Rusty Radiator Awards, 2014 – SAIH

SAIH – The Norwegian Students’ and Academics’ International Assistance Fund are at it again at 🙂

In their video, did you recognize any familiar stereotypes about how the African continent tends to be portrayed, and the image of the “white hero” and the “exotic other”?

Hunger and poverty is ugly, and it calls for action. However, they argue, that we need to create engagement built on knowledge, not stereotypes. We need to change the way fundraising campaigns are communicating issues of poverty and development. This is why they are awarding creative fundraising campaigns with the Golden Radiator Award, and stereotypical campaigns with the Rusty Radiator Award. An international jury has nominated seven videos, and the winners are chosen through an internet poll. What are you waiting for? Go and vote now.

Not sure how to vote? Read a little  first to get you in the mood.

Gullies of Poverty; Baringo and Kerio valleys

Soil erosion, environmental degradation, desertification, climate change all sound synonymous. But are they? Not really, but they are all parasites that feed almost the same way.

Exposed roots due to extensive erosion
Exposed roots due to extensive erosion

I’ll let pictures speak for Baringo and Elgeyo Marakwet counties. Degradation there, and particularly soil erosion, is at massive scales. The rills have turned into death traps for livestock and the larger gullies highways for the nutrient rich top soil that ends up in the Kerio River and the Lake Kamnarok. Poverty level continues to rise in Kerio Valley.

Deep gullies are highways to the Rivers and Lakes
Deep gullies are highways to the Rivers and Lakes



The results? Siltation and the subsequent effects. As we speak the lake is becoming smaller, and a less favorite spot for the wildlife (elephants especially) that loved to quench their thirst there for fear of getting stuck in the muddy shores.


High siltation in Kerio River
High siltation in Kerio River

Is hope really lost here? Is this place damaged beyond repair? Really? The degradation has been going on for years, but no one seems to notice. I see people run to rehabilitate other places that aren’t really bad and I’m left wondering why they keep neglecting this. UNCCD has it’s focus on prevention of land degradation and desertification. World Agroforestry Center is a close partner. We have the Vetiver Network in our midst. The UNEP headquarters is in our city? Let us pool resources and convert this place into one breathtaking sight of nature.

“Business Leadership to Fight Poverty” – London Conference

As a business or professional person, your skills can have an impact of the neediest areas of the world. By mentoring and training emerging entrepreneurs, helping establish a business or investing, you can bring transformation and combat poverty.
Our London conference is set for the 25th of May so book the date in your diary now. The conference will be held at the Congress Centre and  we are putting together an exciting programme for the day.

The day provides the ideal environment to:

Become informed on the current issues and opportunities;

  • Become engaged as part of a movement that is motivated by a passion for social justice and has the means to have a concrete, sustainable and scalable impact.
  • Hear inspiring case studies and keynote speakers, receive practical guidance, network with business leaders and learn how your skills and resources can bring transformation to the poor.

Book now

The Economics of Poverty – the Top 10 Books

Amy Lockwood, the Deputy Director of the Center for Innovation in Global Health at Stanford’s School of Medicine, has drawn up a suggested reading list for those wanting to start understanding development, aid, and poverty. Here are her suggestions:

The White Man’s Burden: Why the West’s Efforts to Aid the Rest Have Done So Much Ill and So Little Good (2006)
by William Easterly

The End of Poverty: Economic Possibilities for Our Time (2006)
by Jeffrey Sachs

The Bottom Billion: Why the Poorest Countries are Failing and What Can Be Done About It (2007)
by Paul Collier

The Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid: Eradicating Poverty Through Profits (2009)
by C.K. Prahalad

Creating a World Without Poverty: Social Business and the Future of Capitalism (2009)
by Muhammad Yunus

Out of Poverty: What Works When Traditional Approaches Fail (2009)
by Paul Polak

Dead Aid: Why Aid is Not Working and How There Is a Better Way for Africa (2009)
by Dambisa Moyo

Poor Economics A Radical Rethinking of the Way to Fight Global Poverty (2011)
by Abhijit Banerjee & Esther Duflo

Development As Freedom (2000)
by Amartya Sen

Good to Great and the Social Sectors (2005)
by Jim Collins

To read the reasoning and short introductions to each, go to the original article at

Leila Chirayath Janah: Ending Poverty in the Digital Age

Leila Chirayath Janah: Ending Poverty in the Digital Age from TEDx Silicon Valley on Vimeo.

Samasource enables marginalized people, from refugees in Kenya to women in rural Pakistan, to receive life-changing work opportunities via the Internet. In parallel, we enable socially responsible companies, small businesses, nonprofits, and entrepreneurs in the US to contribute to economic development by buying services from our workforce at fair prices.