, but it lets people know that you are a friend not a foe.

The safety pin campaign started on Twitter

The safety pin campaign started on Twitter

I think it is an incredible idea, but it saddens me greatly that it has come to this. We shouldn’t have to look out for allies when we are out and about, we shouldn’t have to hope that we can go to the shops to buy some bread without people being told to “F**K off out of the country”!
There are no excuses for the disgusting, despicable, behaviour that we have seen in this country over the last few days and it is plain to see that there is something very, very wrong with our society. I can but hope that these horrible rifts that are appearing will heal soon and I urge all residents to show some compassion to their fellow man and stop this madness.