Akvo means "water" in Esperanto, the international language. It felt like a good name. Seven of us started Akvo as a tech foundation that summer and returned to Stockholm World Water Week to tell the world we were something new -- an internet startup that could transform international development and help fix global poverty.
While I applaud the intentions of the voluntourists of the world, I think it is important for them to remain grounded in reality. They need to be constantly cognizant of their privileged positions to be doing development work in the first place and the limitations of both their time commitments and outsider status.
Each nation and region has its own circumstances, and there is no one-size-fits-all solution. But we know that in countries which have successfully reduced inequality, progressive taxation has been an important tool, enabling governments to invest in good quality health care and education for their poorest citizens.