#TalkJustice Health Care

talkjustice

Kids #TalkJustice Access to Health Care

Access to health care is an issue that really affects everyone. Even when families have insurance they may lack funds for co-pays, or still be in need of secondary services like vision, dental, and specialists. Beyond debates, because there is probably no country that has found the one-hundred percent correct answer to access, how can we understand and support access to health care in our communities and globally. Globally the situation is even more desperate as access to the simplest care is out of reach for many.

Health Care Discussion Starters:

health care conversation starters

Help your family go deeper:

  • The cost of health care is staggering… who can you help with this burden? Do you know families you can support?
  • Discuss specific illnesses with children. Help them understand what might go into care, what special equipment you might need, how often you might have to visit the doctor.
  • Talk about parts of world where you might have to walk miles and miles to get to a health clinic. If you are bringing a sick family member what challenges might that bring?
  • Talk about needing glasses, but having no way to acquire them.
  • In disasters how important is health care? What things change in moments of crisis?
  • What might be different about doctors offices around the world?
  • The disease of malaria can be prevented by a simple bed net, yet many do not have access to that. What other sicknesses might be prevented by something simple (clean water, sanitation, clinics.)
  • Do you have a free health clinic in your area? Is there anyway you can support their efforts?
  • How can your family take care of its own health?
  • How do you think health care where you live compares to other places around the world?
  • How can you support efforts to help people have access to health care?
  • Do you think this might be an important cause for communities to think about?
  • If you know someone going through an illness or has a chronic illness how could you support their family? How could you support a classmate?
  • Talk about root causes of heath care disparities: race, local resources, location in the world, poverty, immigrant or refugee, women in parts of the world.

Kids Books about Health Care:

books about health careI Lost my Tooth in Africa by: Penda Diakite

Mimi’s Village By: Katie Smith Milway

Nest By: Esther Ehrlich

The Lemonade Club By: Patricia Polacco

The Fault in our Stars By: John Greene

The Heaven Shop By: Deborah Ellis

16 Ways to take Action: 

immuzation banner

A Health Care Twitter list to follow.

Follow our About Proximity #TalkJustice Pinterest Board.

#TalkJustice Summer Serve Play Groups! Come over to our Facebook Event Page to learn more. Invite friends! We will be exploring topics and making a difference in community, using a series of books donated to us from CitizenKid. Hosted by About Proximity (that’s me) and my Mom, a public school family advocate for two decades.

What are your thoughts? 

 

 

Thankfulness to All

Krisimmigration

A Guest Post from Kris Van Engen 

Growing up on an Iowa farm, over the course of thousands of hours, I walked beans, detasseled corn, shelled corn, fed calves, fixed fences, chopped weeds, bailed hay, helped thaw frozen drinkers, reorganized the machine shed, and made beds of straw for newborn pigs. A cow even rammed me into the side of a barn and left me with a broken arm and jaw. I have special memories of working alongside my parents and my three brothers.

bros

It was hard work, but worth it, because I have this badge of honor that for some reason people respond to with respect, that I once worked on a farm.

This is why I am frustrated about the U.S. immigration debates. When I work in agricultural it’s noble–farmers feeding the world–but immigrants doing the exact same work are told to “get in line,” and as real farmers know, there is no line.

Seventy percent of all US farm workers are undocumented immigrants. Not just 70% of immigrant farm workers but 70% of all US farm employees.

The legal entry system has not worked for over 40 years. Agriculture utilizes immigrants but our laws say no to their visa requests and yet the IRS collect billions in taxes from undocumented workers. Food flows from farm to table but beneath the surface 70% of the people doing the work don’t have access to a legal immigration system. They are completing the hard agriculture jobs that are not filled by Americans.

At some point we stopped paying attention to real people. God asks us to defend the cause of immigrants and to love the stranger. I pray the 70% statistic will awaken us to just how broken this immigration system is.

When we pay attention to the fact that our food, even our Communion bread, comes from this unfair system maybe we will stop taking sides and work together. Imagine the joy on farms when all workers are granted access to legal immigration–when employers don’t feel the guilt of a precarious work force. Proposals to achieve this have been endorsed across the political spectrum. Now Congress needs the will to act.

This isn’t about Republicans vs. Democrats. This is about all of us and every bag we fill with groceries. The choice is ours to pray for new immigration laws with our words and actions or to ignore ongoing suffering.

If you want to act you could host a viewing of this film, or even bring this workshop to your church. You can also call your member of Congress at 866-877-5552 and tell them you are ready for new immigration laws. Here is CRC Justice’s advocacy page for easy ways to help.

You may remember Paul Harvey’s ‘So God Made a Farmer’ speech from the Super Bowl. What if, when we listened to those words, we rightly ascribed such thankfulness to all U.S. farmer workers–

KrisKris VanEngen lives in Holland, MI with his wife and two children. He is the Congregational Justice Mobilizer for World Renew and the Office of Social Justice. He carries with him some precious memories of growing up on a farm with his three brothers; Kirk, Nic and PJ.

Women and Girls Fund by Global Impact

A call to action:

Roughly one billion people in the world live in extreme poverty; the majority of them are women.

WG Walking

{Photo courtesy of Global Impact}

Each year, about 300,000 women suffer a preventable death during pregnancy and childbirth.

WG Care

{Photo courtesy of CARE.}

Two-thirds of the children denied primary education are girls.

WG School

{Photo courtesy of PLAN}

Women and girls make up ninety-eight percent of trafficking victims.

wg girl

{Photo courtesy of Global Impact}

1 billion women will be victims of violence in their lifetime.

wg little

{Photo courtesy of Global Impact}

1 in 9 girls is forced into marriage before her 15th birthday.

wg sad

{Photo courtesy of CARE}

Today, through my work with Global Team of 200, I am able to introduce to you the work and images of The Global Impact Women and Girls Fund. 

Global Impact brings together four respected, best-in-the-business international organizations focused on helping women and girls.  Global Impact partners with CARE, World Vision, Plan USA, ICRW International Center for Research on Women.

Through this fund, you join with millions of people to change the world by helping to provide education, protection and rehabilitation from violence and exploitation, job training, healthcare, safe drinking water and a host of other services to women and girls around the world.

wg sewing

{Photo courtesy of PLAN}

By investing in a girl, she can lift herself out of poverty and abuse, altering the condition of her family, her community and, ultimately, the world.

wg one girl

{Photo courtesy of PLAN}

Last year at this time About Proximity was hosting the documentary film Girl Rising.

These are the faces, the images of the women and girls. 

They are our sisters. In this, we know they are strong and beautiful, absolutely deserving of every opportunity we ourselves have. 

{This post is a part of a sponsored awareness program that seeks to help women and girls everywhere live healthy lives wherein they are protected, respected, educated and empowered to reach their potential. Visit www.togetherforwomen.org.}

UNICEF’s End Trafficking Project

#endtrafficking

January is Human Trafficking Awareness Month. (We’ll have some awesome opportunity’s to be involved through Exodus Road and upcoming guest posts by university students who attended Passion 2013.)

 

Today, Global Team of 200 shares UNICEF’s End Trafficking Project.

 

An estimated 5.5 million children are victims of trafficking, an illegal enterprise that generates an estimated $32 billion in yearly profits.

Did you know? Human trafficking cases have been reported in every state in the United States. Rates are particularly high in California, Texas, Florida, and New York.

 

BELIEVE in ZERO exploited children. I don’t think our minds can truly understand what these children endure. We have a responsibility to get involved and speak for those that can’t speak for themselves.

Watch the new documentary film Not My Life 

not my life

The Exodus Road

exodus road banner

About Proximity has joined The Exodus Road Blogging Team. I am so excited about this opportunity. Today, I will introduce you to their organization and courageous work.

  • 27 million modern day slaves
  • Every 60 seconds, a child is sold for sex worldwide
  • Human trafficking is the 3rd largest global industry, behind drugs and guns

The Exodus Road seeks to empower the rescue of victims of sexual slavery. They operate primarily out of Southeast Asia and have rescued 600 victims and prosecuted 350 legal cases.

 

Sarah’s Story     By: Laura Parker 

“We met Sarah in a brothel in Cambodia.

There was a line of prostitutes behind a glass wall, a fishbowl they call it. They were sitting on high bar stools, with heavy make-up and short skirts, numbers pinned to their shoulders, displayed for the customers on the other side of the glass.

She was 15 and had been sold by her mother in a neighboring country several days before to work off a debt which her mother owed.

The following day, our investigator returned to visit Sarah in the brothel, just blocks away from a crowded local market. She scribbled a note, “Please Rescue Me,” on a bill and slipped it to him.

After weeks of waiting, Sarah’s door was kicked in. The note she scribbled to the investigator on a piece of currency which said, “Please rescue me,” finally got answered.

And while it did require more time, money, and manpower than first assumed, the team pursued Sarah’s freedom with a tenacity that inspires us every time we read the investigative report. They remind us that there are brave men and women on the front lines who live the belief that child slavery is unacceptable.”  – Laura Parker, The Exodus Road

 

Follow The Exodus Road on facebook and twitter.

We have an awesome opportunity to make a difference in the lives of those who are hurting through this new partnership with The Exodus Road. Our voices can combine with others to speak for justice.

 

Activist Somaly Mam’s book is a great testament of the hope that can be provided through rescue.

“I strongly believe that love is the answer and that it can mend even the deepest unseen wounds. Love can heal, love can console, love can strengthen, and yes, love can make change.”
― Somaly MamThe Road of Lost Innocence: The True Story of a Cambodian Heroine  

somaly mann

The Proximity Thing

I love to write, I have a story, one of the chapters is called about proximity.

I think about these words often. I want to place myself in the proximity of renewal. I often feel very small, but I know that my life has meaning if I am giving hope to other lives.

A number of years ago, I read the book, God’s Politics, by Jim Wallis. I loved the concepts of bipartisanship he wrote of in his work.

A couple of weeks ago, I picked the book back up. I found this passage…

“Jesus is assuming the social location of his followers will always put them in close proximity to the poor and easily able to reach out to them.”

I wonder if years ago, this sentence settled into my spirit and took up residence there.

God asks more of us. He asks for our proximity, our presence, all of who we are.

I remain committed to aligning everything on this blog to help encourage that journey.