We are excited to announce the launch of One Day's Wages -- an international grassroots movement dedicated to ending extreme global poverty. We are certainly not the first and thankfully, not the last. We're encouraged by organizations like Sojourners that remind the Church that God cares about the poor, the hungry, and the sick -- both locally and globally.
It is stunning to consider the realities of extreme global poverty:
- 25,000 children under the age of 5 die each day due to poverty-related causes.
- Nearly 900 million people do not have access to clean water. Unsafe water and lack of basic sanitation cause 80% of all sickness and disease, and kill more people every year than all forms of violence, including war.
- Nearly a billion people entered the 21st century unable to read a book or sign their names.
- Nearly 11,500 people die every day from HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria.
For my wife and I, we've always known of the disparity in the world; we always knew the statistics about extreme global poverty. In fact, we've memorized them. But it was traveling to a few places and seeing with our own eyes -- the faces, stories, children, and families behind the numbers -- that "wrecked" our lives. But we also saw hope, courage, and strength in communities, organizations, women, men, and children as they sought to uplift themselves out of poverty -- if they were only shown dignity, respect, and the opportunities to pursue basic human rights.
It's by far more complex but it's also very simple: It shouldn't be this way and doesn't have to be this way. We have to believe it: In our lifetime, we can eradicate extreme global poverty.
These are some of the reasons that compelled us to take a step further and make some life decisions to start One Day's Wages.
Here are three simple ways you can help with One Day's Wages:
- Visit the Web site onedayswages.org and create an account.
- Be a FAN on Facebook: facebook.com/onedayswages
- Spread the word. Use the tools on our Web site (like Twitter) to spread the movement with your friends and network.
The numbers regarding extreme global poverty are overwhelming, but there is some good news. Individuals and organizations around the world are already doing amazing work to fight extreme global poverty. We're not trying to re-invent the wheel, but rather to collaborate and partner with others like you.
Eugene Cho, a second-generation Korean-American, is the founder and lead pastor of Quest Church in Seattle and the executive director of Q Cafe, an innovative nonprofit neighborhood café and music venue. He and his wife are also launching a grassroots movement, One Day's Wages, to fight extreme global poverty. You can stalk him at his blog or follow him on Twitter.