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The Action Thread Part Two

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GIRLS AND WOMEN

12 African game-changers you need to know

April 20 2017 | By: ROBYN DETORO

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Who is changing the game in Africa? That’s the question NewAfricanWoman magazine put to the public as they prepared to host the New African Woman Awards 2017 – an annual ceremony that honors and celebrates Africa’s most influential and impactful women. After weeks of nominations a special panel of judges took on the tough task of narrowing the candidates down to just twelve winners. Here are this year’s winners:

New African Woman of the Year: Fatoumata Jallow-Tambajan, Gambia
Vice-President of the Gambia, Minister of Women Affairs and a fierce human rights activist she’s rightfully claimed this award for her key contributions to the ouster of Gambia’s former long-term leader, Yahya Jammeh.

New African Woman in Civil Society: Chief Theresa Kachindamoto, Malawi
With over 300 child marriage annulments under her belt, you can bet Chief Kachindamoto is a force to be reckoned with. A strong advocate against the practice, she played a major role in influencing the Malawian government to outlaw child marriage altogether earlier this year.

AF-Women-Award-Individual-Graphic1.jpgNew African Women in Health, Science and Technology: Dr. Helena Ndume, Namibia
We can’t think of a doctor more deserving of a win. Dr. Helena Ndume is a game changing ophthalmologist and cataract surgeon who’s provided vision restoring surgery to over 35,000 Namibians for free.

New African Woman on the Rise (The Next Generation): Vivian Onano, Kenya
This avid youth activist (and ONE Member!) has called for improved girls rights and strongly encourages men to get involved in the fight for equal rights. As a UN Women Youth Advisor, it’s clear that she’s on the path to achieve her goals.

New African Woman in Politics and Public Office: Amina J. Mohammed, Nigeria
Years of experience have earned Amina a key position with the United Nations as its Deputy Secretary-General. The former Nigerian Minister of Environment played a big role in assessing how the Sustainable Development Goals and Millennium Development Goals would impact African women across the continent.

AF-Women-Award-Individual-Graphic2.jpgNew African Woman in Arts and Culture: Joan Okorodudu, Nigeria
Joan Okorodudu is the brains and force behind one of Africa’s fastest growing modeling agencies and is credited with raising the profile of Nigerian fashion to a global level.

New African Woman Award in Education: Tsitsi Masiyiwa, Zimbabwe
We know educating young girls and boys is one of the best ways to equip them for success in life. As the founder of the Higherlife Foundation, a non-profit organisation that provides vulnerable and orphaned children with scholarships which has already benefitted over 250,000 children, it’s clear Tsitsi Masiyiwa knows this too!

AF-Women-Award-Individual-Graphic4.jpgNew African Woman in Finance: Binta Touré Ndoye, Mali
Competition for this award was high, but Binta’s game changing work with Oragroup – a Malian banking enterprise – earned her the top spot.

New African Woman in Media: Amira Yahyaoui, Tunisia
This blogger and political activist is a brazen advocate for human rights, transparency and public accountability. Amira’s goal is to empower citizens to participate in civil society and to encourage governments to establish good governance and political ethics.

New African Woman in Agriculture: Tumusiime Rhoda Peace, Uganda
The former African Union Commissioner of Agriculture and Rural Development played a key role in promoting the importance of food security across the continent. Throughout her career she has championed women’s empowerment and poverty eradication.AF-Women-Award-Individual-Graphic3.jpgNew African woman Award in Business: Salwa Idrissi Akhannouch, Morocco
She’s one of Africa’s most successful businesswomen. Heading up the Akwa Group franchise group Askal landed her 68th place on Forbes Middle East’s 100 Most Powerful Arab Businesswomen.

New African Woman in Sport: Fatma Samoura, Senegal
Fatma’s not only the first female Secretary General of Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA), she is also the first non-European to hold the role!

Congratulations to all of the well-deserving winners and nominees!

 

Via ONE

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For a taste of what happens in The Core Mayo check out this great video from the showcase concert in 2016!

 

 

 

 

 

Via Music Generation

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18/05/2017

A national showcase of rock, pop and rap to draw dozens of young musicians to Limerick City

A national showcase of rock, pop and rap to draw dozens of young musicians to Limerick City

22 May 2017, Limerick City  Music Generation Limerick City will host the second annual Music Generation national teen showcase for rock, pop and rap on Sunday 28 May, 2017. Music Generation Live at the Milk Market is a free concert that will feature young musicians from Music Generation partnerships across Ireland, creating a platform for them to perform their own original music on stage for peers and audiences Limerick City Centre. The event will be MC’d by God Knows and MuRli, members of the 2016 RTÉ Choice Music Prize-winning group Rusangano Family, and will feature a special guest performance by Limerick City band Windings, all of whom work with Music Generation Limerick City as tutors.

‘Music Generation Live at the Milk Market’ is a Music Generation National Partnership Project presented by Music Generation Limerick City. The event will also include the official launch of a new CD recording by the young musicians involved in Music Generation Limerick’s City’s ‘Limerick Voices’ programme, which has been funded through the Music Generation/Arts Council Partnership.

Music Generation Live at the Milk Market: 2016

Ahead of the evening gig at the Milk Market – aka ‘The Big Top’ – each of the young musicians will take part in collaborative, creative workshops to develop their skills in composition, improvisation, ensemble playing and performance. Working both as a full collective and in smaller groups they will have an opportunity to make new connections and share learning with musicians from different Music Generation areas, and to work alongside tutors and mentors from other counties in Ireland. With the support of the professional Music Generation tutor team they will also compose an original piece of music, which will be premiered at the event on the main festival stage.

‘Music Generation Live at the Milk Market’ has developed out of Music Generation Limerick City’s enormously successful Limerick Voices programme, funded under the Music Generation/Arts Council Partnership. The programme involves some 120 singer-songwriters, producers and performers from Limerick City. A professionally-produced CD of the work written and recorded as part of the programme will be officially launched on the night, and will be made available for download in June. 

Check out some of the previous songs recorded as part of Limerick Voices on their SoundCloud Stream: 

Music Generation Limerick City is part of Music Generation – Ireland’s National Music Education Programme, initiated by Music Network, co-funded by U2, The Ireland Funds, the Department of Education and Skills and Local Music Education Partnerships. Locally, Music Generation Limerick City is managed by Limerick City Music Education Partnership and receives matched funding from a number of local organisations.

//ends

Music Generation Live at the Milk Market is a Music Generation National Partnership Project.

For more information about this and other initiatives at Music Generation Limerick City contact:

Boris Hunka, Coordinator
Music Generation Limerick City, VTOS Building, Presentation Court, Sexton Street, Limerick City.

T: 087 210 4583
E: boris.hunka@lcetb.ie
musicgenerationlimerickcity.com/

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Via Music Generation

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EDUCATION

How a female scientist collective is empowering girls in Sierra Leone

May 4 2017 | By: GUEST BLOGGER

GIRLS COUNT

Every girl counts.

130 million girls don’t have access to an education. So we’re asking the world to count them, one by one.

 
  

Story and photos by Cooper Inveen.

It’s a sunny afternoon on Freetown’s sandy beachfront, and 11-year-old Fatima Morenike is eating ice cream with Agnes Mimi Bengali, a Sierra Leonean biologist. Over the last year, Fatima and Agnes have met twice a month to touch base and talk science.

Fatima is one of two girls put forward by her school to take part in a mentorship program designed by STEM Women Sierra Leone – a local collective of 58 women in the fields of science, tech, engineering and mathematics dedicated to empowering young girls with a passion for science.

Fatima, left, and Agnes.

Students Fatima, left, and Gladys.

The group mentors 50 girls from all over the country, and of the 14 students that were eligible to take their secondary school entrance exams last July, each one passed with flying colors. Since her mother’s death in 2012, Fatima has been living with an aunt who doesn’t value education, so the encouragement she is receiving through the mentorship is life-changing.

Since she first met Agnes, Fatima has graduated from primary to junior secondary school and even been offered a scholarship to study in Nigeria from Sierra Leone’s First Lady.

STEM Women Sierra Leone was founded in April 2016 by Kumba Liliana Musa, a 27-year-old engineer from Freetown. Inspired by her father’s life-long commitment to women’s rights and frustrated by the lack of women in her field, Musa personally recruited dozens of local doctors, engineers, geologists and others to help form STEM Women, the first organization of its kind in a country where a quarter of adolescents are out of school, according to UNESCO. In December, she was chosen to receive the Queen’s Young Leadership Award, which she will personally receive from the Queen later this year.

From left: Fatima, Agnes, and another mentor, Gladys.

From left: Fatima, Gladys, and biologist and mentor Agnes.

“The goal is not only to get more girls involved in STEM, but also to improve STEM education [in Sierra Leone] itself,” says Kumba. “It makes no sense to just tell girls about our field when the educational system here is so lacking. I’ve been through it, and it did not prepare me at all for what I met in the field. So education is our primary focus.”

Over the course of the organization’s first year, members of STEM Women have visited more than two dozen schools to talk about careers in science and math. They also collected textbooks and other materials for their 50 mentees and held multiple events – all out of their own pockets. Additionally, they sent eight students to a week-long girls’ camp organized by the Office of the First Lady, where Fatima received her scholarship.

From left: Students Gladys and Fatima, with mentors Agnes and Nadia.

From left: Students Gladys and Fatima, with mentors Agnes and Nadia.

The challenges of working in a developing country are numerous. More traditional parents have been hesitant to support their daughters’ interests in science, and mentors struggle to communicate with students who don’t have access to cell phones. Agnes recalls filing a request for a bus from Sierra Leone’s Road Transit Authority in order to organize a field trip for the girls, which was denied, she said, on grounds that the department didn’t have any buses capable of going uphill.

As STEM Women continues to grow in Sierra Leone, the program plans to follow each girl through secondary school and on to college, with a university-level mentorship scheme currently in the works. By the organization’s first birthday in April, they also aim to launch a tutoring program with lesson plans and exercises specific to each student, based on their personal interests. If a student changes their mind about science in that time, it would be no wasted effort, as long as they learned something about life and what Sierra Leonean women are capable of.

Nadia, left, and Fatima.

Nadia, left, and Fatima.

Meanwhile, Fatima is certainly blossoming through her relationship with Agnes. “She is nice to me and makes learning fun,” she says. “Today I want to learn about electricity. I want to be a scientist too.”

It’s a big commitment from the women mentors, but Agnes shows their determination to improve things in their own country and to create a buzz in the sector. “Lots of people in our fields see more opportunity elsewhere, but there’s so much that could be done to improve things here, especially for our girls in STEM,” she says. “Not everyone can just get out and go. Someone has to stay and help the next generation.”

From left: Gladys, Nadia, and Fatima.

From left: Gladys, Nadia, and Fatima.

For Kumba, the most important things STEM Women can teach Sierra Leonean girls are to be cautious but never fearful and know that there’s nothing they are too small to do.

“You should always think things through,” says Kumba, “but my advice to any girl is that she should never be afraid to do what she thinks is right. Being a leader is about knowing both what to do and how you’re going to take action.

 

Via ONE

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CITIZENSHIP

US Will Still Be Top Donor of Refugee Aid in Trump Era, Nikki Haley Says

By Colleen Curry| May 22, 2017

nikki_haley_refugees_ap.jpg__1500x670_q85_crop_subsampling-2.jpgU.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley, speaks with Syrian refugee children, during a visit to the Zaatari Refugee Camp, Jordan, Sunday, May 21, 2017. (AP Photo/Raad Adayleh, Pool)

The foreign policy of US President Donald Trump continues to take shape this week as he and top officials make their first official trip abroad and unveil their proposed budget to set America’s priorities over the next year.

And in Jordan on Sunday, those priorities became slightly — if surprisingly — clearer, as the US Ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley, promised Syrian refugees that the US would remain the top donor to refugee programs in the world, according to the Associated Press.

"We're the No. 1 donor here through this crisis. That's not going to stop. We're not going to stop funding this," Haley said. "The fact that I'm here shows we want to see what else needs to be done."

Read More: More Than 40 Senators Sign Bipartisan Letter Saying Foreign Aid Cuts Will Make ‘America Less Safe’

Haley’s statement was surprising given the fact that both she and Trump have indicated that US funding to the UN will be cut in the 2018 budget, though she has said she thinks cuts could come from pulling back on peacekeeping missions around the world. The US has spent more than $6.5 billion in aid for Syrian refugees, according to the AP.

Her remarks also offered a hint at what’s to come in Trump’s proposed budget, set to be unveiled Tuesday, though Congress will ultimately decide the country’s funding priorities. She made the visit to the refugee camp in Jordan while Trump visited Saudi Arabia on Sunday to give a speech on Islam and terrorism to Sunni Muslim leaders there.

In Jordan, Haley spent time visiting with the more than 5 million Syrians who have fled the civil war that has torn apart their home country, as well as the aid workers offering support over the past seven years that the conflict has been ongoing.

Read More: The Details of Trump’s Proposed Foreign Aid Cuts Are Devastating

On the ground, she inspected stacks of food aid intended for a convoy into opposition-held territory in Syria that included boxes of peas and tuna and canned meat. She watched as refugees living in the Jordan camp had their eyes scanned by a computer system to manage food distribution.

She also joined a World Food Programme air-drop flight to bring supplies like cooking oil, lentils, and wheat to people in Deir el-Zour, an area controlled by President Bashar al Assad.

She said that US was not pulling back from helping Syrians, and was in fact engaging more to try and bring about an end to the conflict. And while she said she supported Trump’s proposal to stop allowing Syrian refugees into the US temporarily (it was later blocked by a federal court), she said a more important goal was getting refugees back home, and ensuring their homes were safe.

 
TAKE ACTION Send petitions, emails, or tweets to world leaders. Call governments or join rallies. We offer a variety of ways to make your voice heardGet Involved
 

Written by Colleen Curry

 

Colleen Curry is a senior editor at Global Citizen. She has covered domestic and international news for outlets including ABC News, VICE News, and The New York Times, with a particular focus on women's issues, criminal justice, and LGBT rights. She is also pursuing her Master's in Creative Writing, and has had nonfiction published by Sports Illustrated and Marie Claire.

 

Via Global Citizen

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Fighting fistula & bringing hope to Kenyan women
1

Fighting fistula & bringing hope to Kenyan women

18 May 2017 1:35PM UTC | By: CLEA GUY-ALLEN

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Tell G20 leaders that all girls count

 
  

Article and photographs by Siegfried Modola, a photojournalist based in Kenya. 

Obstetric Fistula is a severe medical condition affecting over a million women in developing countries, many of which are in Africa. The condition, caused by prolonged or failed childbirth, creates a constant leaking of urine, faeces, and blood as a result of a hole that forms between the vagina and bladder or rectum. It disproportionally affects poor women since they often give birth without medical help and do not have access to adequate medical care during or after labor.

Habiba Corodhia Mohamed (centre), 36, the Outreach Manager for Fistula FoundationÕs Action on Fistula programme in Kenya smiles after a meeting with a group of Fistula survivors and now health volunteers in the Mount Elgon region of western Kenya on April 28, 2015. Habiba works at the local level to educate communities about fistula and help identify and refer women for treatment. She also trains other community health workers in western Kenya to do the same. She is the founder of Women and Development Against Distress in Africa (WADADIA), a community based organization working in the western region of Kenya that provides psycho-social support, economic empowerment and reproductive health to women in need.

Habiba Corodhia Mohamed (centre) smiles after a meeting with a group of Fistula survivors and now health volunteers in the Mount Elgon region of western Kenya on April 28, 2015.

Women affected by fistula experience severe sociocultural stigmatisation within a community. Often these women are shunned or even sent away by their husbands, families and communities because of the shame associated with the condition.  They lose their social standing and most tragically, the ability to lead a dignified and independent life.

Even today, many of these women are not aware that fistula can be treated through a simple surgical repair procedure, since only 1 out of 50 women affected receive treatment each year.

Women suffering from Fistula are seen resting in the gardens of a health clinic in Eldoret, Kenya on April 30, 2015.

Women suffering from fistula are seen resting in the gardens of a health clinic in Eldoret, Kenya on April 30, 2015.

However, two women in western Kenya, where fistula is prevalent, have dedicated their lives to helping women suffering from the condition.

Habiba Corodhia Mohamed

“My goal is to reach out to as many women as possible through psychological support, economic empowerment and reproductive health”, explains Habiba Corodhia Mohamed, 36, who is the Outreach Manager for the Fistula Foundation’s Action on Fistula program in Kenya.

Habiba Corodhia Mohamed, 36, Outreach Manager for the Fistula FoundationÕs Action on Fistula program in Kenya poses for a photograph in her office in the town of Mumias in western Kenya on April 29, 2015. Habiba works at the local level to educate communities about fistula and help identify and refer women for treatment. She also trains other community health workers in western Kenya to do the same. She is the founder of Women and Development Against Distress in Africa (WADADIA), a community based organization working in the western region of Kenya that provides psycho-social support, economic empowerment and reproductive health to women in need.

Habiba Corodhia Mohamed, 36.

Habiba works at the local level to educate communities about fistula and to help identify and refer women for treatment. She is also the founder of Women and Development Against Distress in Africa (WADADIA), a community based organisation that runs health and economic programs to empower the poorest women.

Aziza Musa, 27, attends her farm near the village of Indori in Western Kenya on April 29, 2015. Aziza is a Fistula survivor. Through the help from the Women and Development Against Distress in Africa (WADADIA), founded by Habiba, she managed to cure herself and she now lives a stable and productive life.

Aziza Musa, 27, attends her farm near the village of Indori in Western Kenya on April 29, 2015. Aziza is a Fistula survivor. Through the help from the Women and Development Against Distress in Africa (WADADIA), founded by Habiba, she managed to cure herself and she now lives a stable and productive life.

Habiba told me about her first success story: “I began my career as a veterinary assistant but in 2008 I met a sex worker who was suffering from fistula. Her family sent her away because of her condition and she was forced into prostitution to survive. By giving her access to an education, I was able to support her transition out of prostitution.”

Habiba Corodhia Mohamed (left), the Outreach Manager for Fistula FoundationÕs Action on Fistula programme in Kenya talks to Florence Naliaka Matabili, 47, as she attends her farm in the Mount Elgon region of western Kenya. Florence is a Fistula survivor. Through the help from the Women and Development Against Distress in Africa (WADADIA), founded by Habiba, she managed to cure herself and she now lives a stable and productive life.

Habiba Corodhia Mohamed talks to Florence Naliaka Matabili, 47, as she attends her farm in the Mount Elgon region of western Kenya. Florence is a Fistula survivor. Through help from WADADIA, founded by Habiba, she managed to cure herself and she now lives a stable and productive life.

 Sarah Omega Kidangasi

“Let the trauma end with me, so that no other woman has to suffer as I suffered.” ~ Sarah Omega Kidangasi

Sarah Omega Kidangasi, 39, poses for a photograph in a health clinic in Eldoret, Kenya on April 30, 2015. Sarah is an advocate for the Campaign to End Fistula, served as a senior spokesperson with UNFPA, and is Outreach Manager in Western Kenya for One By OneÕs LetÕs End Fistula initiative. She now serves as Communications Officer for the Fistula Foundation Action on Fistula program in Kenya.

Sarah Omega Kidangasi, 39, poses for a photograph in a health clinic in Eldoret, Kenya.

Sarah Omega Kidangasi, 39, is a fistula survivor and an advocate for the Campaign to End Fistula. She served as a senior spokesperson with UNFPA, and is an Outreach Manager in Western Kenya for One By One’s Let’s End Fistula initiative and Communications Officer for the Fistula Foundation Action on Fistula program in Kenya. She recounts her story:

“I was orphaned at eleven. and although I performed very well in school I had to drop out to work to support my siblings. A religious leader in my community raped me when I was nineteen and overnight my life drastically changed for the worst as I tried to deal with the rape and the unwanted pregnancy. It was not easy to cope.

Janet Anyango, 23, attends poultry near the town of Mumias in western Kenya on April 29, 2015. Janet suffers from Fistula and she is being taken care of and hosted by health volunteer and Fistula survivor Nerena Auma through the help of the Women and Development Against Distress in Africa (WADADIA).

Janet Anyango, 23, attends poultry near the town of Mumias in western Kenya on April 29, 2015. Janet suffers from fistula and she is being cared for by the Women and Development Against Distress in Africa (WADADIA).

When it was time for me to deliver my child, I was in labor for more than 20 hours before I was able to reach a health facility. Once there, I was left laboring alone for an additional 18 hours before a gynecologist intervened. By this time, I had already lost my baby. In the days that followed I realized I couldn’t hold my urine anymore. I had developed a fistula.

My life became miserable. I wanted to die as every day was a never-ending struggle to cope with this condition. The rape, the loss of my baby, and the constant leaking of urine, which caused a foul smell and painful sores, felt to me like I was being punished for existing, for being a woman.

I lived with fistula for twelve years before meeting a doctor who told me that this was a curable condition. After I was cured through surgery, I decided to empower other women with this condition.”

Sarah Omega Kidangasi, 39, talks to a woman suffering from Fistula in a health clinic in Eldoret, Kenya on April 30, 2015. Sarah is an advocate for the Campaign to End Fistula, served as a senior spokesperson with UNFPA, and is Outreach Manager in Western Kenya for One By OneÕs LetÕs End Fistula initiative. She now serves as Communications Officer for the Fistula Foundation Action on Fistula program in Kenya

Sarah Omega Kidangasi talks to a woman suffering from Fistula in a health clinic in Eldoret, Kenya on April 30, 2015.

Sarah has subsequently reached and helped thousands of women suffering from fistula during her career

Tell G20 leaders that all girls count

G20 leaders, 130 million girls are not in school. That’s unacceptable. I’m counting on you to put in place adequate financing and policies to help ensure that every girl, in every country, gets the education she deserves. I believe girls count - I hope you do too.

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18 May 2017 1:35PM UTC

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The power of the individual: How volunteers, counsellors, and doctors helped Jane triumph over obstetric fistula
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GIRLS AND WOMEN

The power of the individual: How volunteers, counsellors, and doctors helped Jane triumph over obstetric fistula

December 19 2016 | By: GUEST BLOGGER

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Join the fight against extreme poverty

 
  

By Alexandra Cairns, Kupona Foundation

When we talk about global health challenges, we often talk in big numbers. As of August this year, there were 7.4 billion people in the world. Up to 5 billion people lack access to basic surgical services like safe anesthesia, surgery for correctable impairments, or C-sections. Further estimates suggest that 2 million women and girls worldwide are living with an untreated obstetric fistula, which causes chronic incontinence as a result of prolonged obstructed labor. These are big numbers that trigger a very common reaction in many of us: how on earth could I do anything about that?

It’s easy to get lost in the big picture, and to feel suffocated by staggering statistics. For me, traveling to Tanzania to visit Kupona Foundation’s sister organization, CCBRT, is the greatest remedy. These trips restore my perspective and root the big statistics into something tangible. These trips remind me of the power of the individual.

Patients in the fistula ward at CCBRT Disability Hospital. (Photo credit: Sala Lewis, 2016)

Patients in the fistula ward at CCBRT Disability Hospital. (Photo credit: Sala Lewis, 2016)

On my most recent trip, I met Jane*, a 15-year-old girl who developed obstetric fistula when she was 14. Jane was sexually assaulted by a man in her village, and was then forced to leave school and marry him. Not long after, she became pregnant. When the time came to deliver, her husband refused to take her to the hospital. Jane was in labor for days until her aunt intervened and sought medical attention. Jane’s baby boy did not survive, and she was left with an obstetric fistula: leaking urine uncontrollably due to the damage caused by the prolonged labor. When he realized Jane was leaking, her husband ended the marriage and sent her back to her parents.

Before the age of 16, Jane has lost a child and has been forced to get married. She has scars on her arms from her husband’s violent outbursts. She has missed out on years of education. She has been abandoned by friends due to the stigma of obstetric fistula. Jane is so young, and yet has experienced more trauma than anyone should have to face in a lifetime.

There are clearly many complex issues at play here. Jane was happy in school and wanted to continue her studies before she was forced to leave. Now, years later, her family cannot afford to send her back. The first steps to protect young girls like Jane from marriage in Tanzania have been taken, with a Constitutional Court ruling in July this year banning marriage to anyone under the age of 18.Attitudes and cultural practices that have been entrenched in communities for generations will take much longer to change. However, the fact that Jane is with us, receiving treatment, counseling and eventually sexual and reproductive health education gives me hope that the course of her future is changing.

For me, Jane’s story is a victory for the power of the individual. Jane’s aunt found the strength to protect Jane and get her the help she needed. A volunteer ambassador referred Jane to CCBRT for fistula treatment, and went out of her way to give Jane something to eat on the journey. A fellow fistula patient helped Jane find her way around the hospital when she arrived, and made her feel safe. A surgeon has repaired her fistula, a counselor is supporting her through her recovery, and a donor made all of this possible. Each individual made a big difference in Jane’s life.

Having access to health care can have a tremendous impact on a woman’s life that extends beyond just health care. Learn more about how the Kupona Foundation does that here: kuponafoundation.org

*Name has been changed.

Take a stand for girls and women like Jane: Join ONE in the fight against poverty and preventable disease.

A communications and development specialist, Alexandra Cairns has spent the last five years working with organizations in the UK, USA and Tanzania to shine a spotlight on the health challenges facing our global community, and to enable innovative, context-driven solutions that can change the status quo. Alexandra is currently working with Kupona Foundation leadership to mobilize support for the sustainable growth of life-changing disability and maternal and newborn healthcare programs in Tanzania.

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GIRLS & WOMEN

This Woman First Escaped Slavery. Then She Tackled Mount Everest.

May 23, 2017

Brought to you by: Thomson Reuters Foundation

 

sex trafficking victim scales mt everestImage: Kanchi Maya Tamang, a Nepali survivor of human trafficking, poses for a photo after climbing Mount Everest in Nepal to highlight the dangers of trafficking and modern day slavery. Photo taken on May 20, 2017. Handout via TRF/Pemba Dorje Sherpa/UN Women

By Nita Bhalla

NEW DELHI, May 22 (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - A Nepali woman who was trafficked, exploited and abused as a maid in Egypt has conquered Mount Everest in a bid to highlight the dangers of trafficking in her impoverished Himalayan homeland where thousands are sold into slavery every year.

Kanchhi Maya Tamang, 28, is thought to be the first survivor of human trafficking to scale the world's highest mountain.

UN Women in Nepal - which supported Tamang's expedition - said in a statement on Monday that she reached Everest's peak on Saturday.

"My mission has first and foremost been to stop forced migration of women and girls from my district, which is listed as the top district for trafficking of women and girls in Nepal," Tamang radioed from Mount Everest Base camp, according to the statement.

"I want to foster initiatives that create local employment opportunities and empower women, both those facing forced migration and returnees like myself. We must empower girls - give them a rope, show them a rock, then ask them to climb it."

Related StoriesMarch 10, 2017CHIME FOR CHANGEBreaking Free: Native American Women Tell How They Survived Sex TraffickingFeb. 14, 2017Thomson Reuters FoundationChild Sex-Trafficking Victims Treated as Criminals in Most US States, Advocates Say

Nepal's National Human Rights Commission says up to 9,500 people were rescued from traffickers in 2014/15, a rise of almost 12 percent from the previous year.

But activists say the figures are a gross underestimate of the problem, particularly after two massive quakes struck Nepal in 2015, leaving many people vulnerable to traffickers promising a better life overseas.

Criminal gangs in Nepal dupe impoverished women and girls into working as slaves in urban homes in neighbouring India, as well as countries in the Middle East, while others are sold into brothels. Men are trafficked to work as manual labourers.

Tamang, who is from a village in Nepal's central district of Sindhupalchowk, was trafficked to India and then onto Egypt, where she worked as a domestic help for six years.

She was denied her monthly salary and faced verbal and mental abuse from her employer before managing to escape and return to Nepal.

Since then she has worked to prevent women and girls in her district from suffering the same fate and has become a prominent voice in her community, promoting girl's education and advocating for more opportunities.

Tamang said she wanted to climb the 8,848-metre (29,029 ft) summit to show women and girls in Nepal that they can achieve anything if given the chance.

Accompanied by a team of 20 people and led by Pemba Dorje Sherpa, who holds a record for the fastest ascent, Tamang reached the peak at 6.00 a.m. local time on May 20, and held up a poster which read: "We are people not property. Stop human trafficking."

Related StoriesJan. 20, 2017Thomson Reuters FoundationChildren of Impoverished Tea Garden Workers are Being Tricked into Sex Trafficking

"My win is a win for all women and girls," said Tamang. "And my mission is to contribute to a discrimination-free Nepal where all girls and women have freedom and an enabling environment to realise their full human potential."

(Reporting by Nita Bhalla @nitabhalla, Editing by Emma Batha. Please credit the Thomson Reuters Foundation, the charitable arm of Thomson Reuters, that covers humanitarian news, women's rights, trafficking, property rights, climate change and resilience. Visithttp://news.trust.org )

 
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CITIZENSHIP

Lebanon Just Celebrated Its Very First Gay Pride Parade

By Gabriella Canal| May 25, 2017

 

After years of facing stigmatization and homophobia, members of the Lebanese LGBT community defiantly raised their rainbow flags during the country’s very first pride celebration last week.

Inspired by pride parades in Amsterdam and Prague, Hadi Damien —  the initiator and organizer of Beirut Pride —  began planning the event last summer to coincide with the International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia, and Biphobia on May 17.

The event was made possible by several NGOs, artists, and nightclubs that came together to “improve the visibility of LGBT people across multiple venues and audiences.” It took place in Beirut, the country’s capital and largest city.

Read More: Gay Rights Report Card: How Does Your Country Measure Up?

“Beirut Pride is a happy, friendly, constructive platform that invites people to express themselves, in an attempt to contribute to our liberation from the destructive hate that poisons our country and forces many fellow citizens out toward other countries that guarantee their basic rights,” a statement on the Beirut Pride website reads.

A 2007 study conducted by the Pew Research Center found that 79% of Lebanese people believe “homosexuality should be rejected by society.” As a reflection of that sentiment, civil marriages have yet to be fully legalized and Article 543, which prohibits sexual acts “contrary to the order of nature,” has yet to be repealed.

But policy change is not what the organizers behind Beirut Pride wanted to accomplish.

“We’re not coming with an attempt to be provocative or aggressive at all,” Damien told VOA, adding that the goal of the week was to communicate what he called a “totally universal” anti-discriminatory message.

Read More: Banned From School, Nearly Forced into Marriage: How a Nepali Girl Is Fighting for Gay Pride

From May 14 to 21, exhibitions, storytelling, concerts, parties, performances, and screenings were held in Beirut’s cultural centers. In Mar Mikhael, the city’s popular nightlife district, rainbow flags flew high outside 18 bars.

Not all of the events were entirely accepted, however.

One unofficial LGBT event was canceled after The League of Muslim Scholars, a Salafist group, used social media to threaten the day-long display of LGBT presentations.

Read More: Love is Love: NYC, the World Celebrate LGBT Pride

“Our day was canceled because the hotel received threats and the Islamist organization put pressure on the management, which became afraid for the security,” Causette Maalouf, Proud Lebanon’s advocacy officer, explained.

Another Lebanese LGBT activist, Lea Freiha, acknowledged that an event of this nature would be nearly impossible to host in any other part of the country.

And yet, despite the threats, a reported 4,000 people took to the streets to celebrate.

“I thought people would be closeted or scared to come out, attend, and raise awareness of the cause,” Freiha told VOX. “I didn’t expect this.”

Here are some pictures the LGBT Pride Celebration:

 
Gabriella Canal

Written by Gabriella Canal

 

Gabriella Canal studied Journalism and International Relations at the University of Miami. She has built a record of seeking out opportunities she feels strongly passionate about, and that require her to help inspire change. Social justice, writing, photography and videography are her passions. Sharing the stories of those affected by the world's biggest challenges in an effort to alleviate their conditions is her mission.

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CITIZENSHIP

Barack Obama’s Speech in Berlin Has an Important Message for Global Citizens

By Phineas Rueckert| May 25, 2017

obama-merkel-meeting.jpg__1500x670_q85_crop_subsampling-2.jpgAP Photo/Markus Schreiber

In his first trip to Europe since leaving office, former president Barack Obama spoke frankly about the dangers of isolationist politics and cutting foreign aid just two days after President Donald Trump released a proposed budget pushing for both. 

Obama met with German Chancellor Angela Merkel at the spot where Ronald Reagan famously told Soviet General Secretary Mikhail Gorbachev to “tear down that wall!” during the Cold War. 

Take Action: Tell the U.S. to Preserve Their Commitments to The Paris Agreement On Climate Change

While Obama didn’t mention his successor specifically, his speech championed openness and compassion in foreign affairs as well as the importance of reaching out to those in need. Trump’s budget proposed slashing foreign aid by 30%, redirecting the remaining money toward national security aims, and putting “America First.” 

“In the eyes of God, a child on the other side of the ocean is no less worthy of compassion than my own child,” Obama said. “We can’t distinguish between them in terms of their worth and their inherent dignity and that they’re deserving of shelter and love and education and opportunity.”

Read More: How Donald Trump's Proposed Cuts to US Foreign Aid Actually Endanger America

He also spoke of the importance of expressing “humanity and compassion and solidarity with those need,” not necessarily only out of a sense of charity, but also for the purposes of national security. 

“When we provide development aid to Africa, or we are involved in conflict resolution, those things we do not just for charity, not just because they’re the right thing to do, or out of kindness, but also because if there are disruptions in these countries, if there’s conflict, if there’s bad governance, if there’s war, if there’s poverty, in this new world that we live in, we can’t isolate ourselves, we can’t hide behind a wall,” he said.  

Read More: Trump Administration's Proposed Budget Slashes Foreign Aid, Boosts National Security

Trump famously campaigned on a platform of closing the border between the United States and Mexico by building a wall, and curtailing immigration through “extreme vetting” of refugees and asylum seekers. 

Obama’s speech in Berlin was a repudiation of that worldview. It also put into words the incredible need for foreign assistance in developing countries around the world, and reminded listeners of the importance of strong, global leadership to combat the world’s most pressing challenges. 

 
TAKE ACTION Send petitions, emails, or tweets to world leaders. Call governments or join rallies. We offer a variety of ways to make your voice heardGet Involved
Phineas Rueckert

Written by Phineas Rueckert

 

Phineas Rueckert is a writer at Global Citizen. He graduated from Macalester College with a degree in Political Science and International Studies, and spent the past year teaching English in Toulouse, France. He is originally from Brooklyn, New York.

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Refugees deserve better. Sign the open letter to President Trump calling on him to reverse his executive order on Refugees.
Mr President, we don’t support your policy on refugees. An open letter from Global Citizens: Dear President Trump, Around the world, 8 million Global Citizens are proudly citizens of both their nations, and the whole world. Four million of us are in the United States of America, and today, we want to convey our deep disappointment and disagreement in your Executive Order on “extreme vetting of refugees”. As Global Citizens, we know that opposing viewpoints are a vital part of any robust political discussion. We work with all sides of politics to ensure that governments continue play a leading role in ending extreme poverty. However, there are also basic values that we believe are foundational to the fabric of American democracy - like not discriminating on the basis of religion and nationality. You crossed that line through your Executive Order on refugees. Refugees are the most vulnerable fellow citizens on our planet, fleeing unimaginable horrors of conflict, persecution and disaster. Americans know this, because we have repeatedly opened our arms to those seeking safety - those fleeing the Holocaust, the Cuban Revolution, Communism, and dictators over decades. American leadership created the Refugee Convention, and today, you are walking away from it by instigating a policy that explicitly discriminates on the basis of religion and nationality. Your Executive Order suspends immigration to the U.S. from seven countries, each with a Muslim majority - Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen. You stated that this not a ban on Muslims - however you made a specific exemption for those of a “minority religion” in each of these countries - a phrase that can only be interpreted to exclude Muslims. Mr. President, a refugee is a vulnerable human being, regardless of faith or nationality. America already employs the most stringent vetting and background checks for refugees on the planet. Your Executive Order tars citizens of these countries with the accusation of terrorism. None of the perpetrators of the major US terrorist attacks carried out in the name of Islam in the past 15 years have come from the nations specified in the executive order. Your stated reason for the policy is untrue, unfair, and un-American. It walks away from decades of American leadership on refugees, and in fact increases the dangers of terrorism. It goes against the very words that welcomed successive generations of those fleeing persecution to our shores at the Statue of Liberty: “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, the wretched refuse of your teeming shore, send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed, to me: I lift my lamp beside the golden door.” Mr. President, we call on you to reverse course immediately, Yours sincerely, Global Citizens
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OPINIONCITIZENSHIP

Why President Trump's Phone Call to Rodrigo Duterte Is More Than Troubling

By Joe McCarthy| May 25, 2017

 

Duterte-Refugees-Welcome-AP.jpgImage: AP Photo/Aaron Favila

In the final week of April, US President Donald Trump gave the President of the Philippines, Rodrigo Duterte, a call to encourage him on his campaign to eradicate drug use.

“Keep up the good work,” Trump told Duterte, according to a transcript of the conversation obtained by The Intercept this week. “You are doing an amazing job.”

“Good work” and “amazing job” are not the phrases that often come to mind when describing Duterte’s self-professed war on drugs.

Duterte has been accused by human rights organizations and the United Nations of waging a “murderous war on the poor,” which has killed more than 7,000 purported drug users and sellers in the first seven months of his presidency — more than 1,000 per month.

Read More: Why the Inquiry Into Trump and Russia Is Critical for Global Democracy

Many of these murders have been carried out by self-deputized “death squads” that Duterte popularized as the mayor of Davao, many of the victims have had evidence planted on them after being killed within their own homes and dragged into the street, and many within the police force are profiting from this massacre and from secret detention and torture centers.

Duterte himself has vowed to slaughter every last drug user, compared himself to Hitler, and bragged about personally murdering people.

None of this is mentioned in the casual phone call, which seems designed to re-establish diplomatic ties with the leader who, after lashing out at former president Barack Obama, said he was going to turn away from the US and toward China for economic support.

After all, the US is the Philippines’ third-largest trading partner and two-way trade between the countries has increased by 25% over the past two decades.

But, according to critics of the call, the controversial events surrounding the conversation cannot be overlooked.

“Endorsing his methods is a celebration of the death of the poor and vulnerable,” John Sifton, the Asia advocacy director for Human Rights Watch, told The Intercept.

Trump’s tacit endorsement of the leader accords with his secretary of state’s position on human rights — that there are more important issues and it shouldn’t be focused on.

Read More: Bodyguards of Turkish President Beat Up Protesters in DC

His warm words don’t delve into specifics — he vaguely praises Duterte for empowering law enforcement and for tackling drugs, stances that his own attorney general, Jeff Sessions, has embraced (in far less sensational ways), and for the way that Duterte, like Trump, came to power on a wave anti-establishment sentiment.

Which begs the question — how did feelings toward the “establishment” sour so much that such a brutal strongman could be elected president? And how does Duterte still have an approval rating that hovers around 80%?

The Philippines, it turns out, has a long history of corruption and grinding poverty that has eroded public trust in institutions.

Transparency International ranks it the 35th most corrupt country in the world and the ASEAN Trade Union Council says that it has the highest rate of economic and social inequality in Asia.

The Philippines had a poverty rate of 21.6% in 2015, and many Filipinos end up working abroad to send money home to relatives, making it the 3rd biggest recipient of remittances in the world.

Read More: These Are the Worst Countries to Be a Journalist Today

Many within the country see pervasive corruption as the driver of persistent inequality. Duterte’s predecessor Benigno Aquino managed to become president with the slogan “If there’s no corruption, there’s no poverty.”

Aquino vowed to fight the “pork-barrel” politics of the Padrino system, a seemingly impenetrable network of nepotism and cronyism, that has dominated Filipino government ever since the US granted the island nation independence and oligarchic families filled the power vacuum.

This inequality was most pronounced during the reign of the dictator Ferdinand Marcos, who violently cracked down on dissidents, but it continued after democracy was established in 1986 and ensuing presidents from elite backgrounds enforced the status quo of cronyism.

Benigno Aquino was another member of the political elite — his mother ruled the country following Marcos’ 20-year rule — and although he oversaw economic growth and some crackdowns on corruption, his reputation went south after failing to sufficiently address a multi-million dollar corruption scandal involving scores of politicians.   

Duterte was able to rise to power attacking the elite and corruption. Now, he is taking advantage of this very lack of institutional credibility to enact his own agenda — one far bloodier than any of his predecessors attempted.

Read More: Philippines President Issues Strict New Ban on Smoking

Rather than introduce poverty-fighting measures, Duterte, who got his first taste of politics during the Marcos reign, is deepening poverty by expanding his violent and extrajudicial campaign against drugs in the country’s poorest neighborhoods.  

Indeed, there seems to be two different wars on drugs happening.

The poor have their homes raided and are killed without trial. The poor are extorted for bribes to save loved ones. The poor are deprived of mothers and fathers, sisters and brothers, who earn incomes that keep families afloat. The poor are forced to pay for funerals that they can’t afford.

Meanwhile, the wealthy live in neighborhoods where vigilante gangs don’t roam. When the wealthy are arrested, police follow arrest warrant protocols. And the president himself has said the the drugs favored by the rich — cocaine and heroin — are less of a priority than the main drug consumed by the poor — Shabu, a methamphetamine.    

Prisons are overflowing with alleged drug offenders, the country’s main critic of this war on drugs has been jailed, and the rule of law has essentially been suspended. If Duterte wants to eradicate drugs, an estimated 2% of the population will have to be erased from society.

As all this happens, 50% of the country’s families consider themselves poor. Meanwhile, the country’s economy is still thrumming along nicely, growing by 6.4% in the first quarter of 2017.

Clearly, Duterte is not a leader anyone should look up to — his tactics defy the principals of democracy that the US was founded on.

 
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Joe McCarthy

Written by Joe McCarthy

 

Joe McCarthy is a Content Creator at Global Citizen. He believes apathy is the biggest threat to creating a more just world and tries his hardest to stay open-minded and curious. Living in New York keeps him aware of how interconnected our world is, how every action has ripples.

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HEALTH

1 Million People With AIDS in Africa Will Die if Trump's Budget Is Enacted, Experts Say

By James O'Hare| May 25, 2017

 

The Trump administration is calling for a $1.1 billion cut to HIV-treatment programs in Sub-Saharan Africa and a $524 million cut to providing contraception to developing nations. The reduced spending may save American taxpayers some money, but would come at a tremendous cost of human life – more than one million lives to be more precise, experts said Tuesday.

The United States currently spends more than $6 billion on antiretroviral drugs that benefit about 11.5 million people living with AIDS, according to the New York Times. Reducing that funding by 20% could have dire consequences.

Global Fund estimates that every $100 million saves about 133,000 lives. AmfAR, meanwhile, calculates the funding cuts could cost more than a million lives and orphan more than 300,000 children, the Times reports.

Take Action: Help End AIDS, Malaria, and Tuberculosis For Good

“These are lifesaving interventions, and the levels of reductions will significantly curtail service delivery,” said Jen Kates, a vice president of the Kaiser Family Foundation.

About 37 million people in the world are living with HIV as of 2015, of which nearly 2 million are children, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). As of mid-2016, 18.2 million people worldwide are receiving antiretroviral treatment.

Hari Sastry, director of the State Department’s Office of US Foreign Assistance Resources, told reporters that people currently benefitting from these programs will continue to receive treatment in spite of the funding cuts, but did not explain how exactly it would happen, according to the Times.

The cuts to providing contraception, though less in monetary value, could be more detrimental in the long term. As more people reach sexual maturity, the lack of proper contraceptives could lead to more HIV cases as access to treatment becomes less available.

Melinda Gates, co-founder of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation criticized the proposed cuts in a Facebook post. As Gates points out, reducing access to contraception would have devastating results, especially for women.

“The data shows that this drastic step would lead to more unintended pregnancies, more maternal deaths, and more missed opportunities for the 225 million women who do not want to get pregnant but still lack access to contraceptives,” she wrote. “This budget threatens to trap millions more families in a cycle of poverty.”

About 70% of pregnant women living with HIV have received antiretroviral treatment, according to the WHO.

Related StoriesMay 24, 2017Critics Slam Trump Administration’s Budget Proposal for Being 'Cruel' Toward the PoorMay 23, 2017Trump Administration's Proposed Budget Slashes Foreign Aid, Boosts National Security

In spite of the alarming analysis, it’s highly unlikely the budget will be approved. Even as Congress pens its own budget, funding for HIV/AIDS treatment should be safe.  

The President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (Pepfar), enacted by George W. Bush in 2004 and expanded Barack Obama, funds AIDS treatments in more than 60 countries and has strong, bipartisan support.

Approximately 1.1 million people died of AIDS in 2015. The same year saw roughly 2.1 million new HIV infections, 150,000 of them children. Though the rate of new HIV infections has plateaued in recent years, massive funding cuts to global health initiatives threaten to undo the progress that has been made.  

Global Citizen is campaigning end HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, and malaria for good, and to make global health a priority for world leaders. Join us by taking action here.

Related StoriesMay 23, 2017America’s Poor Would Be Hit Hardest by Trump’s 2018 BudgetMay 22, 2017Trump-Obsessed Media Is Ignoring a Massive Famine, WFP Chief Says

 
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Written by James O'Hare

 

James is an Editorial Intern at Global Citizen. He believes education is the starting point in working for social justice and hopes to someday eliminate the spectacle in American politics. He habitually quotes Mitch Hedberg and believes there should be a national holiday in honor of whoever invented chicken-bacon-ranch pizza.

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CITIZENSHIP

Trump's Travel Ban to Stay Suspended With Federal Appeals Ruling

By Cassie Carothers| May 25, 2017

president_donald_trump.jpg__1500x670_q85_crop_subsampling-2.jpg

The Trump administration’s attempt to limit who can enter the US suffered another blow Thursday after a federal appeals court upheld a lower court’s decision to temporarily suspend the executive order, saying it “drips with religious intolerance, animus and discrimination.”

The latest travel ban restricted visitors from six Muslim-majority countries — Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen, which the federals appeals court in Richmond, Va., ruled illegally targeted Muslims.

Read More: Refugee Executive Order Puts Trump on the Wrong Side of History

This is the second version of the executive order. President Donald Trump first signed an executive order in January which banned all Syrian refugees for 120 days and banned for 90 days all visas for people from Iran, Syria, Iraq, Sudan, Libya, Somalia, and Yemen. 

That ruling resulted in mass chaos at airports as people who were midair when the ban was signed were not allowed in the US despite having visas. Protests erupted at airports all around the US.

That executive order was almost immediately challenged in court, and eventually was suspended after the US Court of Appeals in the Ninth Circuit upheld a lower court’s ruling.

Read More:  Trump Targets Refugees in Latest Executive Order

The Trump administration soon put forward another executive order, which included more clear language about people holding permanent visas, or green cards, being allowed to enter the US and also removed Iraq from the list of countries that was banned. 

Lawsuits were quickly filed in Hawaii and Maryland against the new order, which was temporarily suspended, and then a federal judge in Hawaii extended the  suspension.

Today, Chief Judge Roger Gregory wrote in the court’s 10-to-3 decision to uphold the suspension of the travel ban that the executive order was “steeped in animus and directed at a single religious group.”

The Trump administration will have to decide now if it wants to appeal the court’s decision to the Supreme Court.

 
Cassie Carothers

Written by Cassie Carothers

 

Cassie Carothers is the Editorial Director of Global Citizen. She has more than 10 years experience covering national and international news as a digital journalist, having worked at Fox News, the New York Post, and Yahoo News. She grew up in Ohio and graduated from Miami University after studying journalism, politics, and marketing. She’s been a vegetarian for 18 years, and believes strongly that a diet is a key part of sustainable living.

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A huge congratulations to the brilliant Reelig from Music Generation Carlow who represented Music Generation today as Young Ambassadors at the launch of the Creative Ireland Local Authority Culture & Creativity Plans in Dublin Castle, and to their tutors Áine Donohue and Ciarán Somers!

They performed a roof-raising set for a packed House of Representatives from Local Authorities and Government Departments, including An Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Minister for Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs Heather Humphreys.

They did themselves and their county so proud. Next up for Reelig? the Music Generation Carlow Gala Concert, tonight at the VISUAL Centre for Contemporary Art and The George Bernard Shaw Theatre!!

 

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the joshua tree tour

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Several months ago, when U2 announced their Joshua Tree tour, I knew I had to figure out how to get tickets.  The tickets actually weren't for me.  I like U2 a lot, but I wouldn't call myself a superfan; that said, their music certainly weaves in and out of the soundtrack of my youth.  However, I fully admit that I'm am a superfan of the lead singer, Bono -- he is one of the founders of The ONE Campaign, an organization whose mission is to fight extreme poverty and preventable disease, particularly in Africa.  I've worked for several years with ONE, and have traveled with them several times to Africa to show the good work that is happening in various countries, including Kenya, Ethiopia and Malawi.  

But the tickets were actually for my daughter, Alex.  She's an avid guitarist, and The Edge is one of her guitar idols.  And I figured that if you're a 13-year-old guitarist, getting to watch one of your idols play might be a cool thing to do.  

I was afraid that tickets would sell out faster than I could get my hands on them, so I decided to see if a friend of mine, who works at ONE, could figure out a way to get me into a "back door" of some kind, so I could purchase tickets.  "I'm thrilled to pay for the nosebleed section," I told her.  "The seats don't have to be great.  I'd just like Alex to be in the same room as The Edge."

"I got you covered," said my friend.  "Leave it to me."

And man, she totally hooked us up.  Somehow Alex and I found ourselves on the floor right in front of the stage at the U2 concert here in Houston last night.

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It was, unsurprisingly, an incredible show -- they sound as good as they ever did, and the songs hold up after all this time.  Alex plum lost her mind -- every now and then she'd turn to me with a huge grin, and start jumping up and down and clapping, especially if The Edge came anywhere near us.  And while I thoroughly enjoyed the show, I had a bit of an epiphany about Bono and the band while I watched them perform.

So as I mentioned, I've always liked U2's music, and I love Bono.  But I realized that I had always assumed Bono was primarily a musician -- a rock star, a singer -- who also happened to be an activist in his off-time.  Like, U2 and Bono were first and foremost about making music; the activism was just something that they did, because it was the right thing to do.  Sure, some of their music had activist overtones, but that wasn't the primary reason that they did what they did.  They were in the game because they wanted to create music.

But last night, it suddenly dawned on me that perhaps I was dead wrong.  That perhaps I had it backwards.

I've started to believe that really, Bono and U2 are full-on activists, who happen to use music as their medium.  Everything, from their lyrics, to the mind-blowing visuals behind them, to the messages that they shared between songs, was purposeful and intentional.  They talked about feminism.  They talked about the Syrian refugee crisis.  They shared statistics on the fight against HIV/AIDS.  They talked about love and hate and what it means to care for each other.

All this to say that the concert was amazing, not just because the music was great -- although it was, make no mistake -- but because at various points it felt like a movement.  Church.  A revival, maybe.  Even a bit like a TED talk with music -- and people didn't even know they were being taught.

Anyway.

Here are some of my favourite shots that I took last night.  (Incidentally, these were all shot with my little Sony point-and-shoot -- SLRs weren't allowed in the arena, so I put this little powerhouse of a camera through its paces.)

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On the way home from the concert, Alex said, "Every time The Edge came near us, he got me shook."  I think that's a good thing.

On the way home from the concert, Alex said, "Every time The Edge came near us, he got me shook."  I think that's a good thing.

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So huge thank you to the ONE Campaign for the amazing experience -- you created a memory of a lifetime or me, and even more importantly, for Alex.  And to all of you:  if you have a way to see this concert, seriously, make it happen -- especially if you happen to be a photographer or a cinematographer.  The visuals in this concert are insane.  And of course, please consider adding your voice and joining ONE by clicking here.  Your information remains confidential, and ONE never asks for your money, just your voice. 


There's no end to grief - that's how I know there's no end to love. That's what I'm holding on to.

- BONO, WEDNESDAY, MARCH 24, 2017, ON THE BOMBING IN MANCHESTER.


 

 

 


may 25, 2017

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OPINIONGIRLS & WOMEN

Why People Are Saying the Manchester Attack Was an Attack on Girls & Women

By Yosola Olorunshola| May 25, 2017

Brought to you by: CHIME FOR CHANGE

manchester-terror-attack-memorial.jpg__1500x670_q85_crop_subsampling-2.jpgPeople attend a vigil in Albert Square, Manchester, England May 23, 2017, the day after the suicide attack at an Ariana Grande concert that left 22 people dead as it ended on Monday night.
Kirsty Wigglesworth/AP

It is unlikely we will ever know the motive behind the terror attack in Manchester that took place on Monday 22nd May, beyond a desire to unleash chaos and destruction. The brutal attack claimed the lives of 22 people , targeting a concert of Ariana Grande, a young female artist, with predominantly young female fans. 

Was this a deliberate plan? To attack women and girls, and everything their freedom symbolises? Various sources have pointed out that the concert was part of Ariana Grande’s tour to promote her album “Dangerous Woman.” Music critics point to the youthful, confident sexuality of her lyrics as well as her self-confessed feminism as a sign of why she and her fans may have been targeted. 

The worldview is that ISIS is deeply misogynistic. Violence against women forms part of their tyrannical ambitions. In its attempt to eliminate the Yazidi people in northern Iraq, 5,000 Yazidi women were captured and forced into sex slavery, repeatedly raped and tortured by soldiers of so-called Islamic State.

Read More: Nadia Murad Tells Her Story — Escaping Sex Slavery to Protect Yazidi Women

In their propaganda, ISIS say women must be married between the ages of nine and 17 — in short, when they are largely still children. The thought of young girls dancing away to music by a liberated young woman is diametrically opposed to their vision of femininity, where a woman or girl is nothing more than property to be abused. From Malala Yousafzai to the Chibok girls, extremists attack girls who simply want to go to school because an educated woman is a liberated woman — a reality they can’t handle. 

Promoting a distorted and violent picture of masculinity, their recruitment strategies for disaffected young men play on desires for strength and glory. 

Deeyah Khan, the Norwegian filmmaker behind the film "Jihad: A British Story",describes the prime targets for ISIS propaganda:  “It’s the kind of men who feel emasculated — small, pathetic, weak,” she tells me. “It allows them a hyper-masculinity because masculinity and violence are so closely linked in our societies. They can put on this persona: ‘I’m a holy warrior. You don’t respect me but you’re afraid of me.’”

Read More: 11 Photos That Show the Best of Humanity After the Manchester Attacks

Still, it is difficult to create a coherent narrative out of any act that strikes so randomly and so cruelly. Ultimately, terrorists want to instil fear and despair through violence. 

In Manchester, they launched an attack that struck women and girls in the midst of a moment designed to celebrate freedom. The attack also took the lives of several men, whose deaths are equally significant. In their statement claiming responsibility for the attack, ISIS referred to the “shameless concert arena,” as though targeting a venue designed for pleasure makes any kind of sense. From schools, to gay clubs, to concert venues, to people at work, to people just walking down the street, fundamentalists target people simply trying to be free, because freedom is the enemy of extremism. 

In the aftermath of such attacks, it’s the stories of people deciding to stand against these threats that remind us of what it means to be human. Of Nadia Murad calling on the UN to investigate ISIS for crimes against humanity, of Nigerian schoolgirls kidnapped from their classrooms deciding to go back to school,  of the people of Manchester coming together in the streets and singing.

It’s people claiming their right to be free, in defiance of those who will stop at nothing to steal this right, even by taking their lives. 

 
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Yosola Olorunshola

Written by Yosola Olorunshola

 

Yosola Olorunshola is a Communications Officer for Global Citizen. She studied History and French at Oxford University before completing a Masters in Creative Writing. Now based in London, in her spare time she writes fiction and runs a podcast called Diaspora Philes.

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Sexual violence against women and girls is endemic. It does incredible physical, psychological and consequential harm, preventing women and girls from realizing their full potential. Laws and legal systems around the world need to be amended to prevent sexual violence, to ensure justice if it happens and to promote equality. We call on your government to comprehensively review and amend, in consultation with survivors and women’s rights organizations, all laws, policies and procedures relating to rape and sexual assault. Such policies and procedures must be survivor-centered, non-discriminatory and sufficiently resourced to ensure women and girls’ access to justice. Please redouble your efforts to put systems in place to prevent sexual violence and, at a minimum, amend laws that allow the perpetrator of sexual violence impunity: - Laws allowing the perpetrator to walk free on reaching some form of “settlement,” including by marrying the victim. - Laws framed in terms of morality rather than bodily integrity, thereby perpetuating a cycle of violence and discrimination. - Laws that explicitly permit rape in marriage, even of children. - Laws permitting judicial discretion to reduce charges or define evidence based on stereotyped assessment of the complainant’s behavior. - Laws that fail to recognize true consent is impossible in situations of dependency or extreme vulnerability. - Laws or practices inhibiting investigation or prosecution of sexual assault. - Laws requiring witness corroboration and other overly burdensome evidence. We also call on your government to comprehensively review all its laws and policies to ensure removal of all remaining sex discrimination. Legal equality gives women and girls a level playing field from which to make their own choices, build their capabilities and achieve their hopes and dreams. This positively affects the whole of society as recognized in the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) adopted by governments at the United Nations in 2015.
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AID AND DEVELOPMENT

It’s official: President Trump wants to cut the State and USAID budget by 32 percent

May 23 2017 | By: TOM HART

STOP THESE CUTS

Stop President Trump’s proposed cuts to foreign aid

 
  

The White House has finally made it official: President Trump wants to cut the budget for State and USAID by 32 percent next year.

It gets worse. If the President’s proposal were to pass:

  • Funding for food to be sent to people who are starving would be completely eliminated
  • Funding for global health programs would be cut by 25 percent
  • Funding for development assistance worldwide would be cut in nearly half

This budget doesn’t reflect American leadership or American values, and it flies in the face of our national security and economic interests. Coupled with these proposed cuts, we are alarmed by the rumored demotion of development as a strong and independent pillar of U.S. foreign policy — a position that development has enjoyed over multiple administrations. (Read ONE’s full response here.)

This proposal becoming law would really hurt people living in extreme poverty and weaken America’s leadership in the world.

Here’s the good news: in no small part because of the pressure we’ve been putting on Congress since word of these cuts started leaking out three months ago, a wide array of senators and representatives have voiced their opposition to this proposal.

The budget President Trump proposed is dangerous and disheartening, but we are already turning the tide against it. This is a winnable fight. We can stop President Trump’s dangerous budget proposal from becoming law… but only if we raise our voices to Congress now.

It’s quick and easy: Call 1-888-453-3211 or click here to be connected to your senator via phone. When a staffer picks up, tell them your name, where you’re from, and that you want the senator to reject President Trump’s proposed budget cuts to foreign aid. That’s it!

P.S. This budget covers funding for a lot of issues so the phone lines might be very busy today. If you don’t reach your senators’ offices on the first try, don’t give up! This issue is too important. Try again in about 10 minutes.

Stop President Trump’s proposed cuts to foreign aid

Dear Congress, Please oppose President Trump’s proposed cuts - nearly ⅓ - to life-saving programs in the International Affairs Budget.

STOP THESE CUTS

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May 23 2017

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In Nigeria, saving lives one pint at a time
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HEALTH

In Nigeria, saving lives one pint at a time

12 December 2016 11:56AM UTC | By: GUEST BLOGGER

JOIN

Join the fight against extreme poverty

 
  

By Stanley Azuakola

In 2009, Temie Giwa-Tubosun visited Nigeria, her homeland, for the first time since she was 10 years old. 13 years abroad had insulated her from some of the harsh realities in her home country, but back as a graduate school intern with the UK’s Department for International Development (DfID), she witnessed an incident which became a motivation for her life’s work.

A young woman had been in labour for three days and her family, unable to afford hospital bills, milled around her waiting for death to come. Giwa-Tubosun and her colleagues showed up at the doorsteps of the petrified family hoping they would participate in a household survey. It was fortuitous timing – they lifted the woman into their truck and moved her to the hospital. She survived, but her baby sadly died.

“I had never seen anything like that. The family had resigned itself to losing her,” says Giwa-Tubosun of the incident.

dsc_5320copy-1
Blood is a big deal

Giwa-Tubosun spent just three months in Nigeria during that visit but she became obsessed from that moment with stopping maternal mortality.

Nigeria contributes the second largest share to maternal and child death rates in the world – hemorrhages kills more pregnant women every year than any other complication apart from pre-eclampsia (high blood pressure). Malaria patients (especially children), sickle cell patients, cancer patients, victims of terror attacks, and many others end up needing blood at different times as well. A pattern was emerging in Giwa-Tubosun’s mind – blood is a big deal.

dsc_5325In 2012, Giwa-Tubosun returned to Nigeria and started the One Percent Project to “inspire a new generation of voluntary blood donors to solve the problem of blood shortages.”

The One Percent Project kept a database of willing prospective donors who could be reached at a moment’s notice to donate blood. Through its blood drives and advocacy, the project has received donations of 3500 pints of blood to date, enough to save over 10,000 lives. Her work earned her a 2014 nomination in the BBC’s 100 Women List.

But Giwa-Tubosun wasn’t satisfied. The NGO model wasn’t working for her. It could not solve the problem in a “significant way,” she said and she worried about sustainability when the project rested on the whims of donors.

“Every year the funders decide what they care about,” she says. “I spent 70 per cent of the time looking for money.” Her response was to quit her day job with the Lagos government and launch a technology powered social enterprise called LifeBank, “the biggest virtual based blood bank in Nigeria.”

At first glance, it seems like the only problem is one of supply not matching demand, but it is “actually an information and logistics problem.”

A blood bank in Ikeja, Lagos – for instance – may have the blood needed by a patient elsewhere in Lagos, but the patient and the hospital may be unaware. Stored blood has a shelf life and is discarded if it is not used within six weeks. This is waste which could be avoided if the hospital had access to the information.

The second challenge is transporting the blood from where it is available to where it is needed in safe and reliable condition.

LifeBank solves both of these problems. It uses technology to provide information to health providers about where to find the blood they need at any given time, and then helps deploy it in quick time and in good condition to save lives.

dsc_5363“We have an online database where health providers can search themselves for blood availability and pay for it. Or they could call us on our toll free numbers to help them find it,” she says.

Nigeria’s health systems largely remain basic and unreceptive to change – Nigerians spend up to $1 billion annually on medical tourism – so LifeBank is operating in almost virgin territory. Making a business case to investors for health technology in Nigeria, according to Giwa, is challenging – especially for women.

“Investors tend to bet on people who look like them,” she says. A 30-year old mum navigating in the male dominated tech sector of a notoriously sexist society like Nigeria looks nothing like the typical investor. “It is hard for them to trust the judgement, vision and ability of women to move the company they’re building forward,” Giwa-Tubosun says, “but I don’t let it stop me.” Her advice to women? “Don’t wait till you think everything is certain. Women have to just start.”

Join the fight against extreme poverty

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CITIZENSHIP

These 2 Homeless Men Became the Unlikely Heroes of the Manchester Tragedy

By Phineas Rueckert| May 24, 2017

homeless-men-manchester.jpg__1500x670_q85_crop_subsampling-2.jpgTwitter/ITV News, GoFundMe/Michael Johns

Monday night’s horrific bombing at an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester, England, was the latest in a series of devastating terrorist attacks that have brought out the best and worst in humanity. Amidst all the acts of kindness offered by Mancunians to victims of the attack, from free lifts to blood drives, two men’s bravery stood out above the rest. 

Stephen Jones, a homeless man who was sleeping near the concert venue, awoke to a loud bang, but instead of running away from the commotion he entered the scrum of fleeing concertgoers. 

Take Action: Help The Most Marginalized and Vulnerable Find Shelter

Jones described taking nails out of young girls’ arms, and their faces. He and his friends helped a woman who was bleeding profusely, holding her legs up so they wouldn’t bleed out as the EMT approached. 

In an interview with ITV News, Jones described why he felt compelled to help the victims. 

“I wouldn’t be able to live with myself for walking away and leaving kids like that,” he said. “They needed the help, I’d like to think someone would come and help me if I needed the help.” 

"Just because I am homeless doesn’t mean I haven’t got a heart," Jones told ITV.

He wasn’t the only homeless man in the area who risked his safety to help others affected by the tragedy. 

Read More: 8 Ways People Rushed to Help After Manchester Terror Attack

The Independent spoke with Chris Parker, who was also near the concert venue at the time of the attack. Parker was in front of the venue to ask concertgoers for spare change when the blast hit. 

“Everyone was piling out, all happy and everything else,” he told the Independent. “As people were coming out of the glass doors I heard a bang and within a split second I saw a white flash, then smoke and then I heard screaming.”

After rushing inside the building, Parker held a dying woman in his arms and helped a young girl whose legs were blown off by the blast by wrapping her in a merchandise t-shirt. 

“I haven’t stopped crying,” he said. 

Read More: Why This Man Is Traveling the US & Serving Sandwiches to the Homeless

Far from becoming unsung heroes, the two men’s bravery was hailed by Mancunians, who in turn rushed to their aid through the help of social media. 

Multiple crowdfunding campaigns have been started to help the two homeless men get back on their feet. As of this writing, a JustGiving campaign for Jones has raised over £20,000 ($25,000) and a GoFundMe campaign for Parker raised over £30,000 ($38,000), blowing away the initial goal of £1,000. 

The co-owner of the West Ham United soccer team, David Sullivan, and his son, Dave Sullivan Jr., took to Twitter to seek out Jones — offering him housing for six months. 

In times of such tragedy, it is the Stephen Joneses and Chris Parkers of the world who will be remembered more than the act of terrorism itself. They have shown, once again, the power of humanity in the face of hate and destruction. 

 
Phineas Rueckert

Written by Phineas Rueckert

 

Phineas Rueckert is a writer at Global Citizen. He graduated from Macalester College with a degree in Political Science and International Studies, and spent the past year teaching English in Toulouse, France. He is originally from Brooklyn, New York.

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CITIZENSHIP

10 Tips for a Delicious & Ethical Summer BBQ for Global Citizens

By Meghan Werft  and  James O'Hare| May 26, 2017

 

The long, golden days of summer are here at last.

Basking in the sun, picnicking with friends and family, exploring the bounties of nature: these are the joys of summer that are arriving north of the equator this month.

Read More: 2016 Will Be the Hottest Year On Record, Again.

It’s a season that some wish would stay all year (and with climate change, that may happen in some regions of the world). With winter snows melting and spring rains subsiding, now is the perfect time to get outside for a potluck, picnic, or a summer cookout and make as sustainable as possible.

Here’s Global Citizen’s guide to throwing most sustainable cookout this summer.


Fill Your Plate With Veggies

 

via GIPHY

Veganism can save the world, seriously. Our first recommendation is to make your summer cookout meals vegan — or at least veggie-heavy.

Switching from red meat to a plant-based diet even for one meal can save 1,800 gallons of water that would have been used to produce one pound of beef. Try this nifty vegan calculator for a glimpse at the impact changing to a vegan diet can have on the planet.

Recipes like this Sriracha veggie burger or these 10 best vegan burgers are delicious eco-friendly summery alternatives to traditional beef patties.

Or you can make a meal out of “side dishes” like grilled garlic-herb roasted corn on the cob, crunchy walnut coleslaw, vegan potato salad, and almond grilled peaches with maple coconut ice cream.

Splurge on Ethically Sourced Protein (If You Do Eat Meat)

 

via GIPHY

We get it: for many people, a BBQ isn’t a BBQ without burgers and hot dogs (at the very least). But if you are going to give in to carnivorous temptations, at least serve ethically-sourced meat and fish.

Can’t make it to the beach? Bring the ocean to you by grilling up some ethically sourced oysters. If you’re one of many bacon-obsessed Americans, products like Niman Ranch are more ethical, hormone-free, vegetarian fed, and “raised with care.” Check out some of their recipes here.

Ethically-raised meats are a huge step up from the poor conditions of factory-farmed animal agriculture that can affect both workers and meat quality.

Serve a Smaller Menu, Tailored to Your Guests

 

via GIPHY

It may seem counterintuitive to buy less food for a gathering, but hear us out. Instead of scrambling to find guests who can take leftovers home, serving less food means less food waste, which ends up in landfills, emits greenhouse gases and accelerates climate change.

You can do this by taking a survey of your guests’ dietary preferences and any allergy concerns to make sure the food you purchase matches up with what your guests will actually eat.

Bread, milk, potatoes, cheese, and apples are the most commonly tossed foods that end up in landfills. Most of these are thrown away out of households, but keeping this in mind before planning for a cookout is important, too. Try a recipe like this bread pudding with leftovers if you do have uneaten food.

The Guardian suggests using this guide instead of serving sizes recommended on packaging, which can be inflated to help sell more food, according to economics expert Brian Wansink, author of “Mindless Eating.”

Opt For an Eco-Friendly Beverage

Toast Ale food waste Tristram Stuart

No cookout would be complete without chilled summer beverages. Check out Toast Ale — a beer that uses excess bread in the brew process. It’s currently available online and in the UK, and is coming to stores in New York this summer.

Outdoor clothing company Patagonia also partnered with HopWorks Urban Brewery to bring Global Citizens this eco-friendly beer that helps fight climate change. The hops in the beer come from Kernza, a grain that’s engineered not to cause soil erosion.

And here are five additional tips on how to drink responsibly for the planet.

Avoid Bottled Water

 

via GIPHY

Don’t buy bottled water. Just don’t do it.

Producing bottled water takes loads of energy and is not safer than tap. In fact, most bottled water comes from taps according to Food & Water Watch.

Bottled water sales overtook soft drinks for the first time last year. From a health perspective, it’s good that people are opting for water over sugary soda, but individual bottles still use an alarming amount of plastic. It takes more water to produce a bottle of water than to simply drink that amount from a tap source.

Instead, you can encourage others to bring water bottles. Or make a fun refreshing drink, like this green apple mocktail, from some misshapen foods. You’ll be saving landfills from food waste and plastic with one swift recipe.

Cut Plastic Out of Cutlery

Edible cutlery-HERO.pngImage: TreeHugger

Remember how you’re not supposed to buy plastic water bottles? The same goes with utensils.

There are so many sustainable, ethical alternatives to plastic knives, forks, and spoons. Here are seven eco-cutlery alternatives to plastic, including chopsticks and water bottles — some of them are even edible.

France proved how unnecessary the material is when it banned plastic cutlery in 2016. India upped the ante earlier this year when it banned literally all plastic in Delhi.

Donate to Parks You Love to Secure Future Summer Cookout Locations

 

via GIPHY

To make sure you have places in the great outdoors, or clean beaches, to enjoy summer cookouts, why not donate to your favorite national and local parks departments?

With proposed budget cuts to environmental protection agencies, and scientific research on climate change, there has never been a better time to donate to National Parks and wildlife reserves.

Better yet, take action to support and preserve these ecological treasures.

Strike Up a Conversation on Global Issues You Care About

 

via GIPHY

This might be best followed before your uncles get into the case of Toast Ales. But take advantage of the luscious summer weather during a cookout to discuss global global health, education, the massive famine in East Africa, or the 783 million peoplewho need access to clean water.

Every problem that has ever been solved has started with an idea, so see what your friends and family members have going on in their noggins. It’s ok if you’re not an expert in socio-political issues — just make sure your local officials take action.

It’s amazing how the simplest of items can solve complex problems, like these blue drums helping women in Sub-Saharan Africa collect water, these breezy summer shoes made from recycled ocean plastics, or these refugee shelters made from water bottles.

Donate Leftovers & Compost Food Scraps

 

via GIPHY

If you do have leftovers from a summer cookout, look up the nearest food bank for any canned leftovers, like beans, or condiments such as mustard and ketchup. Tortillas and bread are also great for donating to food banks. And some will take fruits and veggies as well.

For food scraps: local composting locations, like community gardens, are a great place to take leftovers that have been partially eaten. Check out this guide to what you can and cannot compost.

Pro tip: composting can cut down on methane, a greenhouse gas that is 26 times more potent in the atmosphere than carbon dioxide, released as food rots. It’s another form of recycling and can enrich the soil in your own home garden.

And Finally, Do Your Part to Reduce Food Waste
 

When shopping for food, take note of your stock and then make a list after checking what you have in your pantry, refrigerator, and especially the depths of the freezer. One summer night you could even thaw out a whole dinner from frozen leftovers.

This tip is great for everyday shopping too, not just for parties. By shopping for individual meals instead of buying in bulk, we can cut down on the 40% of food produced for humans that gets thrown out.

While you’re in the supermarket, don’t be afraid to give those ugly fruits and veggies some love. They’re just as nutritious as the cosmetically “perfect” ones and you’ll save them from a doomed fate in the landfill. 

 
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Meghan Werft

Written by Meghan Werft

 

Meghan is an Editorial Coordinator at Global Citizen. She studied International Political Economy at the University of Puget Sound before moving to New York. She is a firm believer that education and awareness on interconnected global issues has the power to create a more sustainable, equal world where poverty does not exist.

 

Written by James O'Hare

 

James is an Editorial Intern at Global Citizen. He believes education is the starting point in working for social justice and hopes to someday eliminate the spectacle in American politics. He habitually quotes Mitch Hedberg and believes there should be a national holiday in honor of whoever invented chicken-bacon-ranch pizza.

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406
GIRLS AND WOMEN

Here are the 12 African game changers you need to know

20 April 2017 4:50PM UTC | By: ROBYN DETORO

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Who is changing the game in Africa? That’s the question NewAfricanWoman magazine put to the public as they prepared to host the New African Woman Awards 2017 – an annual ceremony that honors and celebrates Africa’s most influential and impactful women. After weeks of nominations a special panel of judges took on the tough task of narrowing the candidates down to just twelve winners. Here are this year’s winners:

New African Woman of the Year: Fatoumata Jallow-Tambajan, Gambia
Vice-President of the Gambia, Minister of Women Affairs and a fierce human rights activist she’s rightfully claimed this award for her key contributions to the ouster of Gambia’s former long-term leader, Yahya Jammeh.

New African Woman in Civil Society: Chief Theresa Kachindamoto, Malawi
With over 300 child marriage annulments under her belt, you can bet Chief Kachindamoto is a force to be reckoned with. A strong advocate against the practice, she played a major role in influencing the Malawian government to outlaw child marriage altogether earlier this year.

AF-Women-Award-Individual-Graphic1.jpgNew African Women in Health, Science and Technology: Dr. Helena Ndume, Namibia
We can’t think of a doctor more deserving of a win. Dr. Helena Ndume is a game changing ophthalmologist and cataract surgeon who’s provided vision restoring surgery to over 35,000 Namibians for free.

New African Woman on the Rise (The Next Generation): Vivian Onano, Kenya
This avid youth activist (and ONE Member!) has called for improved girls rights and strongly encourages men to get involved in the fight for equal rights. As a UN Women Youth Advisor, it’s clear that she’s on the path to achieve her goals.

New African Woman in Politics and Public Office: Amina J. Mohammed, Nigeria
Years of experience have earned Amina a key position with the United Nations as its Deputy Secretary-General. The former Nigerian Minister of Environment played a big role in assessing how the Sustainable Development Goals and Millennium Development Goals would impact African women across the continent.

AF-Women-Award-Individual-Graphic2.jpgNew African Woman in Arts and Culture: Joan Okorodudu, Nigeria
Joan Okorodudu is the brains and force behind one of Africa’s fastest growing modeling agencies and is credited with raising the profile of Nigerian fashion to a global level.

New African Woman Award in Education: Tsitsi Masiyiwa, Zimbabwe
We know educating young girls and boys is one of the best ways to equip them for success in life. As the founder of the Higherlife Foundation, a non-profit organisation that provides vulnerable and orphaned children with scholarships which has already benefitted over 250,000 children, it’s clear Tsitsi Masiyiwa knows this too!

AF-Women-Award-Individual-Graphic4.jpgNew African Woman in Finance: Binta Touré Ndoye, Mali
Competition for this award was high, but Binta’s game changing work with Oragroup – a Malian banking enterprise – earned her the top spot.

New African Woman in Media: Amira Yahyaoui, Tunisia
This blogger and political activist is a brazen advocate for human rights, transparency and public accountability. Amira’s goal is to empower citizens to participate in civil society and to encourage governments to establish good governance and political ethics.

New African Woman in Agriculture: Tumusiime Rhoda Peace, Uganda
The former African Union Commissioner of Agriculture and Rural Development played a key role in promoting the importance of food security across the continent. Throughout her career she has championed women’s empowerment and poverty eradication.AF-Women-Award-Individual-Graphic3.jpgNew African woman Award in Business: Salwa Idrissi Akhannouch, Morocco
She’s one of Africa’s most successful businesswomen. Heading up the Akwa Group franchise group Askal landed her 68th place on Forbes Middle East’s 100 Most Powerful Arab Businesswomen.

New African Woman in Sport: Fatma Samoura, Senegal
Fatma’s not only the first female Secretary General of Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA), she is also the first non-European to hold the role!

Congratulations to all of the well-deserving winners and nominees!

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ROBYN DETORO
20 April 2017 4:50PM UTC

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