Today is Giving Tuesday and I wanted to introduce a small Canadian relief organization called FAR you probably have never heard of. Yet their work in Darfur has been nominated for the UN’s Global Project Prize. I only know about them because my good friend was their country director in Sudan for the last couple of years. FAR is committed to sustainable development and currently has projects in water and sanitation, economic development, food security, peace and conflict transformation, emergency relief, and health. FAR began in Sudan in 1984. Today they are one of the most respected development organizations in the country. They currently have offices in Kosti, South Kordofan and West Darfur, and employ approximately one hundred staff.
I have been interested in relief organizations for a while, but it has been enlightening talking to my friend about criterias that make a good organization. One of them is how much money actually goes to the people that need it and how much is spend on advertising and administration. My friend assures me that if you donate to FAR it actually goes to the people of Sudan. Sudan is a very closed Islamic country, suspicious of any Western aid. In the last year they have kicked most expats out the country. Yet FAR is still there. A good agency walks a tight line between employing locals yet maintaining their integrity and ethical standards. This is not easy in a country with corruption and tribal biases. Lastly FAR is openly Christian yet works well with its Muslim employees, not forcing their faith on them but not hiding it either, as some do in Muslim countries.
So if you wonder how you can make a difference in Sudan, consider giving to FAR.
Have a lovely day,