Wednesday, May 27, 2009

International Aid

International aid in the food epidemic requires forward thinking and new ideas. Throwing money at tried and failed programs is as deplorable as inaction. But new doesn't necessarily mean good.

Cash distribution is something that has been floating around among, many forward thinking scholars. The UN debates:

"In a major endorsement of the approach, the UN's World Food Program, the biggest non-governmental distributor of food, is expected to announce later this month that it will begin distributing cash and vouchers instead of food in some areas according to WFP sources."

Not a bad idea, but keep in mind that most countries that really need international food aid are often not open to the help: Burma after last year's Cyclone Nargis, Zimbabwe for the past 29 years, North Korea - the list goes on. I don't think that distributing direct cash aid is a plausible or logical conclusion.