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You're Already There

Do you have any idea how you, as a regular CRS supporter, have helped save lives and dollars during this year's drought in East Africa?

Joyce Wambua harvests a papaya

A CRS beneficiary harvests a papaya from a tree on her farm in Kenya's drought-affected Kathonzweni District. Photo by David Snyder

Did you know, for instance, that you were saving lives before the drought ever threatened?

Check out this story about a guy named Mussie Sala. Those fruits and vegetables in his garden? Yup … that was you.

The safety net program you helped make possible in Ethiopia has for years given food to Keddo Umar's family during "hungry seasons." The food helped her save money and keep her kids in school. Next year, she probably won't get a food giveaway. Because of you, she won't need it.

CRS President Ken Hackett talks about this special relationship you have with the poor in his letter this month.

At recent count, more than 12 million people are facing a long period of hunger, malnutrition, and even famine and starvation. That figure is equal to the combined populations of Los Angeles, Chicago, Philadelphia, Dallas, Seattle, Boston and Washington, D.C.

And that's just East Africa. Consider Haiti, Sudan, Pakistan … as you know, the list goes on.

How can you possibly help that many millions of people?

Ask someone who's harvesting fruit in the midst of the worst drought in two decades.

Or ask these women in Afghanistan. You're helping them get an education. Think that'll bring long-term benefits? They do.

Thanks to your ongoing support, millions of people throughout the world will survive disasters. Better still, fewer people will hurt when disaster strikes.

The next time you hear about a crisis striking the neediest, most vulnerable, anywhere in the world, remember this—before the news teams land, before the aid groups gear up to respond, even as you dig down and give again to relieve immediate suffering, wherever it is—you're already there.

And if you're not there yet, here's how to get there.

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