Adults Helping Kids

Thursday, December 17, 2015


The man who feeds the developing world’s children from a garden shed

A conversation with an Italian priest launched Mary’s Meals, a remarkable project that today feeds nearly one million in schools across four continents

school meals charity worldwide

Friday, November 20, 2015


The Bureau of Investigative Journalism, based on extensive research in mid-2011, claims that at least 385 civilians were among the dead, including more than 160 children.[4] In July 2009,Brookings Institution released a report stating that in the United States-led drone attacks in Pakistan, ten civilians died for every militant killed.[5][6] S. Azmat Hassan, a former ambassador of Pakistan, said in July 2009 that American UAV attacks were turning Pakistani opinion against the United States and that 35 or 40 such attacks only killed 8 or 9 top al-Qaeda operatives.[7]
Although it may never be known how many civilians have died as a result of U.S. UAV strikes in Pakistan, there are estimates of hundreds or thousands of innocent bystanders who have perished in such attacks.[8] Pakistani authorities released statistics stating that between 1 January 2009 and 31 December 2009, U.S. RQ-1 Predator and RQ-9 Reaper UAV strikes have killed over 700 innocent civilians. The website PakistanBodyCount.Org (by Zeeshan-ul-hassan Usmani, a Fulbright Scholar at the Florida Institute of Technology) shows 1,065 civilian deaths between June 2004 and 30 January 2010 and tallies 103 UAV strikes carried out by the United States.[9]

Sunday, November 8, 2015


A girl holds on to a fence at a transit camp housing migrants and refugees in Slavonski Brod on Nov. 4. Canada has good record and reputation for human rights and should show leadership in such international issues as the refugee crises, columnist Farid Rohani writes.

We need to set a better example for our kids - and the world

A girl holds on to a fence at a transit camp housing migrants and refugees in Slavonski Brod on Nov. 4. Canada has good record and reputation for human rights and should show leadership in such international issues as the refugee crises, columnist Farid Rohani writes.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Global Missing Children's Network

The Global Missing Children's Network is a multilingual database featuring photos of and information about missing children from around the world. It was launched in 1998 as a joint program of the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children® and International Centre for Missing & Exploited Children®.

Photos are one of the most effective tools in the search for missing children. Rapidly distributing a child's photo can make the difference between a fast recovery and prolonged search.


Friday, October 2, 2015


Three years ago, Malala Yousafzai was targeted for her outspoken support of girls’ education. But not even a gun could silence her. In fact, it made her voice ring louder. Since her brush with death, Malala has made it her life’s purpose to advocate for the equal rights of all children and was recently the subject of the documentary He Named Me Malala, by Academy Award-winning filmmaker Davis Guggenheim.

Free The Children is proud to have welcomed Malala in Kenya on a ME to WE Trip where she spent several days speaking to girls about their passion for education at Kisaruni All Girls Secondary School. For many young girls, accessing education is about having the opportunity to reach their full potential as leaders and making a meaningful difference in the world.

Marcella Sang, a Kisaruni graduate and aspiring journalist, shares Malala’s belief in the power of education: “This school has changed my life completely. I have gained leadership skills and I have excelled in academics. When I started Kisaruni, I was shy and not able to address people in public. That’s changed—I have a voice now.”

Join us in celebrating the power of education and help support Free The Children’s education program overseas.

Celebrating the Power of Education

Wednesday, September 30, 2015


One of the world’s biggest producers and exporters of cotton is Uzbekistan where the repressive Government uses a system of forced labour to produce cotton on a massive scale.

For decades, the government of Uzbekistan, under President Islam Karimov, has forced adults and children as young as 10 to pick cotton under harsh conditions each harvest season

Although the younger children are no longer mobilised in large numbers, local administrations routinely send secondary students (15-17-year-olds) to the fields in some districts.

Uzbekistan is one of the largest producers and exporters of cotton in the world, generating an estimated US$1 billion annually through the export of around 850,000 tonnes of cotton every year. Despite these profits, those ordered to pick the cotton remain impoverished as workers are paid little, if anything.

Farmers are ordered to grow cotton or they risk financial penalties or removal from the land they farm.

Each September the cotton harvest begins. Uzbek citizens such as teachers and doctors are forced out of their regular jobs to spend weeks in the fields picking cotton, often in hazardous conditions and without basic equipment.

Each citizen is given a daily quota. Those who fail to meet their targets, or who pick a low quality crop, are reportedly punished by detention, risk losing their jobs or face harassment from employers or the government.

The work is dangerous, people can be left exhausted, suffer from ill-health and malnutrition after weeks of arduous labour. Those working on remote cotton farms are forced to stay in makeshift dormitories in poor conditions with insufficient food and drinking water.
The government of Uzbekistan harass, intimidate and repress citizens who attempt to monitor the cotton harvest.

Not only those sent out to the fields are affected. Businesses are forced to contribute financially if they want to stay open during harvest time. The provision of public services such as healthcare and education is also severely affected during the harvest.

Despite widespread knowledge of these abuses, textile traders and companies have been complicit by buying and selling Uzbek cotton. And although many companies have pledged not to knowingly use Uzbek cotton, it still ends up in the global supply chains and in a lot of finished products. Many governments and international bodies continue to promote trade with Uzbekistan without regard to ongoing human rights abuses.

This is the evil and murderous leader of this little known country.

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Saturday, September 26, 2015


War affects children in all the ways it affects adults, but also in different ways. First, children are dependent on the care, empathy, and attention of adults who love them. Their attachments are frequently disrupted in times of war, due to the loss of parents, extreme preoccupation of parents in protecting and finding subsistence for the family, and emotional unavailability of depressed or distracted parents. The child may be in substitute care with someone who cares for him or her only slightly – relatives or an orphanage. A certain proportion of war-affected children lose all adult protection – “unaccompanied children,” as they are known in refugee situations.
Second, impacts in childhood may adversely affect the life trajectory of children far more than adults. Consider children who lose the opportunity for education during war, children who are forced to move into refugee or displaced person camps, where they wait for years in miserable circumstances for normal life to resume, if it ever does. Consider a child disabled in war; they may, in addition to loss of a limb, sight, or cognitive capacity, lose the opportunity of schooling and of a social life. A girl who is raped may be marginalized by her society and lose the opportunity for marriage. Long after the war has ended, these lives will never attain the potential they had before the impact of war.
Copyright © 2006 by the Croatian Medical Journal. All rights reserved.
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Copyright © 2006 by the Croatian Medical Journal. All rights reserved.

This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Hunger and Children

66 million primary school-age children attend classes hungry across the developing world, with 23 million in Africa alone.

Sunday, April 26, 2015


Fifteen years ago a highly paid engineer in the Philippines gave up his job to live in a bamboo hut in western Thailand. He is now known as “Dada” to the 40 orphans he takes care of at Baan Dada in Huay Ma Lai, near Myanmar.
Baan means “house” in Thai and Dada is Sanskrit for “brother.” For the past three years, small volunteer groups have visited his home deep in the woods. It’s part of the Neo-Humanist Foundation and is referred to officially as Ananda Vidyadharma

Where is it?
The nearest landmark on a map is the Three Pagoda Pass, which is now a shrine commemorating an attempt by the Japanese tried to build a railway from Singapore to India.

This was the area where it was to have crossed from Thailand to Burma (now Myanmar). Baan Dada is about 45 minutes away from this in a town so small it’s not on any maps.

The nearest well known city between Baan Dada and Bangkok is Kanchanaburi (kahn chan a buu D). Even if you’ve never heard of the city itself, you’ve heard of one of its landmarks, the bridge over the River Kwai.

If you would like to help out with this wonderful story, just log into and make a contribution.

A volunteering stint is on my bucket list for next year.

Monday, April 20, 2015

Thursday, April 16, 2015


I have been provided some feedback from people who say this blog is too negative. Well, gee. I guess stories about starving and marginalized children are kind of negative. Anyway, just to lighten things up I offer the following;

Sunday, April 12, 2015


My dream on developing the Greanwold brand has always had one main focus. To generate revenue that will flow to the Greanwold Foundation for Kids Worldwide. As with any project, there are investors who expect a return on their investment, overheads to be covered, loans to be paid back and funds to be put aside for growth.

These taken into account, the balance of revenues will go to the foundation. The foundation will be managed by Christy Ellynby, the originator of the little character that became Greanwold. Christy lives in New Zealand and has a lifetime of experience, both work and personal with children and families. Christy will work in conjunction with a board of directors, yet to be named.

How did the idea for the foundation come about? 

Some years ago, my wife and I traveled to several third world countries. In the course of our travels, we came across a number of children living in dire poverty with little chance of an education, no medical care and an uncertain future. One small boy, I would say around the age of 10, was supporting his family by acting as an unofficial guide at the Angkor Wat complex in Cambodia. His father was injured, he had several younger siblings and lived in a 3 room, thatched roof, for the lack of a better word, shack. 

He asked for $5 to act as our guide but said he had to be careful as the tourist police would take his money and throw him out of Angkor Wat complex if he was caught. We gave him $10 that we later found out was the cost of one month schooling in Cambodia. No free education there.  The average annual income is USD$950.

His English was excellent and had been learned from tourists he guided for. He could also speak some French, German, Spanish and Japanese, all learned from tourists. An amazing little guy.

This was just one incident. There were many others. 

Another introduction into the dire straights of many of the world's poorest children was through a young lady I met several years ago who worked as a volunteer at an orphanage in Thailand at the border of Myanmar at the Baan Dada orphanage.

Most of the children at the orphanage come across the border from Myanmar, either orphaned after losing their parents through the brutality of the military regime or were sent across the border because their parents could not longer afford to look after them. The orphanage relies solely on donations from individuals and the Neo Humanist Foundation.

If you are interested on knowing more, please email me. I would be happy to provide further information.

If you would like to help getting Greanwold off the ground, please click on the Greanwold on Kickstarter image at the top of the page. You will be supporting children, far less fortunate than your own. Thanks.

Thursday, April 2, 2015


I have received some comments advising me it is immoral to be raising financing for a project on the back of a foundation for children. My response to this criticism is as follows: 

My wife and I have traveled to a number of third world countries and have seen the effects of poverty on families, particularly children.  Over the years, we have contributed to charities for children, supported a child from age 3 to teenage years in a 3rd world country through an international organisation, have raised money for an orphanage in Thailand ( and created from scratch, a sailing program for children at a local yacht club that we ran for 8 years where many children from low income families were taught to sail at no cost. 

The idea for a children's character came to me many years ago as a way of providing ongoing income to a foundation that would have a board of directors, independent of the business,  distributing the foundation funds to worthy causes that benefit children, anywhere in the world.

As in any business, overheads have to be covered, shareholders are entitled to a return on their money and there has to be funds set aside for company growth. In this regard, my pledge to persons who support Greanwold's World either through our Kickstarter program or as investors is; I will ensure that it is children who will mainly benefit from Greanwold. Once we are up and running, a portion of every membership dollar, a portion of every Greanwold item sold and a healthy portion of the eventual sale of the Greanwold brand will go to the foundation.

I hope this clarifies matters.

Even though it has taken a long time for Greanwold to develop some traction, in my world, persistence pays off. Thomas Edison got it right. 

Five percent of the people think; 
ten percent of the people think they think; 
and the other eighty-five percent would rather die than think.” 
― Thomas A. Edison

Please, comments gratefully accepted.

Sunday, March 29, 2015


There is something deeply wrong in British Columbia and with our government that thousands of children are hungry and school districts are forced to beg private donors for food on their behalf.

The Vancouver school district feeds breakfast and lunch to 5,000 elementary and secondary school children every day. But it says there are another 2,000 who are going hungry. It would cost $1.7 million to feed those 2,000 kids. It’s money the district doesn't have.

How many kids in other school districts are hungry and going unfed is an open question because most others haven’t done a detailed school-by-school analysis as Vancouver has. But it’s definitely not just a Vancouver problem.One in five B.C. children is growing up in poverty, according to 2012 Statistics Canada data. That’s 169,240 children.

And, while there are pockets of extreme poverty in Vancouver, the Central Coast Regional District has the highest rate with 54.8 per cent of children living in low-income families.Hungry adults can be hard to identify because they often try to hide it.

But children? They’re visible, especially to teachers.

Many are young enough not to be ashamed to say that they’re hungry and they’ve had no breakfast and there’s no food for lunch.But even if they don’t, their hunger shows up in other ways: poor marks, the inability to focus, the anger and frustration that are manifest when the body screams out for nourishment. The Vancouver school district spends $4.4 million on food programs. Of that, the $300,000 for breakfast programs already comes from by private donations either directly or through charities like The Vancouver Sun’s Adopt-a-School.
The provincial government provides $2.4 million in Community Links grants for lunch programs, while parents who can afford it provide another $1.7 million.Yet it’s clearly not enough if 2,000 kids are still without food.

Canada is one of the few developed countries without a national poverty reduction program. So, as poverty in Canada has increased, it’s charity — not taxes — that has filled the gaps.
Before 1981, there were no food banks in Canada. Since then, their use has risen exponentially. Since 2008, the number of British Columbians using food banks has increased by 25 per cent since 2008.

Of the 97,000 B.C. citizens reliant on food banks, one-third are children.


Friday, March 13, 2015


1.     With a quality education, children will get the knowledge and life skills they need to realize their full potential. Education is essential in creating change in a child’s life. Plan helps by training teachers, building new schools and breaking down barriers that prevent many children, and girls in particular, from attending school.

2.     Access to health care is essential. Plan helps communities build health clinics, train health care workers and invest in equipment and medicine so children can grow up healthy and strong.

3.     Water and sanitation are essential for every child’s survival. Every year, Plan helps communities build school latrines, community water points and helps to establish organizations to ensure the continued management and maintenance of water points.

4.     Plan works to overcome poverty by helping communities around the world gain the economic security they need to thrive. Plan is training people living in poverty to acquire the skills and knowledge they need to secure a livelihood, and support their families.

5.     Plan helps children learn their rights and take active roles within their community. Child participation helps children engage in citizenship, express their views and make decisions that will shape their future and influence the people around them.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Canadian Politicians (Fat Cats) Forgotten Promise to Canadian Children in poverty

TORONTO – A new report finds a lack of progress in reducing child poverty in Canada, despite a commitment from members of Parliament more than two decades ago to eradicate child poverty by the year 2000.

Released Monday, the Campaign 2000 annual report release also marks five years after the entire House of Commons voted to develop an immediate plan to end poverty for all in Canada.

 25 years ago this week, in the House of Commons, MPs agreed unanimously to try to eradicate child poverty by the year 2000. Today, there are roughly the same amount of kids living below the poverty line. ‘There’s no question we failed': MPs commitment to end poverty is 25 years old

“More children and their families live in poverty as of 2014 than they did when the House of Commons unanimously resolved to end child poverty more than 25 years ago,” read the report.

The report gathered Statistics Canada tax-filer data and found that child and family poverty has increased to 1,331,530 children in 2014 from 1,066,150 children in 1989.

While public policies such as the Canada Child Tax Benefit/ National Child Benefit Supplement and the Child Disability Benefit have made an impact to families, the report said those policies do not make a “big enough difference to dial down the child poverty rate substantially or to sustain less child poverty.”