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LOVE ARMY FOR SOMALIA, the battle of Twitter against famine

By La Piaule de Raph

NAIROBI – Initially, they were only five. They launched LOVE ARMY FOR SOMALIA, the most important charitable fundraising event this year to bring food to Somalia, a country hit by a terrible famine. And it all started on Twitter with a simple hashtag: #TurkishAirlinesHelpSomalia.

Just an idea.

On March 15, 2017. Jérôme Jarre, the originator of the initiative, posts a video on Twitter accompanied by a message “MAINSTREAM MEDIA WILL NOT TALK ABOUT IT !!! REVOLTING !!! LET’S MAKE NOISE !!!

“[The media do not want to talk about it !!! It’s revolting !!! Let’s talk about it !!!]. In this video, he recounts the telephone conversation he had with a volunteer in Somalia: he told him he had witnessed the death of a dehydrated girl. Unfortunately, this case is not an isolated case. In reality, this sad story is only the echo of a still more serious drama, famine in East Africa.

Malnourished drought-hit Somalis

Jerome denounced the lack of communications in the media and offers Internet users to help.

“What if we found a plane? And that we fill it with food and send him there in Somalia? ”

After some research, he finds an airline that proposes the trip: Turkish Airlines. The hashtag #TurkishAirlinesHelpSomalia is launched in the process. The objective: to share it in bulk in order to obtain any response from the company.

Lift-off !

Jérôme is not the only initiator of the movement: Chakabars Clarke, Juanpa Zurita, Casey Neistat, Ben Stiller and Amanda Cerny were also participating. In a few hours, the message is shared by thousands of Internet users including videographers, humorists and celebrities of all kinds.

Thanks to this general mobilization, Jérôme and his team quickly get a response from Turkish Airlines:

“We love Somalia. We got the call for this meaningful flight. “[We love Somalia. We are responding for this important flight.” he said.

The airline then promised that it would make available a 60-tonne cargo aircraft to carry out the initiative. The flight was scheduled for 27 March 2017 with a departure from Istanbul.

What was just a simple idea becomes a reality ..

On the page dedicated to the campaign, one learns, among other things, that the initiative is now attached to the NGO American Refugee Committee (ARC) and that the funds collected will be managed by the Ben Stiller organization, the Stiller Foundation. Finally, we are promised full transparency about the use of funds and the conduct of operations.

It’s up to us to play!

At the time of that writing, 21 hours have passed since the beginning of the campaign and it has already achieved its objective, even exceeding it. Given such success, we can only welcome the entire team behind the initiative, which has found the words and means to raise awareness and federate all these people. Finally, more than just a fundraiser, LOVE ARMY FOR SOMALIA, it is also an exemplary demonstration of the power of the crowds, which proves to us that by being united, nothing Is impossible.

Raph is the creator and editor of “Ni Geek Ni Nerd”. Fascinated by the Video Games, enthusiastic follower of Cinema and reader in my lost hours.  He is also a videomaker on Youtube;)

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