Madonna’s latest fundraising event for her Raising Malawi charity, “A Night to Benefit Raising Malawi and UNICEF”, sponsored by Gucci will take place on the United Nations lawn. The money from the event will go to help orphans in Malawai. However, Fox News reports that Raising Malawi, still not a registered charity, is a front for the Kabbalah Center of Los Angeles which plans to invade Malawi with its Spirituality for Kids program.
According to Berg’s blog from April 24, 2006, his first move was to bring Malawi teachers to Los Angeles to retrofit them for Kabbalah. He wrote:
“We have brought a number of teachers from the African nation of Malawi to Los Angeles. This is part of our Raising Malawi initiative. They will be learning the Spirituality for Kids curriculum for the next 3 months. After that, they will go back to Malawi and teach the children there these empowering spiritual life lessons. I am very excited about this project. This morning we welcomed them to the Centre.”
Madonna’s rep, Liz Rosenberg, sent us an extensive defense of Kabbalah and Spirituality for Kids, by the way, insisting that the two are not related, and that SFK is not religious, and that Malawi children are not being targeted for religious purposes.
She concedes, however, that “In 2006, as a response to the urgent need for psycho-social support among children affected by poverty, disease, parental loss, sexual abuse, and chronic hunger, eight Malawian teachers were hired and brought to SFK headquarters in Los Angeles for training in the SFK curriculum. These teachers have since returned to Malawi and have successfully created a specialized empowerment program, SFK-Malawi, for orphans and vulnerable children.”
The article also asks if we’re ready to see impoverished kids wearing $26 red string on their wrists, drinking bottled Kabbalah water and trick-or-treating for UNICEF in Gucci loafers. I, for one, think that would be cool. It’ll be like how some poor people blow their money on lottery tickets. The only difference is, these kids won’t know any better and that’ll just make it funnier.