A baby born into devastation

Sometimes the weight of this world seems too much to bear. With our constant stream of videos, news and images from the sufferings of our fellow people across the world, we’ve become numb to the realities of their trials. Of their dire situation.

We skim over our newsfeed and may click on an article or simply choose to ignore it, or it might get lost in between the tired old story of Kim Kardashian going nude or Trump’s latest (horrifying) antics.

After having seen one graphic video or image after another we become so devastated by them that we actually become immobilised. What can we do? What can I actually do, sitting here in my comfortable home, on my couch, in absolute safety half way across the other side of the world? Do I care enough to do anything?

We might share a news story on our Facebook feeds and feel better about ourselves. We might emphatically comment or tweet about the injustice of the world, like those mothers, fathers and children shivering in the bitter cold with nothing but flimsy sheets of fabric as their ‘shelter’ in swamps of muddy land would benefit from our social media vigilante-ism.

And sometimes we see things that are so unbelievable, so incredibly sobering, so heart crushingly saddening that we can’t wipe those images from our minds, no matter how much we try to distract ourselves with the luxuries of our first world lives.

It is true that when one becomes a mother, her sense of compassion and mercy is heightened. She is bewildered at the thought of any child or baby suffering. She aches for them, because in her own hands is the most fragile form of life, entrusted for some unfathomable reason to her- “Here. Take this life and build it. Mould it. Mould it with love and care. Protect her/him with everything in your power.”

And in a first world country that is relatively easy, despite the constant fears and anxieties that plague us about the world our children have been born into.

They were not born at a half way point of utter desperation, with no hope of a future and no peace in the past. They did not have to be born in the muddy squalor and washed for the first time by cold water from a plastic bottle, held out to be cleaned of the stuff of life, remnants of a place where he was far safer. Brand new pink skin a stark contrast to the dreary backdrop.

321DB2AB00000578-3488892-A_mother_living_in_a_tent_in_a_refugee_camp_outside_the_Greek_to-a-14_1457792378824Image via Daily Mail

Here, here where we have everything, our children are born in sterile privacy with half a dozen medical professionals at their disposal. They are surrounded by white walls and people dressed in white, wrapped in blankets of white cotton and dressed in brand new clothes of pure white.

Their brand new pink skin is blurred by all this white.

They are washed in the pure waters of privilege. Traces of their first abode scrubbed away, because they have been welcomed to a place of utter safety.

What can we do in the face of such a magnanimous human catastrophe? Where babies are being born into devastating conditions? I know this is hardly the first baby born to such conditions. I know this.

I think the reality is that although not every single one of us can pack up and trek to the refugees to aid them, we can throw our support behind organisations who are doing the right thing, who are acting on the ground to make a positive and significant difference to their lives. Rather than wallow in despair of the unprecedented human catastrophe, we should be motivated to positive action by supporting these organisations, and also by actively seeking out and volunteering for local organisations that support refugees. We should be trying to make meaningful connections with refugees in our communities, to aid them in whatever way we can and by engaging in peaceful protest to get a firm message across to governments to support refugees.

Here are a few organisations to support:

  1. IHH Humanitarian Relief
  2. Al Imdaad
  3. Red Cross
  4. Doctors without Borders
  5. Asylum Seeker Resource Centre 

Featured Image Source.




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