Military Life Answers:

Answers for Family; New and Experienced

Poverty Worldwide and What Military Families Can Do To Help

Posted by Jeremy Brown on October 15, 2008

poverty \ˈpä-vər-tē\

1 a: the state of one who lacks a usual or socially acceptable amount of money or material possessions b: renunciation as a member of a religious order of the right as an individual to own property. 3 a: debility due to malnutrition b: lack of fertility
Other possible synonyms are: dearth, destitution, scarcity, indigence, want.
Do I have your attention?  I hope so.  I can list the death tolls of poverty related social maladies, yet I won’t.  For that visit this website to become more educated of its impact.  What I will be discussing is three ways that you as an Military Family can help.  When I say Military Family it means every Soldier, single or otherwise, every Parent, Spouse, Child, Concerned Friend.  That is key, because no matter your stance on international politics, the concept of an interconnected world is undeniable.
Your military base has many fantastic programs that aid those in need.  Look to your Emergency Relief Programs, Lending Lockers, Food Vouchers, Chaplain Services and many others.  These programs have limited funding, yet with your help they can accomplish more.  A single volunteer is a force multiplier.  They can instantly reach more people, stuff more envelopes, see more people and touch more lives.  Volunteer!  See your Installation Volunteer Coordinator to help out your Installation and if you can’t find them contact me so I can help point you in the right direction.
The holiday season is upon us and it is noted that the spirit of giving is growing, but why did it ever shrink in the first place?  I encourage you to donate gently used toys to your respective Installation Gift Programs, but look also to the hospital Layette Programs and even your local Thrift Store.  Those gently used items can be sold or given to those in need.  Think of it as a cathartic way to de-clutter!
Social awareness is not a subject that is comfortable, but it shouldn’t be.  Don’t let it become the elephant in the room.  Poverty, Need or whatever term you choose to call it is prevalent and its not the purview of the Third World.  It is on your Installation, in your Battalions, Brigades, Squadrons, and Companies.  Stamp it out.  Give those who need it, direction; yet never fear to help raise consciousness that sometimes people need a hand up.  Support when they are down.  Be aware of the fact that Poverty exists in your backyard.  In your FRONT yard!  Take a stand.
I leave you with a speech by Martin Luther King, Jr.  Take a stand and isn’t your fellow human, Military Family, Friend worth taking a stand.

I say to you, this morning, that if you have never found something so dear and precious to you that you will die for it, then you aren’t fit to live.

You may be 38 years old, as I happen to be, and one day, some great opportunity stands before you and calls upon you to stand for some great principle, some great issue, some great cause. And you refuse to do it because you are afraid.

You refuse to do it because you want to live longer. You’re afraid that you will lose your job, or you are afraid that you will be criticized or that you will lose your popularity, or you’re afraid that somebody will stab or shoot or bomb your house. So you refuse to take a stand.

Well, you may go on and live until you are ninety, but you are just as dead at 38 as you would be at ninety.

And the cessation of breathing in your life is but the belated announcement of an earlier death of the spirit.

You died when you refused to stand up for right.

You died when you refused to stand up for truth.

You died when you refused to stand up for justice.

-Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

From the sermon “But, If Not” delivered at Ebenezer Baptist Church on November 5, 1967.


2 Responses to “Poverty Worldwide and What Military Families Can Do To Help”

  1. household 6 hooah said

    There are so many things that we can do to help each other. Some comments on a recent post of mine has reminded me that when we move that we need to give/donate the belonging that we are not keeping to someone in need. And John McCain’s acceptence speech reminded me that we are all “called to serve”. Many figures throughout history have made those types of statements. Dr King’s words are as true today as they were 40 plus years ago. As Army/Military families, we can always find a place to serve.

  2. Fantastic post!!

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