Let’s face it, for most of us reading this blog, we’ve got it good. Even when we think we might not, the overwhelming majority of the world faces far greater hardships than we could ever imagine. On a regular basis we are bombarded with the hope and desire to own more, consume more and have more. The ‘American Dream’ can often be one that drives us to always want more and in turn, never really be satisfied with what we do have and what is really important in our lives like family, freedom, our health and well-being.
The Humble Pie
- At least 80% of humanity lives on less than $10 a day
- According to UNICEF, 22,000 children die each day due to poverty
- Some 1.1 billion people in developing countries have inadequate access to water, and 2.6 billion lack basic sanitation
- Millions of women spend several hours a day just collecting water
- Each year children around the world loose 443 million school days from water-related illness
- For the 1.9 billion children from the developing world, there are 640 million without adequate shelter
Teaching our kids to have a greater perspective on our global community and a higher sense of humility provides them with the opportunity to be happier and more conscious adults. Perspective is good. In fact, it encourages empathy in our kids and that empathy leads our children to a greater understanding of others and the world around them. But this perspective has to be illuminated by us as parents.
So this holiday season as we serve up the turkey and enjoy the warm company of friends and family, let’s take the chance to really be thankful for what we have and recognize that the majority of the world will not partake as we do. Let us commit to teaching our kids that having the privilege of being wealthy, healthy and safe should also provide us with the responsibility to assist others who are not. We must utilize opportunities to enlighten our kids. The most powerful way I know is to volunteer alongside my kids. Take them to bring food to the poor or help out at the local food bank. Opportunities such as these allow your kids to gain perspective, humility and do so by actively being a part of a solution.
*Statistics derived from Global Issues “Poverty Facts and Stats”.