Tuesday, October 26, 2010

10 Questions With Katie Smith Milway

Katie Smith Milway (The Human Farm; Growing Our Future) has released a new book for children, The Good Garden: How One Family Went from Hunger to Having Enough (Kids Can Press, 2010). She spoke with Open Book Toronto about gardening and activism with kids:

I hope my stories will help kids to feel empowered to apply their heads, hands and hearts to any problem to help themselves and others. And I especially hope The Good Garden interests them in combating world hunger — ideas for action are listed at the back of the book. I also hope we see even more school, community and family gardens sprouting up — so kids can identify, if only in a small way, with the billions of poor in our world who live off the land, and so they can experience the satisfaction and nutrition of self-grown produce. Read more...

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

How billionaires can help the world...or not

Lorenzo Fioramonti (Civicus Global Survey of the State of Civil Society, Vol. 2) provides a dazzling critique the underlying philosophy behind the poverty pledges of high profile "philanthrocapitalists" like Bill Gates and Warren Buffett.

If we recognize that big business is co-responsible for the state of our economies and social welfare, how can then the Giving Pledge address the injustices its supporters have contributed to creating? Philanthropy is a noble sentiment but it can at best scratch the surface of social problems. Often, unfortunately, it hides or even entrenches the structural injustices in our current economic and financial system: as long as you give something back – the philanthropy creed seems to imply - you can carry on with your life doing ‘business as usual’.