Nuru International: Five years and over 30,000 changed lives

While ONE members come from a variety of locations around the world, there is a fundamental truth that unites us. We believe that the world we live in is not destined to be this way.

We believe that there is more than a slim possibility of a different outcome for our global neighbors who are living in extreme poverty. Each of us has a different area of emphasis. Some focus in changing policy, others work in advocacy, and still others are operators on the ground.

Listen to a special message from Nuru International founder Jake Harriman

Each of us awakens each day with a commitment to be part of the generation who sees the end of extreme poverty. We write our representatives, we conduct data analysis, and we work arm-in-arm with our brothers and sisters around the globe who are needlessly suffering, because we know that as Martin Luther King, Jr. has said, “The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice. Or as our recently departed champion, Nelson Mandela has said, “Like slavery and apartheid, poverty is not natural. It is man-made and it can be overcome and eradicated by the actions of human beings.”

Together, we are taking ground and helping our neighbors chart a path toward a better future, a future filled with choices and opportunities.

Five years ago, Nuru was an idea. It was a bold idea initiated with a passion to see the end of extreme poverty in our lifetime. In five years, ideas can go through a number of changes. Some ideas vanish like a morning fog as they undergo testing and trials. But not this one. This one is just starting to gain momentum.

Maybe, as you have labored in your own efforts to end extreme poverty, you have begun to doubt. You have begun to wonder if it matters. I hope as you read this today you will keep going and keep striving. At Nuru we have seen our share of set-backs – threats, theft, drought – and our CEO was even struck by lightning the first day our team hit the ground in Kenya.

In spite of the challenges we have faced, we have kept pushing. And we all need to keep pushing. Because Nuru didn’t give up, there are over 30,000 people in Kenya and Ethiopia who are now lifting themselves out of extreme poverty for good. And, there are literally thousands of people who have stepped into the fray, together with us, who are starting to believe, together with us, that a different world is indeed possible.

But we’ve got to keep pushing against the darkness, the uncertainty, the naysayers. As Mandela, encouraged us, we need to let our greatness blossom!

Maybe you have a friend or a colleague who is a bit of a skeptic. Maybe they really want to believe that extreme poverty can be ended in our lifetime but they need someone like you to help them in their unbelief. My hope is that the video above which celebrates the last five years of Nuru will not only encourage you as we keep pressing toward the goal, but that as you share it, it might help others join our efforts to be the generation that sees the end of extreme poverty!

Let’s let our greatness blossom!

Billy Williams, Grassroots Movement Director, Nuru International