These days to start the Annual campaign II “ solidarity children ” of Imaginarium in collaboration with the Fundación Antena 3 and messengers of peace, which is based on sending developing countries from Western countries toys (poor countries, come on), during the Christmas and Epiphany.

Children have to decorate a shoe box in which put the toy or toys, specifying whether it is for a boy or girl, and take it to Imaginarium from day 1 to 14 November.

At a glance sounds all very nice, but sometimes I wonder (perhaps is making me old or poorly designed): To what extent can we do solidarity campaigns of toys?

Time ago that Westerners suffer a great disease that consists in believing the navel of the world. We believe that everything we do, everything we have and the way we live is the best, the most advanced and that they should pursue the rest of mortals.

Anyone who does not live like us, or is someone strange and anti-social, or has no resources to live this way, but seems hard to understand it.

The case is that, oddly enough, children in poor countries, smile and probably share more of what our children do. They learn to be happy despite everything and learn to live with what they have, because they cannot have more and, simply, they do not need much more.

That’s the message we give to our children: “ are going to send toys for poor children, who have no money to buy them ” something shocking, find it me first because a child what can not be with according to which European toy (a red plastic car, a toy that goes to battery or an action man, give some examples …) and second because children in developing countries they do not need these toys to be happy.

Our not

True, our children also need toys to be happy, however, in the society in which they live, it is unthinkable that a child grow up without toys.

There is no toy gene, they are not born need material things. We are us and our consumer society that impose, little by little, the need for material goods and the need to wish them.

Children without resources of poor countries do not have this need because they are able to play and have fun without toys (or do so with which they themselves are built) and it is for this reason that It seems to me to be even cruel to put a grain of sand that help make these children who need to be happy toys like ours.

But children have to learn to be caring, right?

Of course, but children do not have to stand in solidarity with the poor countries to clean up the image of adults who we aren’t, and less if this solidarity we create needs in those who do not have them or this we do believe our children that we are happy thanks to what we have and that they are unhappy because they have no.

You can be supportive in a hundred different ways. No need to send things to other countries, but look in any corner of our big cities to find people with needs.

I am beyond, no need to even find the beggar asking in any corner, but look at our nearest relatives, our neighbors, our friends, our friends and strangers because there are multiple situations in which someone may need our help (whether to lend a hand, offer a shoulder that cry, is offering an ear to listen to) (, is …).

Así, starting from our closest environment our children can learn what is solidarity.

Binta and the great idea

Binta and the great idea is a short subject that belongs to a film carried out by Unicef entitled “ in the world all the time “ which can easily reach the heart because it’s beautiful and because it helps the Western half to know how the children live in poor countries.

It is directed by Javier Fesser and formed part of the shortlisted for the Oscars. I recommend that you see, because it is wonderful and it helps to see the southern hemisphere from another point of view.

The person who recommended me this film told me that their children aged 5, 8 and 12 had seen her with her and apparently a broad debate in which appeared the words originated in his house “ needs ”, “ playstation ”, “ brand clothing ”, etc. The best thing is that the debate grew out of their children and not it.

The good life

I also recommend this tale of Tony Mello which helps to think about this topic:

Enzo, a wealthy merchant from Puerto Ayacucho, visits to indigenous communities in the upper Orinoco and is horrified when she sees Orawe, indigenous Yanomami lying quietly in his (kind of hammock) chinchorro, chewing tobacco.

-Why not go fishing? – asks Enzo. – Because I have already enough fish for today – answer you Orawe. – And why not have more of what you need? – insists the dealer. – And what was going to do with it? – asks at the same time the Indian. – Win more money. In this way you could put an outboard engine in your Canoe. Then you could go far in the river and catch more fish. And thus you win enough to buy a nylon netting, so you will get more fish and more money. You win soon to have two canoes and up to two motors and faster… You will then be rich, like me. – And what would do then? – asked again the indigenous. – You could sit and enjoy life – answered the shopkeeper. – And think that I am doing at the moment? -replied the Indian Orawe satisfied.


The initiative is laudable. I find it wonderful to try children to learn what the word solidarity means, however does not seem correct to do so at the expense of “ disrupting ” the peace and happiness of children who do not need toys to smile by creating the feeling that to be happier need things so.

We can show the kids how to be caring and sharing acting us as people solidarity with those people in our environment that you need our help at some point. You just need to slightly open eyes and minds to find the moments and the endless possibilities that appear daily to provide our help.