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Latest News

Prime Minister John Howard took delivery today of thousands of postcards with a clear message about meeting the goal to halve global poverty by 2015. 24,300 Australians from across the country had sent postcards to encourage the government to keep up the effort to meet the targets of the Millennium Development Goals, set in 2000.

The cards were handed over at Parliament House by Tim Costello, co-chair of the Make Poverty History campaign and Amanda Jackson, National Coordinator of Micah Challenge. Both campaigns work to support justice for the poor and encourage action by governments of all nations to bring half a billion people out of grinding poverty.

The Prime Minister commented that he meets many people around the country who are concerned about global poverty issues.

2007 marks the half way point in meeting the Millennium Development Goals and the 07:07:07 postcard campaign had a strong half-time message. A keen soccer player in his youth, Mr Howard appreciated the sporting analogy. Amanda Jackson, Micah Challenge coordinator said, “All Australians know that half-time in any sport is an important time to assess the state of play. Half-way to 2015, we have made some progress but still have to work hard in the second half to meet the big goal of poverty reduction.”

The government increased its aid commitment in 2005 and has formulated new spending priorities. Australia has also acted to support fairer trade rules to help poor nations find markets for their produce.

Some of the postcards had personal messages and prayers of encouragement for Mr Howard. Tim Costello commented, “People did not just send the cards as a political act but as a sign of their personal concern about poverty.”

Also presented were some of the cut out figures drawn by thousands of primary school children, who want to see children in poor countries have the chance to finish basic schooling. “The 14,000 “buddies” are a thank you to the government for increasing funding for primary education in our region”, said Ms Jackson.

The 07:07:07 postcard campaign started in June and will finish during Anti-Poverty Week. Postcards and buddies were sent in by churches, schools and sporting groups from all over the country.


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