In the recent past, the planet earth has been in peril and this can be mainly attributed to the activity of mankind. In order to survive, mankind has explored the whole earth and made a discovery of so much natural endowments and treasures in this planet. Man has continually exploited the natural endowments indiscriminately as if there is no tomorrow generation. He has done this in attempt to satisfy his ever increasing demand for the environmental goods and services.
This has led to global threats to the existence of humanity.
The current issues of global concern include the currently most spoken climatic change and global warming, over population which has caused pressure on the limited and scanty environmental provisions in kind and services, natural disasters such as mass epidemic threats in the likes of human and livestock killer diseases, a danger of depletion of the non renewable resources especially the oil, forests, water and biodiversity.
The western countries which are economically termed as the first world countries have also showed concern over the economic stagnation and the poor living conditions in Africa and other developing and under developed economies of the world.
Other issues of global concern include the diminishing demographic trends in the western developed countries and the concept of religious extremism and radicalisation that has recently been linked to terrorist attacks all over the world.
Any phenomenon that is a threat to life on the earth is a concern to all people living in the world, hence global issues.
There is need for a joint effort from all corners of the world to solve the problems and threats facing the existence of humans. Since the genesis of problems and threats can be attributed to the key anthropological factor, similar forces but aimed towards reversing the situation need to come from man.
Governments, private sector, individuals, societies, communities and non governmental organizations (NGOs) have tried to solve the problems. This paper is going to present the potential of a well focused non governmental organization. It is going to reveal how World Vision International (WVI), an NGO which is currently the largest Christian humanitarian assistance agency has taken an holistic approach towards mitigation and prevention of the current threats facing human life on planet earth.
This organisation has an elaborate administrative structure and the most admirable aspect of its operations is it is using the bottom – up – approach , is working with all kinds of people world over irrespective of race and religion despite its strong Christian ties and core values. It works in a wide geographical extent ranging from the major cities’ vicinity and suburbs to extremely remote parts of Africa and world, where you can sometimes find it the only humanitarian organization working in those regions.
The main business include working in the third world countries to improve the lives of communities through relief programs , capacity building and community development mainly through the use of participatory approaches and incentives like the food – for – work initiatives. It also addresses community health issues and as a result, it has initiated health campaign programs all over the world to fight potential mass epidemic illnesses especially malaria and diarrhoea.
Other global issues it has attempted to solve as a necessity to fulfill its holistic problem solving approach, though not directly, include addressing threats of resource depletion, conservation to reverse climatic change, religion, HIV and AIDS in Africa which it has extensively dealt with and , though at a light note, the negative population trend in the western counties. World vision is basically committed to serve and empower the poor, the orphaned and women as a way of its contribution towards achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) on the global scope.
For proper internalization of the global business fitness concept, the following global business framework will be used to illustrate the key components of the concept. The second diagram is an illustration of the key focus points that have been addresses by World Vision International. Brief history of the Organization (WVI) WVI which is a Christian humanitarian crisis management organisation ensures that families and societies all over the world become free from poverty as well as social injustice.
To address children needs during crisis, WVI developed child sponsorship program in Korea in the year 1953 and expanded in to Asia, South America, Africa, E. Europe and the Middle East. the main source of funds for this development agency in donations from individuals and other donor agencies like the USAID, IMF, the World Bank among others (Hunter,2001). It uses these donations to make poor communities access clean potable water, quality food, education facilities, medical care and opportunities to develop economically.
In the 1960s, World Vision began its relief program all over the world. It delivered food, medical supplies and clothing to those survived the disasters. The organization then began sourcing for clothing and other basic necessities from well wishers and corporations to help in trying to meet the immediate requirements for children and affected families. Through out the following decade up to 1970s the volume of donations continued to grow and more thousands of children could be accessed.
The need to work with the entire community but not with the children only was realised during this period. As a result, world vision started vocational training and agricultural extension services and on farm training programs for families who benefited from its sponsorship program and families started self sustainance through informed farming systems and micro enterprises This aim of achieving self sustainance at the family level evolved to form the current World Vision’s community development activities. Sustainable development is the core thing towards getting a lasting hope.
In the following decade of 1980s, there occurred a very severe drought which led to so much financial assistance to humanitarian efforts in this disaster. World Vision was very much involved in providing food and medical services to save the lives of thousands of people who were slowly agonizing to death due to starvation. After the threatening crisis subsided, this organization set up basis for lasting solution to any future crisis. Other activities during this decade include sinking of bore holes and up to today, this is the entry point for World Vision in to a community before other transformational activities can take place.
In the past decade of 1990s, the issue of HIV was a real threat and the case of Uganda, a country in Africa was most serious with so many people dying of this pandemic and very many children were orphaned by this disease. World Vision came in to assistance and after wards extended the efforts to other African countries. In the year 200, the Hope Initiative was launched to address the most serious threat to humanity in the 21st century, HIV and AIDS. Organizational Information
World Vision is a multi- national partnership made of Christians with a main mission to follow in faith and spirit, the Savior Jesus Christ in working together with the poor and those in oppression, to promote the transformation of humans , seek justice for all and also to bear witnesses to the gospel of God’s Kingdom. the organization and therefore its members are committed to integrated commitment to Emergency relief, Sustainable and transformational development , justice for all, Making of strategic Initiatives, mobilization and creation of public awareness and remaining to be witnesses to Christ Jesus.
The core values of this organization are : a)They are Christians, where by they acknowledge one God, the Holy trinity, seek to be followers of Jesus in his identification with those who are poor, powerless, those in oppression, living in marginal areas, in his non discriminated love, in his spirit of sharing and his dignity and a sense of equality between men and women.
b)Commitment to to the service of the poor, where they believe they have been called to serve the needy of this earth, to bring relieve to those who are suffering, and promoting the positive change of their well being, standing together to search justice and truth, understanding the situation of the poor and join hands in working with them. c) The hold value to people, where by based on the Christian belief of creation by one God, all people were created equal and are equal before God’s eyes. d) They are stewards, on the believe that resourced they have are not their own but entrusted to them by God and they should share.
They care for Gods creation, protect and protect the environment. They work towards ecological sustainability. e)They are partners and form partnership with the donor agencies, with other development agencies and also the poor who are their main target. f) They are also responsive to disasters and other catastrophes that are a threat to life. They readily take intelligent risks and are quick in making a responsive act. They recognize the role of the destitute even in the middle of a catastrophe. They also respond to economic constraints and social injustices, and also in situations that require development in the long term.
World vision addresses ‘Third World’ Challenges The developing nations have been faced with a big challenge of feeding their populations. People have diet of hunger or maladies that are associated with malnutrition. With the continued worsening in the global climate, agricultural production has greatly reduced. This can be associated with change of rainfall patterns, the inadequate amounts of precipitation and erratic rainfall patterns that have led to very low crop yields. Initially, this was an issue in Africa, but of late the issue of food crisis has became a whole world concern.
The prices have become very volatile in the last couple of month. Amid the quickly rising food prices, pronounced malnutrition especially among the children, violent unrest and continued food shortage, the number of people receiving relief food assistance from World Vision have dropped by over one and a half million. Since it has been predicted that the current food crisis may last for the next two years, World Vision feels that this is too long a period for the several millions of children below the age of five years who require abundant and sufficient nutrition levels for proper physical development.
Today, World Vision Provides about four hundred and fifty thousand metric tones of food in about thirty countries. The current trend in global food prices is a big draw back to the World Vision’s aim of preventing malnutrition among the children in their programs and from communities with which they partner. This price shifts on top of impacting World Vision’s ability to respond well to child malnutrition has further led to the total number of people, both children and adults in need.
There has also been the problem emerging from donor nations that have not yet fulfilled their pledges and commitments they made to the World Food Programme. World Vision has in the short term set goals to prevent death as a result of starvation and also to improve the quality of nutrition in its targeted areas of operations known to it as the Area Development Programs (ADPs). In the World Vision’s long term plan is to set up a community that is resilient of safe and healthy youngsters through increased food and nutritional security and also by reducing the risks of a disaster strike.
World Vision and Global warming During the World Economic Forum held in Davos, the World Vision president Dean Hirsch challenged the world leaders who attended this meeting to direct their resources and their influence to the poor people of the society. In a climatic change session, the World Vision president emphasized that people who are poor have not been involved in the response towards the world climate change, yet they are the most vulnerable to the negative impacts of climatic change (Morgan,2003).
Since 1980, disasters whose root cause is related to weather and climate has risen by about fifty percent. World Vision has responded to key disasters in about sixty four countries in the year 2007, by quick provision of basic human needs among them the food, shelter, water and clothes to the people involved in the disasters. In each fiscal year, World Vision sets aside over six million US dollars for any urgent disaster response that may arise. In emergencies that are large scale in nature, allocations are up to one hundredd US dollars to help in saving lives (Fourie,2006).
The fund raising strategy in this organization is very smart such that it can mobilize even larger funding in a few hours time in case a major disaster has occurred. The Tsunami disaster which was an effect of global warming occurred on the 26th December, 2004. An earthquake of a magnitude of 9. 0 occurred on the ocean floor in the Indonesian coast and a deadly tsunami was triggered. Over two thundered lives were claimed by the fierce high waves that affected about nine countries while livelihoods and homes of another about one and a half million people were destroyed by the tsunami phenomenon (Gore,2006).
Australia World Vision Australia was one of the first humanitarian agencies to respond to this natural disaster resulting from indirect influence of climatic change and global warming. Emergency relief in the form of clothing, clean drinking water, medicine, foodstuffs and shelter were brought to these people who were affected by the disaster. World Vision helped in meeting the immediate requirements of those who survived the tragedy and currently, the organization has turned to address the long term development of the people’s needs who lost all their property (Graham, 2004).
The programs that have been initiated now address the public health requirements, the recovery of the economy, infrastructural reconstruction and protection of children who are always at the centre of any World Vision’s activity. Aceh province in Indonesia before the disaster was thriving very well with a population of over three hundred and fifty thousand people. After the disaster, the Banda Aceh city in this province of Indonesia was like the ruins left after a blast of an atomic bomb, because the city was levelled when the tsunami People were left dead and buried in the mud and rock debris.
This province was one of the most negatively affected cities in Indonesia Property that was destroyed ranged from tall houses, cars, glass, cement stores, boats at the shore line among others (Lincoln,2000). The damage extended about five kilometres inland from the coast line and left about one hundred and sixty nine thousand people dead or missing. Losses in agricultural sector especially crops and livestock were huge and difficult to estimate because unknown number of cattle heads, goats and sheep were drawn by the ferocious water. Within two days, World Vision emergency relief had reached the affected.
This organization gave foodstuffs to about fourty thousand people, provided tarpaulins to about fifty thousand people and gave temporary shelter in form of tents to about two thousand families. World Vision installed water and sanitation amenities so that the more than seventeen thousand people who lived in the tents did not get diseases due to the contaminated water (McNail,1998). This disaster also left many children traumatised and in response, programs to reverse this conditions among the little angels. One year after the tsunami catastrophe, World Vision and other development agencies had done several activities.
With assistance from the United Nations Food Programme, the World Vision international gave out food stuffs such as rice, fortified noodles, fish that was canned, cooking vegetable oil and also non food commodities such as clothes, bathing soaps, tooth paste, house hold kits, fishing lines among others. World Vision also put on transitional shelter using local work force , built also community centers using the same work force from the community, set aside play areas for the children, provided clean potable water to the homeless while permanent residence for the people is even now going on, courtesy of World Vision.
The about twenty six spaces set aside for the children’s recreation saw about three thousand and six hundred children utilise the facility which enabled the adult family members to keep focus on rebuilding and recollecting their prior lifestyles without much a worry about the children’s safety. In these children friendly sites, the children are also taught on the role they should play in reconstructing and rebuilding their damaged communities.
World Vision also responded by building about seventeen schools, re- equipping another one hundred and twenty five schools with study materials like reading books, school uniforms, classroom furniture , exercise books and it is estimated that about twenty five thousand students were able to return to their normal study routines and school education in the quickest time possible. World Vision donated up to twelve ambulances , two hundred and fifty hospital beds, key equipment for medical facilities as well as providing pharmaceuticals to the hospitals in this most affected province of Indonesia (Stathakis,1997).
It also set up a mobile health clinic facility to assist in medical service provision to the people who were affected and also for any future occurrence of a similar disaster. The restoration of economic independence of the Indonesian people who were affected has been a very significant part of development over the last one year (Columbus,2007). First, World Vision has employed members of the affected community in the activities like removing debris , assisting in the non technical duties in the water and sanitation projects and also in extension agricultural initiatives that are aimed at restoring livelihoods of the community.
World Vision and HIV/AIDS in Africa World statistics indicate that over fifteen million children in the world have been rendered orphans the clamation of their parent’s lives to HIV and AIDS. The impacts of this killer disease has been felt across all social classes ans has led to stagnant economic development of the third world economies chiefly because allocations that could be used for infrastructural and other forms of national developments have been diverted to programs set to address the HIV and AIDS pandemic.
The disease has deprived nations of their workforce, has led to the reduction of agricultural production, has led to the slow death of loved ones and has left so many people either orphaned or widowed. Much of the countries budget has been allocated for the purchase of ARTs and treating diseases that come along with HIV like tuberculosis, instead of using it to address the historically known killer diseases like malaria which is even today, the most killer disease in the entire world (Kofas,1999).
World Vision in response to this disaster has initiated a global HIV and AIDS program running under the name Hope Initiative. This initiative is one of its own kind of campaign set up to address the rising needs of children, women, families and communities which have been negatively affected by the global pandemic of HIV and AIDS. The orphans and other vulnerable persons (OVCs) and widows as a result of HIV and AIDS in America have been taken care by other Americans, thanks to World Vision in the United States (Candilis,2004).
Through this Hope Initiative, World Vision International has and is still helping to turn the high wave against HIV and AIDS in the whole world. Often, orphans and vulnerable children (the OVCs) have limited access to to sufficient food, proper medical care, quality education and other basic necessities They also under go abuse and neglect ion in the villages and have been observed to be even the ones who take care of their ailing parents and watch them even as they die!
These orphans and vulnerable children have been taking the responsibility of looking after their young siblings. World Vision and Resource Depletion (water and deforestation) The world reserves for natural resources are in danger of depletion. World Vision has responded to this threat but has been specific to the water element of it. This has been necessitated by the fact that some of the projects that are set up by World Vision involve extraction of underground water to serve the communities.
According to the United Nations estimates, each person should at least be accessible to about twenty litres per day (Naikiwin,2005). Ironically, the poor are paying more for water than the rich are doing. Due to reduced rainfall and the ever increasing population, there is a strain on the current water amounts (Philip,2001). To ensure sustainable supply of water from the bore holes that they sink, World Vision has gone further to mobilize communities to conserve catchment areas by encouraging them to plant trees, avoid overstocking and by controlling soil erosion.
This has led to increased underground water reserves (Pius,2005). Another threat to the world’s environment is the rampant cutting down of trees. The increased prices for petroleum fuels and natural cooking gas has turned rural communities to heavily use the natural vegetation at their proposal. World Vision has used its community development motivators to educate communities about dangers of deforestation and people now have established wood lots to supply wood fuel World Vision and Religious Extremism
World Vision is not in support of any religious extremism and its services are not bound to religion although. For example, the suicide bombers who leave people suffering and others dead are highly condemned in World Vision because the act is not in line their Christian values. The integrated health approach has led to community education of family planning and birth control, which despite being resisted by several communities in Africa has resulted to good healthy population.
World Vision has adjusted to the new business paradigm that or a model that incorporates susutainability, justice with the fulfilment of presence of humans on the planet, they way spirituality is being viewed, the virtues of sharing and caring and also global connectiness. Decision making in this organisation is by global and local leaders who are ethical, honest and have integrity, have respect to the people they serve and understand their roles in shaping the future of humanity and the planet at large.
As an organization, they advocate for ressponsible management of natural resources and condemn activities that lead to negative impacts on the planet. As the new global business requires, World Vision have an admirable approach in handling nations and societies because the employees have a basic understanding of individuals basic human rights, embrace the spirit of team work in problem solving, support parity in resources distribution and are against any form of exploitation to both people and resources. Conclusion
World Vision International fits very well in the current global business because it addresses most of global business issues. The way it has adjusted to the new business paradigm , its organization, and the process of decision making is the class of a global business paradgim.
References Candilis S 2004, The Green house century, Praeger. New York. Columbus N 2007, Governance and HIV/AIDS, Oxford press, Oxford. Fourie P 2006, African Economy and HIV/AIDS, Twentieth Century Fund, New York. Gore A 2006, Global Warming truth,The Pennsylvania State Univ. Press, University Park.
Graham H 2004, World Vision and Disasters of the World, MacMillan, New York. Hunter S 2001, African Epidemics, Macmillan, New York. Kofas J 1999, Intervention and underdevelopment, . Greece during the Cold War, Lincoln F 2000, United States’ Aid to Africa, Cambridge Univ. Press, Cambridge. Stathakis G 1997, Approaches to HIV Pandemic, Oxford Press, Oxford. McNeil W 1998, African Poverty, Power and Prestige, Duke Univ. Press,London. Morgan S 2003, AIDS in African Context, Duke University Press, London. Naikiwn A 2005, Community Health in Africa, Rutledge, New York.
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