I became an advocate for ONE Campaign a few years ago while living in San Antonio. Why should someone like me support critical needs like electricity for Africa? I believe Africa represents the future of our world. It has so much promise! And as a member of the Board of Directors of IREC: Interstate Renewable Energy Council, I am devoted to clean energy, not only across the United States, but globally.
Did you know …
“In sub-Saharan Africa, more than 620 million people do not have access to electricity. Thirty seven countries in sub-Saharan Africa have a national electrification rate of below 50 percent. These endemic power shortages affect all aspects of life. The President and Congress are working with African leaders, civil society organizations, and the private sector to dramatically change this dire situation. We know energy access is one of the most urgent priorities for people in sub-Saharan Africa with one in five Africans citing infrastructure – including electricity – as their most pressing concern.
The lack of electricity impacts people’s lives in at least five major ways, with a disproportionately negative impact on girls and women.”
“Africa’s 900 million people use less energy than Spain’s 47 million. In sub-Saharan Africa, 621 million people have no electricity whatsoever. Each year, 600,000 Africans – half of them children – die from household air pollution, caused by fuelwood and charcoal used for cooking.”
Clearly, the world must support African leaders as they work to improve this situation.
On a personal note, while growing up, our family was interested in Africa. When I went off to college, I was fortunate to study African literature with Dr. Bernth Lindfors. You might enjoy reading about Dr. Lindfors in this outstanding online journal, “Life and Letters: The One And Only Bernth Lindfors” (page 6).
Suffice it to say, when reading African literature, I was inspired by its grace and wisdom. One author I remember particularly is Nigerian writer Chinua Achebe.
“Once you allow yourself to identify with the people in a story, then you might begin to see yourself in that story even if on the surface it’s far removed from your situation. This is what I try to tell my students: this is one great thing that literature can do – it can make us identify with situations and people far away.”
That is exactly what African literature did for me! I urge you to consider African authors the next time you are seeking a good book to read. And please, support ONE Campaign and those working to release millions of Africans from the grip of extreme poverty.
TEXSAR: Texas Search and Rescue is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that is fully capable and multi-discipline in Search & Rescue, Swiftwater Rescue, Wildland Fire and Disaster Response. All-volunteer for several years, thanks to a grant from Jimmy Buffett and the concert, “Singing for Change,” TEXSAR will be establishing its first office and expanding its services further across Texas. I am pleased to be assisting the organization in this pioneering effort.
TEXSAR prides itself on being in a constant state of readiness. It can be deployed in a moment’s notice. TEXSAR volunteers are continually training and exercising opportunities to further the education and ability to perform of each team member. One of the best things about TEXSAR is here is no charge for its services. The organization is normally deployed by the Governor of Texas; local, state and federal agencies; and relief organizations like the American Red Cross. Teams are currently based in Austin, Galveston/Houston and Dallas. Stay tuned for more news!
Looking for more information about my background? Follow this link to my biographical website.