Thursday, 23 October 2008

Government aid -but not for us

Our government can't afford to spend money on sea defences, on keeping village schools open, on medicines for cancer or on sufficient flood defences.

People who were flooded out of their homes last summer are still living in caravans with their families. Villages are falling into the sea. People are paying for medication privately. Mums are setting up their own schools because schooling for their children's needs is not available.

Some months you or I may be able to donate money to a homeless charity, a fund raising event or a gift for a special occasion. We wouldn't do those things so freely if that month we had too many bills, or were actually in debt.

Our government doesn't think like us. They give loads of money away even though they are in debt and even though there are things which need paying for here at home.

On this site I found that our government spent, in the year 2006 to 2007:
* £2.4 million to help the Caribbean islands weather the storms of climate change
* £150 million to get all Indian children into primary school
* £1 billion increase in spending on education in Africa
* £5 million to Zimbabwe for medicines and medical supplies
* £434 thousand for flood victims in Ghana
It's good to give help to others who are in need. You don't do it if your own family also need that money or are in debt.

There were 1119 entries on that dfid site. Entries showing how much our government gives away, of our money, which they take by compulsory tax then choose to send overseas.
Like:
* £35 million to Afghanistan [we are giving them £500 million over three years]
* £9 million this year, £18 million by 2010 aid to Burma

By the way, on 19 November 2007 it was World toilet day.
* £1.5 million to Tajikistan
* £1.2 million to Fairtrade over two years
* £2 million to help to increase the UK market for sustainably produced food from

Africa:
* We fund a soap opera in South Africa
* £7 million for tax reform in Bangladesh
* £3 million to support small businesses in Occupied Palestinian Territories
* £5.5 million for football tournaments and farm visits etc in developing
countries

The UK's Gross Public Expenditure on development in 06/07 was
7,487 million pounds - of our tax.

On the site, link they ask for your views.

- Helen C.

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