BARBADOS – In 2012 on Christmas Eve, one of today’s major pop stars stepped up and started making a noticeable impact on the lives of the world’s poor through technological developments in her hometown, Bridgetown, Barbados.
Rihanna (Robyn Fenty), the then 24-year-old Diamonds songstress, decided that she wanted to extend a charitable donation of $1.75 million to Barbados cancer hospital in honor of her late grandmother.
While her grandmother’s legacy was the driving force behind helping this specific illness, Rihanna’s impact on the world’s poor was also supported by technology. Together, technology and Rihanna’s impact on the world’s poor can resolve many ongoing issues.
Fenty’s philanthropical efforts are just one instance of technology producing a difference amongst the lives of those in need around the world. Through social media and the internet in general, humanity has been able reach a large portion of the world’s deprived and underprivileged.
In another instance in 2012, Fenty also advocated for finding Joseph Kony, the central African warlord who recruited child soldiers, in an admirable attempt to bring and facilitate justice.
Jason Russell was the leading man who shed light to the world about Kony. His attempt utilized social media and the internet, but also high profile celebrities (such as Fenty) and every other technological platform possible: What better way to find someone than to make him a celebrity through other celebrities?
“We thought that virality looked like 500,000 or a million views within the year,” he says. “We thought that was success. We had 120 million views in five days.” Russell explains.
According to Russell, the charity allowed for up to 300 people to work with the organization at its peak, including interns, volunteers and short-term workers. While the search for Kony carried on, Invisible Children, the San Diego non-profit organization that helped create Russell’s video, raised $32 million for the cause.
Technology is one of the world’s biggest catalysts in modern science and communication. Technology has come to positively influence the human race in numerous ways, as it has been able progress in more ways than other tools could. Technology’s impact on the world’s poor has gotten us further than we could have ever imagined, especially in terms of our health and outreach.
Whether it be through philanthropy, educating others on global issues around the world, or simply keeping in contact with our distant loved ones, technology has made it possible to positively impact those who live in strife to better circumstances. The world is always watching, and therefore always ready to help.
– Jalil Perry