Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Benevolence and Accountability

These pictures are of the Botswana, Africa Ministry Center under construction. It is one of many building projects which I was involved in. It is now complete. It was made possible because of the giving spirit of many Americans.

Americans are the most benevolent people in the world. Prosperity hardens some hearts...but most who have reached some degree of success in America want to give to those less fortunate than themselves. However, most givers want to know where there money is going. Ideally - one dollar given would equal one dollar in the hands of the hurting. Realistically - it just ain't so. Probably less than half will reach the pocket of the poorest and neediest. It just stands to reason that work should be rewarded. There is much work going on behind the scenes in order to deliver the aid to the people.

Does that mean there is corruption? Maybe. But then again ... Maybe not as much as you think! We must consider that from the funds donated there will have to be a portion spent to administer these funds. Some will be spent for labor. Another portion will have to be there to purchase food, generators, bedding, mosquito nets - or whatever the basic needs are that we (the benefactors) are providing. Then transport of the items is not free. Cargo-carrying Airplanes or Cargo Ships will have to be hired, personnel to operate the vessels, laborers to load and un-load, construction equipment and supplies to reconstruct docks, warehouses, roads, etc. and etc. will have to be funded. Even if a pilot with his own plane shows up and says, "I will give you the use of my plane and I will not charge for my services", you still would need to buy fuel for the transport and pay any un-expected costs incurred such as labor for loading and un-loading. The Marines and Sailors and foot-soldiers will be paid by our government...but their presence in Haiti means they are not available to perform other jobs at home. Persons will have to be hired to perform those "other jobs". Plus there are a myriad of things that will have to be paid which are un-expected and/or currently un-known.

When I was working for the Missions Department of our church, auditing (monitoring) projects was a part of my portfolio. All of this sending aid to impoverished Haiti reminds me that I am relieved to be retired. My heart goes out to the poor people of Haiti and to all those who are responsible for getting relief into their hands. God Bless America for it's Caring Ways.

In this picture, many bicycles are being given to African preachers in the Democratic Republic of Congo.


jack69 said...

Informative entry Fred. A reminder also that moving things around and getting them to the right places takes work, planning and coordination.

For someone who has never been involved in such an evolution it is easy to sit back and say how it should be done.

Some folks can't think how hard it is to feed a million people, much less get the stuff to all areas.

I learned on a simple division party. After one time and listening to the griping, I never griped at anyone who puts things together. I sure won's complain.

Give our love to the family, and thanks for the pictures.
Love ya!
Jack & Sherry

Fred Alton said...

Even Jesus organized the crowd before feeding them. "Sit down in companies of 50!" Then he did not give the food directly to the hungry - but gave it to his disciples who gave it to the people. Compare Luke 9:14 and 15.

About Me

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Cleveland, TN, United States
I am Fred Alton Brannen, the son of Louis A. Brannen (deceased) and Bonnie Jones Brannen, Louis was an Ordained Bishop with the Church of God. Bonnie is an Ordained Licensed Minister and at 89 years of age is still actively engaged in speaking and singing engagements. I am married to the former Frances Hildreth. We celebrated 53 years of marriage this past June and we are the parents of 3, grand-parents of 10, and great-grandparents of 10. I pastored in Tennessee for 24 years and served the Church in some capacity in missions for over 23 years. I retired from full-time ministry in August of 2008 but remain active, speaking and singing and teaching whenever opportunity affords itself. In January of 2010 I received a letter of commendation for having been credentialed as a minister in the Church of God for 50 years! My family is very important to me. Our get togethers are always noisy affairs and most times will include family sing-alongs. The children love their Mom's cooking so we have the privilege of seeing them regularly! WE LOVE having them over.

TheCabin on Day One

TheCabin on Day One
Fred Alton