launched Fastathon LIVE 2012 Thursday through a live stream broadcast from Westport and Mali as its new campaign to address the hunger crisis in the Sahel region of West Africa
The international aid agency held the fundraiser to raise money for the 18 million people without food in Africa because of a 'high-market crisis,' according to Gary Shaye, Director of Humanitarian Operations at Save the Children in Westport.
Save the Children also wanted to make locals aware of a serious situation that impacts millions of people in West Africa, Shaye said. The event included informative, live-streaming question and answer sessions over the internet. Many people were interested in how the funds will be used to help, Shaye said.
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“People ask, ‘What is $20 or $100 going to do?'” Shaye said. “For a child suffering from cholera that could be an IV, which would rehydrate them.”
Save the Children has always received a good response from the local Westport community, especially from parents with children in school, according to Shaye.
“Parents take a real interest to make sure their kids are aware of issues internationally,” he said.
Save the Children calls on the Westport community and always makes sure people in town are familiar with their events and fundraisers.
“We’ve always found people to be very generous in Westport,” Shaye said, adding that some of the organization’s largest donors are from Westport and other parts of Fairfield County,”
Save the Children’s ability to respond to a large crisis like the one currently happening in Africa depends on the generosity of the public which is why the organisation wants to get as many people involed as possible.
“The current lack of access of food for so many people and so many children is not getting media coverage, so save the children thought it would make its own coverage,” Shaye said.
The organization displays pictures of victims of the crisis on their website to raise awareness for the situation, something that can show a supporter how skipping one meal at their fundraiser can provide a nutritional supplement for a child.