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July 26th, 2012
07:34 PM ET

OutFront of the Mali Crisis: Helping Mali Refugees

During what Amnesty International calls “the worst human rights situation in 50 years,” 250,000 people have fled Mali as Islamic militants, with links to Al-Qaeda, took control of the northern part of the country.

A message for Mali

OutFront first reported on the crisis during the coup in March and, this week, Erin Burnett became the first U.S. anchor to broadcast live and on-site from a Malian refugee camp, just miles from the country’s border.

Why Mali matters: al Qaeda on the rise

During her time at the camp, she was moved by the stories she heard, particularly those from children.

One of the most disturbing aspects of the crisis that touched Erin was a projection by the World Food Program that Malian refugee camps would run out of food in the next month. And Erin saw it first hand - the immense need for food and water. She also saw young children at the camp playing with small dead birds – their toys – and expressed how meaningful it would be to have soccer balls to play with instead.

Erin Burnett 'OutFront' with Mali's refugee children

Hoping to improve the situation, Erin Burnett OutFront wants to do something to help. We are calling it OutFront OutReach to give the crisis a platform, and so that our many viewers can give directly to the Malian refugee crisis.

OutFront OutReach is working with Save the Children to send food, water, and medicine to refugees. Please feel free to follow this link to give food and water to Malian refugees as part of Save the Children: Mali Hunger Crisis Children in   Emergency Fund.

OutFront OutReach is also working with One World Futbol Project to donate specially made soccer balls to Mali.  The new initiative is called “Balls to Mali,” and the balls will go directly to the Mali Refugee Camp. Please follow the link to make a donation. Note: One World Futbol Project is a for-profit organization and you will not receive a tax deduction from your donation.

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Filed under: Mali • OutFront OutReach