Friday Links

Friday Links

What are you up to this weekend? I’ll be making testing a brownie recipe – with amaranth and millet (“ancient grains“) and drinking several cups of milky chai. Here are a few links from around the web for your weekend reading. See you back here on Monday!


The watercolour version of Google Maps! You can zoom all the way in to your city. The Eiffel Tower is marked as a shadow-y space in the shape of its base 🙂


UNICEF is hiring a podcaster! Gosh, how far we’ve come from the early days of being an “aid worker”, wearing pants made of waterproof materials and rugged boots for tramping all over the jungle. So much of today’s work at humanitarian organisations is done in climate-controlled environments, with several computers, Bluetooth headsets, and instant, cross-continental communication.


This past week, Europe underwent its second heat wave this summer, making life very difficult for locals and tourists alike, in a continent where air-conditioning is considered a luxury. It rarely got that hot – 45C in Paris! – where I grew up, on the beach in the tropics. Simultaneously, every farmer I met in Patagonia complained about the too-warm winters and lack of snowfall (less snow means less water on the ground come spring, meaning less grass for the animals to eat) in the last 15 years. Is this the result of climate change? Are we going to see more summers like this?


Can you get a job writing Christmas cards? The answer is: yes! This NGO in the north of Thailand, started by two former bankers, is looking for English- and German-speaking volunteers to handwrite hundreds of Christmas cards later this year, presumably to be sent out to donors in advance of the holiday season, because there’s little so impactful as a handwritten note to express gratitude.

My first thought: no banking intern is ever unpaid (and banks regularly send out Christmas greetings to their private wealth management clients), so why is this role unpaid? Is it because it’s at an NGO in the tropics?

Second thought: They want a foreign candidate (native English or native German) with good handwriting (which often ends up being a woman), and the ability to sit for hours to do detail-oriented work, to fund herself to work on their fundraising team in a Middle Income country? For FREE?

Third thought: Why don’t they simply train a Thai person to do this job? Would a Thai person be willing to work for free when the results of their work are almost certainly going to bring more funds to the NGO?





Watercolour maps via DesignMom. Photo by Arnaud Matar.

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