There’s lots I want to talk about here, but for now, see ‘activism’ entries in the blog, or spend some time checking out these charities. They matter because they’re run by expert volunteers, working hard, to bring off some amazing results. They really need your money:
Have you ever wondered where dictators get their fighter jets from? Or exactly who teaches them to fly the damn things? The political establishment in the UK is proud of being the world’s second-largest arms exporter. Which also means we’re the world’s second-biggest murder-pushers.
Wise heads will pop up from behind the Telegraph at this point to insist that by supporting the UK arms industry, we’re ‘generating British jobs’ and ‘retaining engineering expertise.’ Strange argument, because when you consider that each arms industry job in the UK enjoys an effective taxpayer subsidy of £10,000 it starts to look more like a political football of sorts. As for generating actual jobs and expertise, well, the UK space science and biotech industries enjoy stronger growth with a fraction of the subsidy - and that sounds like a pretty good way to create hi-tech jobs, doesn’t it? And don’t we have the EU’s biggest distribution of useable on- and off-shore wind resources waiting to be exploited?
Campaign Against Arms Trade (CAAT) are dedicated to exposing and dismantling the iniquitous, immoral and expensive millstone that is the UK arms industry. They are a tiny organisation that get big results – such as this court ruling against the government over the al-Yammah arms deal – with minimal funding. We have raised funds for them on several tours and they are a great bunch of incredibly hard-working, expert campaigners.
Please get involved.
Founded in 1960, OYT South provide young people from all backgrounds with a chance to step out of their normal domestic situation and learn tolerance, teamwork, self-confidence, mutual respect and understanding. Plus how to make a cup of tea in a 30-degree roll under gale-force winds…
They run a highly professional service supported by dedicated, caring and highly-trained volunteer staff, and their ‘young people first’ approach is recognized as one of the best in the sail training industry. In fact, Chief Executive Mark Todd was recognized with the inaugural MCA award for Commitment To Sail Training in recognition of the brilliant work they do.
Over the last two decades OYT have worked hard to carefully husband their fleet, and thousands of volunteers have sanded, stripped and painted millions of square feet of hull, decks and interiors to keep their 70 tonne ketch John Laing afloat and operating at the very high standards of safety and efficiency required.
Now they need to replace the John Laing as she comes to the end of her service life, and also to incorporate lessons learned in 50 years of sail-training experience. This state-of-the-art, purpose-built boat will offer enhancements specifically designed for young people and require fewer maintenance days per operating cycle – meaning more and more young people can enjoy and learn from the sea.
They have a number of sources of funding, but ultimately need much of the £2 million for this exciting new project from individual and corporate donations. So please help them make a difference in thousands more young lives over the next 50 years – learn how here.