Alleviating global poverty is a task that must grow from the bottom-up, states Concern America, an international development and refugee aid organization, maintains as it aims to provide long-term, community-based development to developing countries around the world.

While also accepting the validity of helping developing countries through direct monetary aid and governmental initiatives, Concern America chooses to focus on how individuals, rather than corporations, can play a key role in societal change.

Thus, the small team of 19 aid-workers at Concern America trains community members in impoverished countries in health, education, construction and more so that they can become better-functioning members of a productive society. With this, the organization hopes to instill momentum and hope in a society that can help assure economic stability and basic human rights that would otherwise be absent.

Some of Concern America’s projects include its Marketplace of Fair Trade Crafts, which gives families in need access to fair prices and dependable markets while also preserving traditional culture. Additionally, Concern America promotes various field programs that instruct community members in skills such as midwifery that can improve women’s health quality while decreasing infant mortality rates.

In a world where well-meaning developmental aid can get lost in corruption schemes and bribery at high levels of society, Concern America prides itself in investing in individuals on the ground.

Concern America’s initiatives show that, while giving materials and money to those in need is beneficial, giving knowledge and opportunities can more often bring a society out of poverty.

– Alexandra Bruschi

Source: Concern America, OC Register
Photo: Ohio Fair Trade Marketplace