We are in February 2023 and millions around the world continue to grapple misery, ill-health, climate change, war, inflation and disaster. Last week’s catastrophic earthquake in Turkey and already ravaged Syria was another shocker. As we recuperate from the social and economic impacts of the pandemic, Ukraine war, and conflict in several countries, progress in global health, poverty alleviation and education is constantly pushed back.
As Canadians, we represent almost every bit of this world transcending language, cultural and religious barriers. We are privileged to work and live in our beautiful country and our lives are interconnected in the world’s global village. Happenings in one part of the world have a rippling effect across regions – be it war, inflation or climate change.
Heart-wrenching statistics, stories and pictures on the internet beckon us to act for the deprived – young children missing out on school, lifesaving vaccinations; families struggling to gather two square meals owing to poverty and food insecurity; livelihoods challenged due to disastrous effects of climate change – the list is endless.
These developmental shortfalls need our assistance, not just empathy and compassion, for our action will speak louder than our words. Canadian dollars have saved lives and do so each day. Canada must increase its International Assistance Envelope (IAE) by CAD$1.9 billion over the next three years to reach a minimum of CAD$10 billion in the 2025-26 budget, keeping up with government’s commitment to increase IAE every year toward 2030 to realize the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. The world needs you Canada – go, put those smiles back!
Preety Sharma, Milton, ON