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Author Topic: Dog Food for Kenyan Children?  (Read 15093 times)

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EmpressCarla

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Dog Food for Kenyan Children?
« on: February 08, 2006, 05:26:19 PM »

A New Zealand dog food manufacturer, Christine Drummond, has offered to send dog food to help starving Kenyans. She apparently can’t distinguish the difference between an African child and a puppy—she offered 42 tons of the dog food. Drummond is still locked in the colonial-era arrogance that sees Africans as animals and can be treated in any way the “big bwana” sees fit.

Drummond, founder of Mighty Mix dog food, said she wanted to send the first shipment to Kenya in March. She said the relief food she intended to send, NZ's Raw Dry Nourish, used the same ingredients as Mighty Mix dog food biscuits. “The first plan was to send dog biscuits and change the vitamins,” Drummond said, but she changed plans when she realized there were too many starving children in Kenya. Instead, she added, she produced a powder that she says just needs water added to form a sustainable meal.

Drummond said she came up with the aid idea to send dog food for hungry Kenyan children after she spoke with a New Zealand woman whose daughter had just returned from a village in Kenya. Her plan was to distribute the food through the Mercy Mission charity, based in Kenya, and promote it as a "nutritional supplement" rather than dog food. New Zealand doctors supposedly said it was okay, accordingly to a published account.

Mighty Mix dog food agent Gaynor Siviter, told a New Zealand reporter: “The dogs thrive on it. They have energy, put on weight. It's bizarre but if it's edible and it works for these people then it's a brilliant idea. It beats eating rice.”

Kenya is currently suffering from five successive droughts. Needless to say, Drummond’s offer has been roundly denounced in newspaper columns and article throughout Africa. “Our children aren't puppies, madam,” declared a headline in Kenya's main newspaper, The Nation newspaper. Readers sent a chain of letters protesting against this racism. “For us Kenyans, it's a racial insult,” Julius Kwea of Nairobi said, in a published remark. “Kenyan kids are not so desperate as to eat dog food,” Kenya government spokesman Alfred Mutua said. “The offer was very naive and culturally insulting given the meaning of dogs in our culture,” he said.

“This is the time when Kenya needs leaders like Mugabe,” a Kenyan commentator said, referring to Zimbabwe’s leader, who has distributed formerly white-owned lands to landless Africans. “Leaders who can come out strongly and say ‘No’ to aid that does not respect the dignity of Africans. Kenyan children are human too and I think Mugabe was right in telling off western countries not to choke Zimbabweans with food they didn't need. If we don't stand firm, Europeans can play dirt things to our people.”

When racism rears its ugly face in the food aid business, the Western media is either silent or will move quickly to excuse blatant incidents as isolated cases. Even international relief agencies have buried their head in the sand and have adopted the its-non-of-our-business approach.

“I have so much heart for Kenyans,” Drummond said, in published remarks, trying to back off the controversy she caused. “I want to apologize to the government for what the media has created. I never intended to offend anyone.”

Yet, she still justified: “The powder consists of dried beef, mutton, garlic, kelp and other products, is full of energy-boosting nutrients. I eat it myself.”

There are many causes of hunger in Africa and these include land rights and ownership, diversion of land to non-productive use, drought, increasing emphasis on export-oriented agriculture, inefficient agricultural practices, war and others. Western countries and their conveyors of food aid have increasingly moved into solving hunger in the conventional sense–donating food is such a way as to perpetuate poverty and dependency in a way that Africans do not readily realize it. Now comes the ultimate insult: The offer of dog food.

Tsiko is The Black Star News’s Southern Africa correspondent based in Harare, Zimbabwe.

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Ras Saadon

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Re: Dog Food for Kenyan Children?
« Reply #1 on: February 08, 2006, 06:16:08 PM »

What the hell?!?  [smiley=angry.gif] [smiley=angry.gif].
What is going on with these people??? offering dog food to humans??? thier arrogance knows no limits!!
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Positive_I-rations

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Re: Dog Food for Kenyan Children?
« Reply #2 on: February 08, 2006, 06:29:08 PM »

Dog food... Seems she have nah Respect at all...

Bless
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EmpressGong

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Re: Dog Food for Kenyan Children?
« Reply #3 on: February 08, 2006, 07:47:22 PM »

Pure FYAH pun dat woman. She didnt mean to offend anyone? She eats it herself? RIGHT! From de first time she pitch dat idea to whoever, them had a right to tell her that she is nuts instead of thinking bout the business benefits to be had from such a donation.

How dare she want to give children dog food? I know that it could very well be eaten by humans...but yes plain and simply the  food has been stereotyped! Same way I wouldnt eat bird seed or fish food I wouldnt eat dog food! It aint for no human body!

And why would you want to pump dem children up with dried meat!!!!!!!!!!!!!


I could go on and on. Man just pure fyah. [smiley=lipsrsealed.gif] [smiley=angry.gif]
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Wahine

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Re: Dog Food for Kenyan Children?
« Reply #4 on: February 09, 2006, 09:26:38 AM »

Thank you for posting that article EmpressCarla.
I live in New Zealand and the first i heard about this woman's proposed plan was on tv. My initial reaction??? My eyes and ears did a double take!
Even if my kids were starving i still wouldn't feed them dog food! She can eat as much of it as she likes, but as EmpressGong said it has already been "strereotyped" and i can see why people would feel and be insulted by this offer!
What really makes my blood boil is that she has sucesfully made our country look like a bunch of dumb sh*ts and underminded the work that other people are trying to do from here.
No doubt she could probably see dollar signs in her so called donation cause i doubt for one second that she would have just "donated" the crap even if it had been accepted.
I am glad that the people of Kenya have fired back at her. I hope she thinks twice before trying to make "donations" like this again.
Maybe she could be listed as a bad donor overseas so that she can't change the name of her product and try it again?? Just a thought.
Again thanks for the article. The media are always so one sided that i don't oftenly get to hear what the response of the world is.
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Burre

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Re: Dog Food for Kenyan Children?
« Reply #5 on: February 11, 2006, 01:26:26 AM »

Man this is horrible !
There shouldn't be anything like this in the world  [smiley=sad.gif]
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newrasta

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Re: Dog Food for Kenyan Children?
« Reply #6 on: February 11, 2006, 08:40:24 PM »

Wow, that's really disgusting... [smiley=cry.gif]
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african_herbsman

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Re: Dog Food for Kenyan Children?
« Reply #7 on: February 11, 2006, 08:54:04 PM »

I-Ney,Irie

This is truly sickening
that woman should be made to eat the dog food on tv if she likes it so much
this shows that afrikans are still treated like 2nd class citizens [smiley=angry.gif]
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Lost_Soul

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Re: Dog Food for Kenyan Children?
« Reply #8 on: February 11, 2006, 11:10:21 PM »

I live in New Zealand & this woman was on the 6pm news the other night eating this food. She has been eating it & feeding it 2 her own children for the last 20 years. I know the thought of it may be yuck but I think she has good intentions. From what I gather it is a very nutrious food that has been proven 2b fit for human consumption. Maybe she is doing the wrong thing...but is it not better to eat then starve to death?
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EmpressCarla

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Re: Dog Food for Kenyan Children?
« Reply #9 on: February 12, 2006, 02:22:21 AM »

Blessings

The thing is, from what I've read Kenyans (and maybe Africans in general, I'm not sure) view dogs as very lowly animals. They do not even keep them as pets. So to offer food meant for a dog is a HUGE insult to them. Imagine if you were starving and someone offered you food fit for a rat or a pig (i.e., slop). Even if I were starving, I wouldn't see that offer as a "good deed". Perhaps the woman meant well, but MOST people are not interested in eating dog food. At best, it was just plain ignorant.

If the woman is truly genuine in her desire to give charity, then let her take the same amount in cash that it would cost to manufacture and send the dog food, and just send the cash instead to an existing charity.

Be blessed.
« Last Edit: February 12, 2006, 02:24:50 AM by Carla »
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Lost_Soul

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Re: Dog Food for Kenyan Children?
« Reply #10 on: February 12, 2006, 07:50:55 PM »

I understand what your saying EmpressCarla. This is a tough one because I see a person trying 2 help yet she is being put down for it. I agree that she should send money instead but I guess we do not know all her circumstances & maybe that is just not an option for her.
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Wahine

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Re: Dog Food for Kenyan Children?
« Reply #11 on: February 13, 2006, 06:06:24 AM »

Lost_Soul...
I see you are from Auckland land of the great divide between the rich and poverty stricken.
If you were a person who belonged to a group of people who had been downpressed for many many years and someone offered you food "labelled" as dog food would it not make you feel like the kicked "dog" so to speak??
When you want to help others, you should at least be diplomatic and sensitive about how you address the issue.
Perhaps if she had labelled it as a nutricious supplement it might have made a difference. I certainly know that if i was starving and someone offered me dog food to eat i wouldn't want it either.
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Ash-Tree

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Re: Dog Food for Kenyan Children?
« Reply #12 on: February 13, 2006, 05:47:59 PM »

instead of desinging a crap food that mixes with water why didnt she just give them the money it cost to do this?
jah Ashley
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tarren

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Re: Dog Food for Kenyan Children?
« Reply #13 on: February 14, 2006, 02:41:21 AM »

This seems much more like an insult rather than a helping hand
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Wahine

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Re: Dog Food for Kenyan Children?
« Reply #14 on: February 14, 2006, 05:31:29 AM »

My thoughts to blackstarline.

Pet food "better than death"
AAP
Kenyans reacting to an offer from New Zealand of dog food to save hungry children have said that they would rather eat dog food than starve to death.
"It is better to eat dogs meat than succumb to death," said Thomas Oddo, who recently lost a child because of starvation.
His comment followed an offer from New Zealand dog food manufacturer Christine Drummond who wants to send food to hungry children in Rusinga Island in Lake Victoria.
Parents of some of the children said leaders opposed to the offer were only satisfying their personal egos at the expense of starving millions in the country.
"That dogs food would save the lives of the malnourished children," said James Ochieng, speaking on behalf of the parents on Rusinga Island.
The parents claimed that some senior officials in the Kenya Government had siphoned relief food meant for a hungry population and sold it instead.
Mrs Drummond, founder of the New Zealand Mighty Dog Food company, heard the children were starving after the daughter of her friend Mrs Lois McGirr of North Canterbury returned from a recent visit to Kenya.
Mrs Drummond now wants to help by sending starving children in Kenya 42 tonnes of dog food in a powder to be mixed with water, which she says could feed 160 orphans for two months.
When contacted for comment, Kenya Government spokesman Alfred Mutua rejected claims some senior officials had siphoned relief food meant for starving children and sold it.
He insisted that Kenyan children were not suffering such a shortage of food that they needed to start eating dog food. The Government was ready to accept food donations but not dog's food.
The minister in charge of special programmes, John Munyes, said it was an insult for somebody to think Kenyans could accept food meant for animals. He said such people should desist because "we will be very careful in vetting the donations."
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