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Wednesday, March 11, 2009

The Cost of Life

Did you grow up in a home where all of your basic needs were met and surpassed? Were you given the option for the higher education institution of your choosing? How much differently would your life look if none of the above applied?

"In spite of the commitments made by governments to provide free and compulsory quality basic education, millions of children remain deprived of educational opportunities, many of them because of poverty. In a world where 1.2 billion people live on less than $1 per day, education is perhaps the most powerful instrument for reducing poverty and inequality, improving health and social well being, and laying the groundwork for sustained economic growth." -- Global Kids

Global Kids is a NYC-based organization addressing the urgent need for young people to possess leadership skills and an understanding of complex global issues, in order to succeed in the 21 st century workplace and participate in the democratic process. Partnered with Microsoft, Global Kids created an online game called Ayiti: The Cost of Life, to create awareness in kids (and adults) of the cycle of poverty.

Help the Haitian Guinard family get an education and improve their lives. The game takes place over four years, divided into sixteen seasons. At the beginning of each season, each family member is given a role: work, school, or volunteering. You have different options for jobs, but you may or may not qualify. You have a variety of different schools from which to choose, but you may not be able to afford the "good ones." And while volunteering doesn't bring home the bacon, it contributes to your overall mental health in a positive way. So, in third-world Haiti, how do you contribute to your bottom line, pay for school, and stay healthy and happy at the same time? And don't forget about severe weather, political unrest, and the possibility of rogue violence.

Are you up for the challenge? This ain't your momma's Oregon Trail.

For more information, visit Global Kids and Unicef.


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