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42 Int'l Soc. Work 5 (1999)

handle is hein.journals/intsocwk42 and id is 1 raw text is: 

International Social Work 42(1): 5-6

Sage Publications: London, Thousand Oaks, CA and New Delhi
0020-8728[199901]42:1;5-6; 007564


Having just completed the task of reviewing the proofs for this
edition of our journal, I turned to the challenge of preparing the
Editorial. Although earlier in the week I had one idea of its possible
shape and content, several things conspired today to take me in a
different direction.
  It began when I was reading the Jivanjee and Tebb article about
Kenyan women,  large numbers of whom spend 3-4 hours a day just
fetching water'. Just a short time ago I had opened the morning's
mail and found myself grumbling at our water bill from the utilities
company  which was higher than I expected. The amount for which
we were being charged represented the many thousands of gallons
we had used to water our lawn and garden and to fill our swimming
pool in the spring. I do not know just how much water our pool
holds but enough I am sure to ensure an adequate amount of water
for many families for whom just a single pailful is a highly sought
after, difficult to obtain and life-sustaining commodity.
  Later on, in reviewing the Book Section, I was shaken by Yitzhak
Berman's  review of Jacqueline Ismael's book on International
Social Welfare where mention is made, among many other horrible
events, of the death of one million people in Rwanda in a 12-week
period. Most of this tragedy was caused by a lack of basic human
resources. Just prior to starting at my desk this morning I had
performed  my  weekly chore of taking out the garbage  to the
roadside for pickup, well aware that much  of what was being
discarded by us and other families on the street as unwanted food
and possessions would be seen as life-saving and life-sustaining
items by many in the world.
  A  third awareness struck me as I struggled with these issues of
haves and have nots in our world. I realized that when I finish this
writing in the next hour or so I will fax it to Caroline Lane of Sage
who  will receive it within seconds of my sending it. What is of
wonder is that I can transfer information and ideas in an instant but
cannot do the same with resources that would save lives this very
day. Just to have our geraniums go without water for one day would
provide water to a whole village.


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