In May this year Celtic fans advertised in the Swiss media issues regarding the licensing of Rangers FC for Uefa competitions in 2011, when the club was in the hands of Craig Whyte. The suspicion was that Mr Whyte made less than full and frank submissions to football authorities about his club’s tax and other financial affairs.
Perhaps as a consequence, two weeks later Uefa responded to a letter from Celtic shareholders on the matter, in which they confirmed the status of the “new club/new company” operating out of Ibrox. Dialogue continues on the matter, which is why we have heard little directly from the anyone on the subject.
Hundreds of subscribers stepped forward to fund the advertising campaign, so much so that it returned a surplus of £7900, which was earmarked for Mary’s Meals.
Celtic Quick News has funded four school kitchens for Mary’s Meals in Malawi, but when we approached them this time, they asked if we could buy food instead.
That money is now with Mary’s Meals and will be used to feed primary children at two schools in Liberia for the next 12 months. The Light of Islam Primary has a population of 350 and Siafa Dugba Public School has 300 pupils.
Mary’s Meals were delighted with the donation, commenting:
“We’re very grateful to Celtic supporters for this generous donation, which will be used to provide nutritious meals to 650 children every day they attend school in Liberia.
“Many children receiving Mary’s Meals in Liberia have been affected by the aftermath of the country’s civil war and, more recently, the devastating Ebola outbreak. A daily meal in a place of education provides stability for these children and encourages them to come to school and learn.
“On behalf of all the children attending Light of Islam Primary School and Siafa Dugba Public School in Liberia, thank you for this continued backing from Celtic supporters.”
Putting food on the table at a place of education for chronically deprived children is one of the most productive uses of aid we have today. Not only does a nourishing meal build fitter, healthier, children, who are more capable of fighting disease, Mary’s Meals see a pickup of school attendance of 30% after their meals start.
This means kids who would not previously had access to schooling for a variety of reason, now get the basic primary education most of the world takes for granted.
So there’s a second wave of benefit in feeding children living in subsistence communities at school. Not only are they stronger and healthier, learning to read and write, they will have better life opportunities as adults. Primary education provides a lifetime’s worth of benefit.
Mary’s Meals are a remarkably efficient charity. 93% of funds raised reaches the end recipient. They work in communities which are not only in need, but where their work can be of genuine benefit.
Liberia has had peace for a decade now. It recently became the first African country to elect a female president, and established a Truth and Reconciliation Commission to help it emerge from a cycle of civil war, the most recent of which cost 300,000 souls. As a consequence, it is fertile ground to build the structures of state, education and life.
Ebola closed the country’s borders two years ago, which is a huge deal for a nation which imports 90% of its staple foods, and caused already-chronic childhood malnutrition rates to rise beyond the calculation.
Food is already on the table at Light of Islam and Siafa Dugba schools. Mary’s Meals will send us photos in due course. A sign will be erected at each location to mark your donation, the impact of which, we’ll never know.
Thank you, you are just wonderful. But you knew that anyway.