I don’t know how many times I’ve wished harm to come to one of my sisters.
Whether it was because my baby sister cut off my Barbies’ hair down to their rubber scalps (I had long outgrown the toys, but still. They were mine, and now they are massacred.); or the middle sister who stole my clothes and lent them out to her friends when we were in high school. (That is my Paul Simon Born At The Right Time Tour t-shirt, you silly hippy poser, and if I see you wearing it, I will rip it off of your patchouli-scented back.)
may or may or may not have been definitely was some hair-pulling, screaming, and tears over those instances and others.
Even as adults, when they have made decisions with which I disagree, there are times I wish things for my sisters. I don’t (usually) wish them harm anymore, but I sometimes do wish they would stop acting like that. Or that the middle one’s voice didn’t sound like mine when it’s recorded. It creeps me out.
The point is, I got old enough to have the opportunity to make wishes. And now my own children do, too, simply by virtue of being born at the right time and in the right place.
Right now, in our world, there are children who don’t live long enough to reach wish-making milestones. Because they aren’t offered vaccinations for childhood diseases that have been all but eradicated in First World countries.
This shouldn’t be happening. With apologies to Paul Simon, these kids are born at the right time.
Because the right time is now, and there are easy and small things we can do to help more little guys like the one below. He was inoculated against measles in Myanmar this year. And because of that, he gets the chance to make wishes.
Or for people in Sudan, which became the first GAVI (Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunisations)-eligible African country to offer the rotavirus vaccine in July 2011.
So far, at least 6.4 million childhood lives have been saved worldwide as a result of the efforts of Shot@Life, a subset of the United Nations Foundation which “connects and empowers Americans to champion vaccines as one of the most cost-effective ways to save the lives of children in developing countries.”
My wish today is that you visit Shot@Life’s site to see what they are doing to support GAVI and opportunities for children to live to make wishes, and even better, get to act on them.
And that someone would give me back my Paul Simon t-shirt.
This post was commissioned by Shot@Life. All opinions are my own.