What do we mean by ‘See the Beauty’?
Navigating the complex world of development and nonprofits can be confusing. Charity organizations compete for attention and supporters, often using emotionally manipulative methods that portray people as inferior and in need of pity. While this may be effective in raising money, we feel it perpetuates the idea of “primitive cultures” needing to be civilized by the Western world.
Instead of viewing the people we serve as problems to solve, we believe we have a responsibility to present their dignity, beauty, and humanity. We believe this perspective should be reflected in all our organization’s activities, from our photos to our publications to our programs. We hope that through these efforts, other individuals and organizations learn to see the beauty of not just Micronesia, but of all cultures.
We’ve come up with five guidelines that we use in thinking critically about development and interacting with other cultures.
- See beauty holistically
- Respect culture and dignity
- Be more than honest
- Don’t reduce people to problems
- Stay humble
We’ve described each below. Continue reading