Good Suggestion from Germany for Tsunami Relief

In his New Year’s Eve address to the German nation, German Chancellor Gerhard Schröder (a Social Democrat) made an excellent suggestion for helping those nations afflicted by the tsunami. Developed, western nations who can afford to do so should each take responsibility for (or essentially adopt or sponsor) one of the countries hit by the catastrophe. Then, federal states or national departments of the country could take the responsibility for political subdivisions of the same level in the sponsored country; cities for cities, and schools for schools:

Schröder sagte in seiner Neujahrsansprache nach seinem vorab veröffentlichten Redetext: “Ich stelle mir vor, daß sich die großen Industrieländer für jeweils ein Land verantwortlich fühlen.” In Deutschland könnten dann die Bundesländer etwa die Patenschaft für Bezirke des betroffenen Landes übernehmen und deutsche Städte entsprechend für Städte in den Krisengebieten. Schulen in Deutschland könnten beim Wiederaufbau von Schulen helfen, die von den Flutwellen zerstört worden seien.

I like this because it has the potential of mobilizing the assistance of sponsoring countries in a more complete way so that more individuals can participate.

6 Responses to Good Suggestion from Germany for Tsunami Relief

  1. Anonymous says:

    I like it too, for the reasons you mention, and also because it begins to break down the overwhelming task of relief and rebuilding into pieces that individuals feel they could help with–I can’t get my mind around the whole cleanup project, but I could imagine mobilizing members of my childrens’ school community to adopt a single school in Sri Lanka, or something like that. 

    Posted by Kristine

  2. Anonymous says:

    It is not an idea without merit, however; the problem arises when you consider that the affected countries are of different sizes than the countries giving aid, they have different populations and governmental structures- further- how does it improve our ability to give aid to the victims? My perception of the size of the task at hand has little relation to the ability of the international community to rebuild the areas destroyed and care for the homeless and the sick and afflicted.  

    Posted by boyd

  3. Anonymous says:

    Boyd, the Chancellor’s comments took for granted that it would all be adminstered centrally by the UN. 

    Posted by john fowles

  4. Anonymous says:

    how does it improve our ability to provide aid? There is already an international organization developed to deal with the logistics of delivering aid. As to the different departments within the affected countries, I’m sure that the administrative elements of the department of education or the department of whatever in the affected countries are still viable as the countries were not completely destroyed and will be able to determine what to do as far as reconstruction. 

    Posted by boyd

  5. Anonymous says:

    Making aid personal often makes it mores successful. It also makes it endure longer.

    BTW, was looking at referring blogs and noted:

    Times & Seasons [11]
    Ethesis [10]

    Just hoping for a link back to my blog

    Posted by Stephen M (Ethesis)

  6. Anonymous says:

    Sure, no problem! 

    Posted by john fowles

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