Wednesday, 24 February 2016

Kristof, Nicholas; WuDunn, Sheryl "A Path Appears"

Kristof, Nicholas; WuDunn, Sheryl "A Path Appears: Transforming Lives, Creating Opportunity" - 2014

I read "Half the Sky. How to Change the World" by the same authors and couldn't wait for this book to appear. So, I bought the first copy I could get my hands on. Usually, I don't mind whether I get the US American or the British edition but in this case I wish I would have checked whether the British one would have been different. Or would have at least given some more European links.

Don't misunderstand me, this is a fabulous book, so many great causes that the couple draws our attention to and what we can do to help those unfortunate people either on the other side of the glove or even next door who only need a little money to change their life for the better. Unfortunately, most of the addresses given in the book are for Americans who give US Dollars.

But that is the only complaint I have. After all, it is a US American book, probably written mainly with US American readers in mind.

The authors have done some great research, as I had already experienced in their former book. What it comes down to, in a nutshell, if you want to donate money, find a cause that you consider is worthy and make sure you give it so that this money really makes a difference to someone. The authors make us understand that even a small donation can make a big change. Or if we don't have money that there are still things we can do, volunteer or  write, for example.

So, even though the last part of the book is not very helpful for me, I still have learned a lot. How I can find an organization that I want to support, what I can do in order to help where I think help is needed most. They also underlined that any help is helpful, no matter how small.  So, research for the right charity, just as if you want to buy a new gadget, check what the charities do and whether you like what they are doing, don't just throw money at something and think you have done a good deal, if you know where your money goes to, it is so much better. And don't just look at how much money they spend on advertising, check how much money is raised and goes to the cause in the end.

An informative and inspirational book. Well done, Nicholas D. Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn.

From the back cover: "With scrupulous research and on-the-ground reporting, Nicholas D. Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn explore how altruism affects us, what are the markers for success, and how to avoid the pitfalls. In their recounting of astonishing stories from the front lines of social progress, we see the compelling, inspiring truth of how real people have changed the world, underscoring that one person can make a difference.
A Path Appears offers practical, results-driven advice on how best each of us can give and reveals the lasting benefits we gain in return. Kristof and WuDunn know better than most how many urgent challenges communities around the world face to¬day. Here they offer a timely beacon of hope for our collective future."

The authors won the Pulitzer prize for their reports about China in the New York Times. They also have started a foundation, read more about it here: "Half the Sky Foundation"


  1. I have 3 charities I give to regularly and I did research on them to see that the money goes primarily to those who need it, not to the people running the charity. This sounds like a worthwhile book and would save you a lot of time on research.

    1. It certainly is. I admire the authors anyway and they have done a great job. As I said, a lot of those charities are "very American" and but I guess that's the best thing you can do anyway, go local.

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