November 2009

It's 7:05pm in Dar es Salaam

Amanda and I have just returned from Dar es Salaam. We were on the road with Freedom Fone.

Last Tuesday, Nov 17 it was 9 degrees at 9am in orderly Johannesburg and 28 degrees with sweat inducing humidity at 7pm in chaotic Dar. After negotiating the jam-packed arrivals hall we smiled in relief when we discovered John holding up a torn piece of cardboard with Freedom Fone scribbled on it. We couldn't speak Swahili and he couldn't speak English but we made our greetings and jumped into his car for the ride of our life to a lodge off the Old Bagamoyo Road in Michokeni B.

From compassion to action, from action to knowledge

So get pissed off and start a Facebook group. Launch a Twitter hashtag. Translate compassion into action. But realize that the most effective action probably involves aggregating and disseminating information, building knowledge and awareness that’s an asset even if it doesn’t lead directly to political change. Read the article by Ethan Zuckerman