Deseret News
Letter to the editor

I agree with Ryan Pearmain that America’s foreign aid is important to achieving a better America and a better world ("Increase our foreign aid," Feb. 16). Although most Americans think we already spend about 25 percent of our budget on development assistance, the truth is we spend below 1 percent.

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Recently, the Global Partnership for Education met for its fundraising conference and fell short of its goal. America attended but didn’t pledge. With 263 million children in our world out of school, the GPE’s work with countries to create education programs is badly needed. The plan is to help countries put 25 million children in school over the next three years. The countries where many of these children live pledged $110 billion, up to 24 percent of their budgets. America has given money in the past, thanks to Congress putting it in the budget. With the positive changes in trade, health and less conflict that education brings, it is not surprising over 110 members of Congress co-sponsored resolutions supporting the GPE.

It is time for citizens to encourage Congress to follow through and contribute to the GPE. Our calls and letters to those who represent us can help this to happen. Twenty-five million lives transformed will be worth the time it takes to make a call, right?

Willie Dickerson

Snohomish, Washington