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November 13th, 2015

Burma: Free student activist Phyoe Phyoe Aung!

by:Deniz Zehra Tavli

Phyoe Phyoe Aung is the Secretary General of prominent student union the All Burma Federation Student Union. Student unions are illegal in Burma.

Imprisoned since March 2015, Phyoe Phyoe Aung is awaiting trial for charges relating to the demonstrations she helped organise, on behalf of students unhappy with a new education law passed by the government the previous year. The students say the law limits free speech and democracy in the education system, and are calling for the government to amend it.

In November 2015, Phyoe Phyoe Aung’s husband, Lin Htet Naing, was arrested for allegedly organising the protests – after nearly eight months in hiding.

Both Phyoe Phyoe Aung and Lin Htet Naing are prisoners of conscience: they have peacefully exercised their human right to free speech by criticising the government and attending protests – yet they are imprisoned for it, and facing many years behind bars if found guilty of the criminal charges they’ve been dealt.

Help ensuring that they are not tortured or ill-treated in detention and have regular access to family members and lawyers! Take action and sign the petition demanding the release of all imprisoned student protesters in Burma!
November 11th, 2015
Let's persuade richer countries to stop subsidising the fossil fuel industry
by:Deniz Zehra Tavli

Every minute governments back fossil fuels with $10 million but big polluter nations claim they don't have funds to aid the most vulnerable countries dealing with floods, droughts and storms.

Now poorer nations say if they can't count on the money, they can't sign up to a global climate deal due to be finalised in weeks. It is a deadly deadlock, but if enough people demand public funds to be shifted from dirty energy right now, there is a chance to unlock the finance to help those most in need.

In days, 80 ministers from across the world meet to try and find a solution. Let's get one million of us behind this push -- we'll deliver our call to the key ministers to expose the lie and shame them into action.

Sign the petition to undermine the spurious arguments and help breathing life into the talks taking place right now at the planetary climate deal in Paris!
Villagers Evacuate During Forest Fires in Sumatra
November 03rd, 2015
Sign to save Indonesia’s forests!
by:Deniz Zehra Tavli

Demand for palm oil is growing - and fast. At the moment, most of it ends up in hundreds of food products - from margarine and chocolate to cream cheese and oven chips - although it's also used in cosmetics and increasingly, for use in biodiesel.

But the cost to the environment and the global climate is devastating - to feed this demand, tropical rainforests and peatlands in South East Asia are being burned down annually to provide land for oil palm plantations. Every year tens of thousands die prematurely from respiratory illness. But this year it's worse than ever! Children are being evacuated. Some have even died from the smoke caused by the fires.

These fires are a man-made crisis driven by decades of forest destruction by some of the biggest palm oil and paper companies in the world. Greed is winning over the survival of people and amazing wildlife like orangutans and tigers.

Don't look away, act and sign the petition adressing President Joko Widodo and CEOs of palm oil producers, traders and buyers to stop this severe destruction of Indonesian forests and the suffering of all of its inhabitants!
ohrid lake
October 26th, 2015
Save the oldest lake in Europe!
by:Deniz Zehra Tavli

Located in the Dinaric Alps on the border between the Republic of Macedonia and Albania, with estimated age of around 4 million years, Lake Ohrid is the oldest natural lake in Europe and one of the oldest lakes in the whole world. With over 200 endemic species harboured in its waters it is the most important lentic ecosystem on the European continent.

Now the Macedonian government plans to dry the (Studenchishte) Wetland which is crucial for the survival of the lake in order to build apartments complexes on the coastline and cut down the last remaining reed bed and covering a large area of the lake with concrete platforms “to grow” huge tourist resorts. A 50ha area of protected National Park area will be destroyed due to building a 14 km expressway and another 400ha will die for a ski complex which will include a huge hotel and a settlement with houses.  

Call on the Macedonian Prime Minister to stop the procedures for changes of the Galicia National Park Management Plan. Sign the petition against the the urban development plans of Ohrid and the Ohrid lake coastline!
Greece Migrants
October 12th, 2015
Help the helpers
type:Crowd Funding, Donation, Volunteering
by:Deniz Zehra Tavli

The situation on Lesvos island is still severe: On a daily basis, thousands of refugees arrive on the Greek island right in front of the Turkish north Aegean coast. Mytilene, the capital of Lesvos, houses many different tranistion camps for the numerous arriving refugees from Syria, Afghanistan and Iraq. These camps could not be maintained without the help of volunteers.

Volunteers are always welcomed and needed but the coordination of all helping hands can be an overwhelming task since many volunteers came to help but find no accommodation to stay for a longer time on the island. Hotel rooms start from 35 EUR per night and living expenses such as food and gasoline are overpriced on the else touristic island.

In an attempt of securing the stream of volunteers coming to Lesvos island, the team of Volunteer's Coordination Lesvos started a crowdfunding campaign in order to raise 6.000 Euros. The funding will be used for covering the costs of all volunteers who came to the island independently, without any supporting organization behind them.

Volunteering is a vital factor in crisis response. Support the coordinators on Lesvos island, chip in and help the helpers!
Ali Mohammed al-Nimr
October 02nd, 2015
Saudi Arabia: Save Ali (21) from Beheading and Crucifixion!
type:Petition, Protest
by:Deniz Zehra Tavli

Saudi Arabia is about to behead a 21-year-old man and then crucify him to display his body in public. A cynical fact: This same country was just chosen to head a U.N. Human Rights Council panel.

Ali Mohammed al-Nimr was arrested when he was only 17 for participating in demonstrations against the government, then he was convicted under torture. But his case is not an exception in the kingdom - Saudi Arabia has executed more than 100 people this year, that’s a rate of one every 2 days!

France has already requested that Saudis stop this execution, but the US, Germany, and the UK also maintain close relationships with the regime. The best way to get urgent action is to channel our outrage to these leaders who can persuade their Saudi allies.

Sign up now to save Ali, and then stop this human rights farce, his execution could happen anytime!
September 23rd, 2015
Empowering girls and women in South Sudan
type:Donation, NGO, Volunteering
by:Deniz Zehra Tavli

The Forum for Community Change and Development (FOFCOD) is an organization dedicated to the needs of Southern Sudanese young women and Girls.

Founded in 2009 by a group of innovative women, the organization has grown into a broader Youth (girl) movement that is committed to contributing to the national development through programs of Human rights, Democracy, Conflict resolution, health, Education Livelihoods and food security, Entrepreneurship, peace and justice in South Sudan. The organization focuses especially on women's rights since women in South Sudan have confronted manifold violations of their human rights including physical, sexual, psychological and economic abuse, cutting across boundaries of age, race, culture, wealth and geography.

Focusing on gender equality, FOFCOD believes development isn't fully attainable without women making decisions with men, as equals. Support this brilliant organization and their goals by donating or volunteering!
MTI_medical care
September 16th, 2015
Support Medical Teams International!
type:Donation, NGO, Volunteering
by:Deniz Zehra Tavli

Medical Team International is a global health organization, helping with disaster relief around the world. They deliver medical and dental care, humanitarian aid, and holistic development programs to all people in need, regardless of religion, nationality, sex, or race. They send teams of volunteer medical professionals and medical supplies to care for the sick and injured, and help establish long-term health promotion initiatives.

Medical Teams International’s programs are designed to provide a swift, coordinated disaster recovery plan in crisis situations. Collaborating with local government agencies, they evaluate the disaster impact and coordinate with a standby pool of trained and experienced disaster response volunteers to send aid within 48 hours.

Through partnerships with local health organizations, MTI provides transitional health and community programming for impacted communities, from disaster relief to development, saving lives and improving quality of care. They also enable self-sufficiency, preparing communities for future disasters by identifying the highest risks for disaster and how to mitigate these.

In times of the biggest refugee crisis after the 2nd World War, it is our turn to support professional organisations with focus on crisis response. Support Medical Teams International by volunteering, donating or simply praying.
September 12th, 2015
Desinvest now for a Fossil Free Münster!
by:Deniz Zehra Tavli

Global climate change and its consequences are a tangible threat to our societies. The global temperature rises continuously and climate is changing in front of our eyes. Almost all governments of the world agree that a warming of more than 2 ° C would be dangerous and could cause catastrophic consequences so that human life on our planet becomes impossible.

However, oil companies continue to exploit the existing ressources and spend billions of dollars in order to find more fossil fuels.

Now the time has come that public institutions, cities and local authorities end their support for the promotion and development of fossil fuels.
Our public money should be invested in a better future, not in an industry that aims on destruction of our planet.

The city of Münster has to stop its investments in the fossil or nuclear industry and join many other cities which actively reduce their dependence on fossil fuels. Münstler could be the first German city which attempts to boycott fossil and nuclear industry and could also serve as a model for following cities. Withdrawing the social legitimacy of fossil and nuclear industries' destructive practices is the first step to set an impulse for a total social transformation.

Sign the petition for Münster to become the first German city withdrawing investements into fossil industry!
September 09th, 2015
Share your flat with a refugee!
type:Crowd Funding, Donation, NGO, Project
by:Deniz Zehra Tavli

The idea is as brilliant as it is simple: Why not offer the room your former housemate left to a displaced person urgently in need for a proper accomodation? Why should refugees live in mass accomodations, seperated and isolated from the society they should actually be part of? Mareike Geiling and Jonas Kakoschke from Berlin had this idea and started a revolutionary project of house- and flastharing called "Refugees welcome".

How does it work? If you have a free room in your flat or house for rent, sign up on the projects webpage. After signing up, a local partner organisation will get in touch with you in order to find a matching housemate. You meet your new future flatmate and if the sympathy is on both sides, you may welcome your new refugee housemates in their new rooms. The rent will be covered via micro- and crowdfundings. So far the project matched 138 refugees to shared flats, expanded to Austria with a fully established sister organisation and helps building up similar projects in about 20 other countries.

If you are unsatified with how refugees are treated in your country and if you have spare room, if you want to establishing a new way of welcoming refugees and have some funds left even for a small donation, then support, sign up, donate, share and like!

Photo: Olga Syrova/AP