Wednesday, May 18, 2005

The Power of Giving

First of all, I wish all the best to Neurotic Iraqi Wife. She is heading to Baghdad to join her hubby. For almost a year, we enjoyed reading the best love story on the Web. I wish her and her husband to grow old together.

Now let's move to the subject of the day. You probably already read Ali's post regarding Spirit of America. I commented on the subject. I told about my experience with the organization. Jim Hake, Founder and CEO of SoA, left a comment on Ali's blog too. As I expected when writing the comment, the organization wasn't happy with my comment. I care more about the Iraqi people than anything else. That's why I posted my comment.

Jim e-mailed me this afternoon and asked for more details about the times I contacted the organization and did not get a reply. I e-mailed him the details. One occurrence was when I tried to help Najma's school. The other time was when I needed help with Merna's treatment. A Free Writer from Mosul contacted them to help sick Iraqi children with Thalassemia, who advised me SoA didn't reply back to his e-mail.

Jim told me in his e-mail that they help people in two ways:

  1. "Accept requests from Americans serving abroad."

  2. "On a very, very selective basis we support larger scale programs that have broad potential impact - examples are Friends of Democracy, the Arabic Blogging tool (about which you have also commented) and the America-Iraq School Partners program."

Let's forget about my requests even though I believe they were very important. But, what about Free Writer's request for help? He's an Iraqi. He lives in Iraq. He's trying desperately to help Iraqi children as much as he can. He knows best what's needed in Iraq. If any charity looks at his blog, they'll have lots of ideas on how to help Iraqis. But, we have to wait for an American serving abroad to decide for Iraqis what's important and not important. This doesn't apply to SoA only. It applies to other charities too.

As for the Arabic blogging tool, many Middle Eastern bloggers post in Arabic using Blogger's free blogging tool. It's a free tool and you can blog in any language. Have a look at a list of Arabic blogs by clicking on this link.

I'm not against SoA or any other organization that considers helping Iraqi people. I just wonder why those organizations don't respond to the Iraqis who ask for their help -- It happened with other organizations too.

An "Unfortunately, we can't help you with your request," is good enough for people who are waiting for an answer. Especially, when someone is desperate for an answer.

Don't worry. I'm not very disappointed. I just realized not everyone believes in the star thrower's concept.

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