I feel that it is very important to let people know that, surprisingly, not everything we hear in the Canadian news these days is true! I was recently interviewed for a Fifth Estate piece about WE Charity that was aired on The National on March 7 and appeared in print online on the following day.
I had only agreed to speak with the guarantee that I would be permitted to speak about the only part I truly knew about, and that was my personal experience alongside our volunteer group from Mount Forest.
Unfortunately CBC reporting took parts of my answers to certain questions and tacked the words onto answers to other questions in order to make it seem that I agreed with an attack on WE Charity which obviously was the “goal” of their piece.
When I told them that our experience had been completely positive and that WE Charity had always sent us regular updates about the work our money was helping to finance, they kept repeating, “But surely you were upset to learn that other groups also were fundraising for the deep bore well at Osenetoi, just as you were!”
In actual fact we always knew other groups were raising funds for this community. Many things can happen to donations if situations change. For example, at Osenetoi, after our visit in 2011, the famine there continued to the point that the local people were close to death from starvation.
WE sent us information explaining that they needed to do food drops for the people there, which is not usually part of their mandate whatsoever. Of course we agreed that necessity dictated we redirect some of our donations to this outreach. To put the drilling before the hunger of the people would have been illogical but certainly not mentioned on the news.
To visit there is to truly understand the widespread need, not just for a well but for almost every aspect of the people’s lives.
In the article it says “Three different groups in North America stated they raised funds for the borehole, amounts totalling far in excess of the cost of the deep water well,” following it with (Submitted by Donna McFarlane).
In actual fact, I said none of this but had submitted a picture they used! I object to being “credited” for saying disparaging things about a charity which I love and support!
I can’t pretend to understand why politicians would choose to decimate a Canadian charity and the lives of two honorable men, Marc and Craig Kielburger. Free the Children/WE Charity was helping Canadian youth embrace volunteering and caring about others.
Projects and efforts were creating very positive change both in communities here at home and in countries such as Kenya. We witnessed that first hand. What has happened in the Canadian news world that has led to stirring up a controversy by putting imaginary words in trusting people’s mouths rather than presenting an objective, balanced piece?
The trend of creating drama and the destruction it leads to and then following it up months later with a feeble apology is just not what Canadians expect or want from our newscasters.