You know what I would love to do? I’d love to start an effort devoted entirely to solving the easy problems in the world. Not a new NGO; you know how I feel about that, but a division within a major existing group. It would be funded by donations, not government grants, and focus on the low-hanging fruit in relief and development. Heck, we could call it Low Hanging Fruit, and live with the inevitable LHF acronym. We wouldn’t worry about sustainability, but we’d have a big focus on local involvement.
There are a million little ideas we all run into, that don’t fit with any expressed donor priorities, but would so obviously make a useful different in the world. LHF would work on those. We’d document everything to pieces, so it would also serve as research on what works. Every community we worked in would have a paired control community with similar demographics, and as soon as we could demonstrate an intervention was working, we’d extend it into the control group so they could benefit too.