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6 stunning African Instagram accounts you need to be following

6 stunning African Instagram accounts you need to be following

August 17 2018 | By: SADOF ALEXANDER


Join the fight against extreme poverty


Photography has a new face in the modern world. With over 1 billion monthly users, Instagram continues to change the way people take and share photos. It’s no surprise that novice and professional photographers alike flock to this social media platform.

Social media makes our world seem smaller and smaller. On Instagram, users can see images from anywhere. It also empowers people to capture their everyday lives on film, allowing them to challenge stereotypes, tell real stories, and change the way we see the world around us.

How can social media change the way the world sees Africa? Here’s 6 Instagram accounts answering that question:

1. Everyday Africa


You can find profiles from The Everyday Projects all over Instagram. Each of their accounts exists to challenge stereotypes and show multiple perspectives on different cultures. Their Everyday Africa profile empowers photographers across the continent to share their work – and the stories that come along.

Everyday Africa’s popularity has stretched its influence past the social media platform. Multiple magazines have featured their work and stories, and a full-length book has also been published by their founders and photographers.

2. Visiter L’Afrique


There are tons of travel Instagrams floating around. Visiter L’Afrique sets itself apart by showing Africa through the eyes of the people who live throughout the continent. The account’s ambassadors show the stunning landscapes, breathtaking cities, and tranquil seasides that are ignored all too often.

“I wanted to show Africa as it really is, far from stereotypes,” says Diane Audrey Ngako, founder of Visiter L’Afrique. “It is not to deny its problems, but rather to highlight its strengths and opportunities.”

3. lafrohemian


Sarah Waiswa, a Ugandan-born Kenyan photographer, left the corporate world to pursue her passion — and she hasn’t looked back. Her captivating photos of everyday life explore what she calls the “New African Identity.”

Waiswa’s work explores social issues throughout the continent in unique and innovative ways. From the persecution of albino people to ballet dancers in Kibera and so much more, her images show dynamic issues that often go unseen.

4. africashowboy


Even if you don’t know his name, you’ve probably seen his work. Nana Kofi Acquahworks for Getty Images, The Global Fund, Facebook, Hershey’s, and BBC, to name a few. His talents in journalism and advertising come together with the hope of sparking new conversations about Africa.

The topics of his work range greatly, with each one speaking to important issues. His medical portfolios cover diseases like leprosy, ebola, and fistula (you can see some of his photos on fistula in this blog). He’s also dedicated portfolios to showing gender inequality and promoting women’s empowerment.

5. A_taste_of_zimbabwe


Ivy Mango knows how to create a feast for the eyes. Growing up in the Mudzi District, she discovered her passion for cooking while exploring her garden and eating family meals cooked by her grandmother. Her childhood grew into a culinary career.

Her account features a spread of every Zimbabwean dish imaginable. These irresistibly colorful plates, and the recipes that go along with them, would satisfy any appetite!

6. sam.vox


Tanzanian photographer Sam Vox travels the nation documenting important issues. He’s worked with organizations like Water Aid, Everyday Education, and even did some incredible projects for ONE! In both his commissioned and personal work, he uses photography to tell captivating stories.

“My Instagram is a channel where I am able to share a small fraction of Tanzania’s heart and her people,” says Vox. “Ultimately my aim is to show the ordinary everyday life in an African country, by sharing stories of people, places and their different cultures and traditions.”

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Local African dolls outselling Barbie in Nigeria

Diversity exists in all walks of life, even toys.

I don't personally have a big history of playing with dolls, and as a large, bearded male who enjoys violent sports, I might not even be the sort of customer that doll manufacturers have in mind when creating their products. I'm not really offended by that.

But a story that didn't sit as well with me comes from Nigeria, where, one day, Taofick Okoya's daughter told him that she wished she was white. The comment didn't sit well with Okoya either, and instead of lamenting the lack of dolls who could make his daughter feel content in her own skin, he got to work.

"All the dolls in the house were all white, and I was like, 'Oh, OK, that's a problem,' " Okoya said. "Because when you load a child with all this, it becomes an acceptable form of ... how you should look. And so I thought, I want to use my dolls to teach Nigerian culture, African culture."


Suppliers and retailers in Nigeria were initially skeptical about African dolls dressed in local fashion styles. "They said, ‘black dolls don’t sell,’” he told Elle South Africa. “I then embarked on an educational campaign via various media, telling people about the psychological impact dolls have on children, and (the effect) dolls in the likeness of the African child can have on them. It took almost three years.”

And Okoya's persistence paid off. The Queens of Africa range of dolls is now stocked around the country, with orders from North America, Europe, and Brazil starting to roll in. Almost 10,000 dolls are being sold per month, each of which is assembled and dressed by hand in Lagos. That rate of sales is outpacing Barbie in Nigeria.

The three dolls in the African Queens range are styled after three of Nigeria's main tribal groups, and represent peace, love, and endurance. In a music video created for the dolls, one of the dolls was even holding a #BringBackOurGirls sign! 


The range of products is expanding, and will eventually include music, books, movies, and accessories. And it's a good thing. Teaching young girls to accept themselves and their own beauty is important around the world, and the social values built into the Queens of Africa range will help to create strong, healthy communities.

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This South African pilot started a camp to inspire young girls

6 December 2018 4:57PM UTC | By: SADOF ALEXANDER


Poverty is Sexist: Join the movement


The “Zulu Sierra – Papa Whiskey Whiskey” (ZS-PWW) may look like any other plane but this aircraft is special. It’s carrying bright young minds to an exceptional future. The plane is owned by Refilwe Ledwaba — the first black woman to fly for the South Africa Police Service and the first black woman to be a helicopter pilot in South Africa!

Refilwe grew up in Lenyenye, a small township in the Limpopo region of South Africa. Originally, she wanted to become a doctor, but everything changed on a flight from Johannesburg to Cape Town. That fateful flight had a female pilot who inspired her to take to the skies.

To achieve her goal, she wrote to over 200 South African companies asking them to help fund her education. The South Africa Police Service responded, offering to pay for her training and help her get a commercial pilot license.

Since then, she’s founded the Girls Fly Programme in Africa Foundation (GFPA) — a non-profit that has set-up a training programme and an annual flying camp for teenage girls —  giving a head start to the next generation of women aviation and space leaders in Africa. The camp (run with Women and Aviation) teaches girls from South Africa, Botswana and Cameroon all about aviation.

Camp attendees spend their days learning about computer coding, building robots and completing flight simulations. They also get an opportunity to take a flying lesson on board the ZS-PWW, where they learn the basics of flying.

The girls come from different backgrounds, from townships to private schools, but all achieve high scores in math and science at their schools. GFPA gives them the opportunity to meet professionals working in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM), and learn about the exciting and hugely varied career opportunities for them in these fields.

“I think STEM is very important because, on a personal note, it opened a lot of doors for me,” says Refilwe. “So if you’re not going to prepare women for those jobs in the future, then we’re lost.”

Refilwe made history in South Africa. Now, she’s paving the way for a new generation of girls to do the same.

Every girl deserves the opportunity to reach the skies. If you want to support girls worldwide, join the Poverty is Sexistmovement!

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14 facts about the AIDS epidemic you need to know

28 November 2018 3:39PM UTC | By: ONE


Sign the pledge: We’ll do whatever it takes to end AIDS


Thirty years ago, HIV/AIDS swept the globe largely unchecked, and a diagnosis was seen as a death sentence. Two decades later, we’ve made amazing progress – AIDS-related deaths are down by half – but the good news makes the bad news worse.

This good news may be hiding a big problem. The incredible progress the world has made against AIDS has created a sense of complacency that is threatening our ability to end AIDS within our lifetime.

You might not know it from watching the news or listening to lawmakers, but AIDS is still a crisis. Nearly 37 million people are living with HIV today, and more than 15 million of them still can’t get life-saving treatment. This is something we can change, but it will take leadership.

These stats show the true scale of the AIDS epidemic, and why world leaders must take action to make this a disease of the past.


  • Around 37 million people are living with HIV/AIDS. That’s nearly the entire population of Canada.
  • Around 35 million people have died from HIV/AIDS since the start of the epidemic. That’s the same as the entire population of Morocco.
  • Nearly 1 million people died from AIDS-related illnesses in 2017. That’s more than 2,500 people dying from AIDS-related causes every day.
  • AIDS is the number one disease killer of young women globally.
  • Nearly 1,000 young women are infected with HIV every day. That’s 40 women every hour.
  • Only about half of children living with HIV/AIDS are receiving treatment. Last year, 180,000 children were infected with HIV during birth or breastfeeding — the first time that new pediatric infections have not fallen since they peaked in 2002.

Sub-Saharan Africa

  • Sub-Saharan Africa accounted for nearly 65% of new infections globally. 1.2 million people were infected with HIV in the region in 2017.
  • Sub-Saharan Africa accounted for over 70% of deaths globally. Over 650,000 people died in the region in 2017.
  • 282,000 young women (age 15-24) were infected with HIV in 2017 – that’s over 750 a day.
  • Young women in sub-Saharan Africa are twice as likely to be infected with HIV than young men.

The good news

  • Globally, more than 21 million people were receiving lifesaving treatment at the end of 2017, up from 11 million in 2012. That’s a 91% increase.
  • In sub-Saharan Africa, 14.6 million people were receiving lifesaving treatment at the end of 2017, up from 7.7 million in 2012. That’s a 90% increase.
  • Globally, 1.8 million people became infected with HIV in 2017 – down from 2 million in 2013. That’s a 10% decrease.
  • In the last 15 years, the cost of antiretroviral treatment for one person has dropped from US$10,000 a year to US$75 a year — an all-time low.

France will host a Global Fund Replenishment Conference in October 2019 – meetings that aim to raise new funds and mobilize partners. It will provide a great opportunity for governments, businesses, and health organizations to recommit to the fight to end AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria. It must be a turning point, anything less will be an indictment of our global leadership.

We know what to do, we know how to do it, and we know if we don’t move faster than the virus, then it will win. AIDS isn’t done. And neither are we.

To win the fight against AIDS, we need you. This World AIDS Day, ONE members are turning our outrage into action and putting our leaders on notice – add your voice today!

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Learn more about the awesome female characters in ‘Black Panther’

Learn more about the awesome female characters in ‘Black Panther’

February 14 2018 | By: SADOF ALEXANDER


Join the fight against extreme poverty


In a world where women are not always given the same opportunities as men, a film that shows powerful women breaking down gender barriers deserves celebration.

Audiences are gearing up to see the highly-anticipated Marvel film Black Panther, and for all the right reasons. In addition to having a predominantly African-American cast, the film features an ensemble of vital female characters. Fierce warriors, a powerful queen, and a young genius don’t just work beside the hero — they are heroes themselves.

The film’s stars are just as excited for the film. Here’s what some of them are saying about the powerful female characters they bring to life:

1. Danai Gurira

Danai Gurira — a ONE member and supporter of the #PovertyIsSexist campaign — understands the power of representation in empowering young girls.

In Black Panther, Gurira plays Okoye, head of an all-female special forces group, the Dora Milaje. She works closely with the king, T’Challa, to ensure his safety and protect the nation’s citizens. Seeing a woman in such a prominent position will be valuable for young viewers, according to Gurira.

“The idea that little girls can look at those who are closest to their leader and see they are women. And see these women walk the streets and be in charge…It’s something so important to preserve;” she said in an interview with Elle. “That little girl needs to be able to grow up and become an Okoye, or a Shuri, or a Nakia.”

2. Lupita Nyong’o

Lupita Nyong’o plays Naika, a member of a special team that travels to the outside world to gather information for Black Panther‘s fictional kingdom of Wakanda.

Nyong’o told toofab that Black Panther breaks down female stereotypes by showing women “going about our business, supporting each other, having other points of view but still not being against each other.”

“The fact that there’s so many of us, we really get a sense of the fabric of Wakanda as a nation. We see women alongside men and we see how much more effective a society can be if they allow women to explore their full potential.”

3. Angela Bassett

It takes immense power to be Queen Mother of Wakanda, which is why Angela Bassett fits the role perfectly as Ramonda. She plays a proud mother on screen, and shows her pride in her fellow cast members off-screen.

“It’s a lot of strength and balance and beauty and I’m just thrilled by getting to work with Danai and Lupita and actresses and brand new faces across the diaspora; it was beautifully cast,” Bassett told toofab. “It’s going to be quite a sight and I think it’s going to be magnetic.”

4. Letitia Wright

Shuri, Princess of Wakanda and inventor extraordinaire, is one of the most intelligent people in the world. As the leader of the Wakandan Design Group, she creates the incredible technology used by her brother, T’Challa.

In real life, Africa has been seeing a rise of girls in tech. For example, in Kenya, the introduction of NairoBits has empowered more girls to learn computer skills. The country will also be represented at this year’s Technovation competition, thanks to five incredible girls who invented an app to end FGM. Letitia Wright, who plays Shuri in the movie, hopes Black Panther will inspire even more young women to pursue tech.

“She’s (Shuri) so vibrant; a beautiful spirit, but also so focused on what she does,” Wright said in an interview with comicbook.com. “And that’s good for other people to see, especially young people to see, because it’s like, ‘Look, there’s a young black girl who loves technology and she’s from Africa.’ It’s something refreshing.”

International Women’s Day is just around the corner, and it looks like audiences will have some new role models to celebrate. Which of these characters inspires you the most? Leave a comment below!

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La imagen puede contener: interior


It’s not too late! Bid on incredible works of contemporary art and design with proceeds going to (RED)’s fight to #endAIDS. The Gates Foundationwill match proceeds from the auction.Sothebys.com/Redonline Sotheby's GagosianTheaster Gates Adjaye Associates Miami Design District Design Miami/

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Supported living services

Find out about our supported living services

People take choosing where to live and who to live with for granted – we don’t, we understand that having these choices makes you feel in control of your life.

We support people with a learning disability to live how and where they choose in our supported living services.

A place of your own

We work together with our sister charity, Golden Lane Housing, as well as social and private landlords to find a home that meets your needs. Some of our supported living services are purpose-built or have been adapted and use technology that helps people to live as independently as possible.

For many people who want to live independently, getting the right care and support is just as important as finding the right home.

We have been supporting people for years, so we know what quality support looks like.

We can provide personal support to help you with things like getting dressed. We can also help you around the home, such as cooking a meal. And if you would like support to go out in the community or to do your favourite thing, we can help you to with that too.

Support is available from a couple of hours a week to 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Quality and experience

Our services meet or exceed the standards set by the Care Quality Commission and the Social Services Inspectorate Wales.

We also have our own quality standards, What Matters Most, which help us support people in the best possible way. These standards have been developed to cover the things that people have told us are important to them.

We have supported many people to move from residential care or family homes into their own place or a house shared with friends.


Read our latest housing report


Take a look at our latest report based on research around Specialised Supported Housing (SSH) for people with a learning disability.

We've created this report to better understand the scale, nature and cost of SSH, draw on examples of good practice and to provide evidence to inform the debate around funding for supported housing in the future.

The report presents findings from research carried out by Housing LIN (Learning and Inclusion Network) into the scope and scale of the SSH sector.


Download resourceFunding supported housing for all

Residential care vs supported living


"My brother presently lives in a residential care home for adults. Can anybody tell me the difference between the two as I have spoken with others and it doesn't seem to me to be that clear cut."

Got questions? Ask them in FamilyHub, our online community for parents and families.


Read more on FamilyHub

Watch our supported living video

See what our supported living service looks likes, and get in touch to see how we might be able to support you in your area

How to get the support you need

Contact the Learning Disability Helpline for advice and information about what support we can offer you.

Or why not take a look at FamilyHub? This is our online community for parents and family carers of people with a learning disability, and is a place for sharing experiences, advice and support.


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Over one billion people lifted from extreme poverty since 1990

October 31 2018 | By: KEREZHI SEBANY


Join the fight against extreme poverty


We’re closer than ever before to ending extreme poverty. In 1990, 36% of the world’s population was living on less than US$1.90 a day. By 2015, this figure had shrunk to just 10%. That’s over a billion people no longer living in extreme poverty!

Despite remarkable progress, the fight is far from over. The World Bank’s latest official poverty estimates show that poverty reduction has slowed down to less than half the rate it was. In 2015, 736 million people worldwide were still living on less than US$1.90 a day. If poverty reduction doesn’t happen faster, we may not end extreme poverty by 2030.

In 2015, more than half of those living in extreme poverty were in sub-Saharan Africa. That’s 413 million people, up from an estimated 278 million in 1990. Without urgent action, nearly 9 in 10 people living in extreme poverty are predicted to reside in sub-Saharan Africa by 2030.

Poverty is also on the rise in fragile and conflict-affected countries.. The proportion of people living in extreme poverty in these countries has been increasing since 2010. In 2015, nearly a quarter of all people living in extreme poverty were in these countries. Most of these countries are in Africa and face some of the most severe structural barriers to development.

How can we step up efforts to end extreme poverty? That was one of the main questions at the World Bank’s launch event to mark the release of the new poverty estimates. Jamie Drummond, ONE’s Co-Founder and Executive Director of Global Strategy, was straightforward: we need to increase investments in people, particularly young women.

We’ve come a long way, and we know how far we need to go to win this battle. In order to win, governments need to invest in people to grow economies. This won’t be easy, but it is possible. More importantly, it is necessary to create a world where everyone can thrive.

You can join the fight against extreme poverty by becoming a ONE member today!

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10 female inventors you should definitely know about

6 November 2017 12:01AM UTC | By: CLEA GUY-ALLEN


Join the fight against extreme poverty


You’ve all heard of famous inventors such Galileo (telescope) or Karl Benz (automobile), Alexander Graham Bell (telephone) and Benjamin Franklin (bifocal glasses), but do you know who Grace Hopper and  Stephanie Kwolek are?

One of these women invented the first compiler for computer programming, without which it’s fair to say the world would be a very different place, and the other invented Kevlar, a material five times stronger than steel, currently used around the world to protect people from bullets! Now, these are very important inventions, but as history shows us, women’s achievements can often be overlooked when it comes to handing out the correct amount of praise.

We’ve decided to correct that and take a look at some of the most important discoveries and inventions made by women in the last 100 years:

1. Dr. Shirley Jackson – Research that led to the invention of all things telecommunication


Dr. Shirley Ann Jackson


The theoretical physicist was the first black woman to receive a Ph.D. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1973. While working at Bell Laboratories, she conducted breakthrough scientific research with subatomic particles that enabled others to invent the portable fax, touch tone telephone, solar cells, fibre optic cables, and the technology behind caller ID and call waiting. Imagine all the important information you would have missed without this amazing woman!

2. Marie Curie – Theory of Radioactivity



Marie Curie

By the time Marie Curie, a Polish and naturalized-French physicist, was just 44 she had laid out a theory of radioactivity (a term that she coined, techniques for isolating radioactive isotopes, and the discovery of two elements, polonium and radium (1898) and won TWO Nobel Prizes for her contribution to science! She was the first person in history to win Two Nobel Prize’s and the only person to win twice in multiple sciences!

3. Nancy Johnson – The Ice Cream Maker


In 1843, Nancy from Philadelphia became one of the most important women, nay, people, in history by patenting a design for a hand-operated ice cream maker, which is still used to the current day! We don’t know what more to say other than thank you, Nancy Johnson. Thank you.

4. Maria Telkes – The FIRST 100% solar powered house


The Hungarian scientist is famous for creating the first thermoelectric power generator in 1947, designing the first solar heating system for the Dover Sun House in Dover, Massachusetts, and the first thermoelectric refrigerator in 1953 using the principles of semiconductor thermoelectricity. Girl power indeed!

5. Ann Tsukamoto – Stem cell isolation


Ann Tsukamoto

In 1991 this was a huge and complex US invention – the ability to isolate the stem cell has been vital in medical advancements in learning more about cancer. Hopes are that one day it could lead to a cure to that and many other diseases.

6. Grace Hopper – Computer Programming


US born Grace Hopper and Howard Aiken designed Harvard’s Mark I computer, a five-tonne, room-sized machine in 1944. Hopper invented the compiler that translated written language into computer code and coined the terms “bug” and “debugging” when she had to remove moths from the device (who knew?!) Now, just close your eyes for a minute, and try to think what the world would be like without the invention of programming. Almost pre-historic isn’t it?

7. Elizabeth Magie – Monopoly


Speaking of a time before the computer, no childhood memories would be complete without the recollection of getting into a tizz about your brother stealing from the bank, or not passing GO…

Originally patented in 1904 by Magie and called ‘The Landlord’s Game’ the game was a critique of the injustices of unchecked capitalism but was not so ironically stolen by a fella named Charles Darrow who sold it to the Parker Brothers in 1935. The company did eventually track down Elizabeth Magie, but only offered her $500 for her invention!

8. Rosalind Franklin – DNA double helix


Rosalind Franklin

Although the discovery of the DNA double helix is often attributed to Watson and Crick, who won the Nobel Prize in Physiology in 1962, it was not actually theirs to claim. They had a theory on the structure of DNA, however, it was Rosalind Franklin whose work confirmed their theory.

Rosalind Franklin, a British biophysicist, was the first person to capture a photographic image in 1952 using a technique she had honed: observing molecules using X-ray diffraction (nope, we’ve got no idea what this is either, don’t worry).

Why was she never credited for this?! Well, it is alleged that, without her permission, an estranged male colleague of hers called Wilkins, showed her photograph to competitors Watson and Crick, and the rest, as they say, is his-story.

9. Maria Beasley – The life raft


In 1882, Maria Beasely of the US decided that people should stop dying at sea. Which is great. People had been navigating the seas for millennia, but until then hadn’t come up with an effective product to help in the event of a SOS situation. Now, thanks to Maria, thousands of lives have been saved!

10. Stephanie Kwolek – Kevlar


Although this invention from American chemist Stephanie Kwolek in 1965 was an accident, it makes it no less loved! This material, which is five times stronger than steel, is used in bicycle tyres, racing sails, body armour, frying pans, musical instruments and building construction,  thanks to its tensile strength-to-weight ratio (again, no idea). What isn’t it in?

Women can achieve amazing things when allowed to reach their potential! Help us make sure every girl gets the chance to change the world by signing our #GirlsCountpetition today!

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Meet the Sudanese artists fighting for peace in a surprising way



Join the fight against extreme poverty


This story was originally reported by Inna Lazareva, Shanshan Chen and edited by Megan Rowling, Katy Migiro and Belinda Goldsmith for the Thomson Reuters Foundation

A group of artists and musicians in South Sudan is on a mission – to mobilise young people across the country through music, graffiti and poetry to help bring peace to the war-torn nation.

In 2011, the streets of the capital Juba were full of revellers, celebrating the world’s newest nation.

But hope for the future has soured after more than four years of civil war, with about a third of the country’s 12 million people forced from their homes by conflict.

Arts movement AnaTaban, or “I am tired” in Arabic, is trying to address anger over failed promises and suppression of independent voices by advocating for peace and unity among young people through media they like – rap music, slam poetry, and YouTube videos.


image via AnaTaban.

“As South Sudanese we are branded to be violent people but we are being unconventional in a very intentional way,” said poet Ayak Chol Deng Alak, 32, who helped set up AnaTaban in Juba in 2016. The group is now aiming to spread nationwide.

“We have seen conventional activism failing. If it is for our country, we might as well get the information out. It doesn’t really matter how, as long as we are not hurting anyone in the process,” she told the Thomson Reuters Foundation.


image via AnaTaban.

Born in an Ethiopian refugee camp where treatment from an aid agency saved her life, Alak is now a doctor and published poet in South Sudan, but her campaigning has come with risks.

Alak and other AnaTaban members say they have been interrogated, their cars confiscated, and some live apart from their families who have moved abroad for safety.

While being interviewed by two Thomson Reuters Foundation journalists at her apartment in Juba, Alak was taken outside for questioning by a man who wanted to know who her guests were.


image via AnaTaban.

South Sudan’s government did not respond to requests for comment on its treatment of AnaTaban members. Previously the government has denied blocking anyone’s freedom of speech.


South Sudan plunged into conflict in 2013 after clashes between troops loyal to President Salva Kiir and his former deputy Riek Machar deteriorated into a military confrontation. Tens of thousands have died in fighting between the two sides.


image via AnaTaban.

The U.N. Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) has reported that more than 100 activists and journalists have been killed, arrested, detained, fired or censored since mid-2016, with newspapers closed, often by the government.

UNMISS was only able to verify violations in government-controlled areas because insecurity and movement restrictions hindered work in opposition-held territory.

Talks in Ethiopia last month to revive a failed 2015 peace pact and end the war broke up without a deal.


image via AnaTaban.

Manasseh Mathiang, a musician and another founding member of AnaTaban, said it was crucial to engage young people in the drive to forge a better country for the future.

Almost 90 percent of South Sudanese are under the age of 45, according to a 2008 census. But illiteracy tops 70 percent, U.N. figures show, and unemployment is rife.

“The youth of South Sudan for so long have not had the opportunity or the platform to speak and to express themselves,” Mathiang told the Thomson Reuters Foundation in the group’s headquarters in Juba.


image via AnaTaban.

“We’ve got to let the youth know they have the power – they have power to speak and they have power to change the narrative … We’d like to see AnaTaban in all the states in South Sudan,” he said.

Peter Biar, chairman of the South Sudan Young Leaders Forum, based in Juba, said AnaTaban was one of a growing number of youth groups – both in rebel and government-controlled territory – striving for a better tomorrow.

“The only change that is possible in this country is a non-violent change – and this is what we are going to attempt,” said Biar, who works to bring together academics, church and youth leaders to advocate for peace and development.


Biar said AnaTaban has given hope to disillusioned young people in the capital through art and music.


image via AnaTaban.

AnaTaban’s first music video, posted on YouTube in August 2016, featuring artists, slam poets and activists, is dedicated “to all those we have lost in this senseless war and to all those who are still here and are tired enough to make the changes we need”.

The group’s social media campaigns are quickly shared, and it has branches in neighbouring Kenya, Uganda and Ethiopia.

Striking AnaTaban murals adorn the grey walls of streets and buildings in central Juba, quoting Nelson Mandela, Fidel Castro and the late John Garang, revered as the father of the nation.


image via AnaTaban.

In Kenya’s capital Nairobi, another AnaTaban founder, Jon Pen de Ngong, meets regularly with South Sudanese activists to collaborate on political writings and poems.

The former child soldier said he fled to Kenya after colleagues were abducted, poisoned and killed. He received a death threat – a dog’s jawbone with a bullet lodged inside.

“We thought we had a country … This not what we fought for,” he told the Thomson Reuters Foundation.


image via AnaTaban.

The exiles hope a peace agreement will be reached so that they can “go back and claim our rights as South Sudanese”, said Jackline Sadrack of AnaTaban’s Uganda chapter.

Despite the failure to reach a peace deal so far, South Sudan’s youth remain hopeful.

“I have this opportunity through my music to play a role in speaking on behalf of my people and what we desire as a people. Most of my songs are about how I would want peace in my country,” said Mathiang.

ONE welcomes the contributions of guest bloggers but does not necessarily endorse the views, programs, or organisations highlighted.

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La imagen puede contener: 5 personas, personas sonriendo, personas de pie


The third #REDAuction totaled nearly $11MM, including matching funds by Gates Foundation. Thank you to our curators Adjaye Associates & Theaster Gates and partners Bank of AmericaNetJets Sotheby's International Realty AffiliatesGander and White Shipping for making it possible.#endAIDS

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Secondary school students in Firhouse Community College and Killinarden Community School gathered last night for a work-in-progress performance as part of a vocal collaboration between the two schools. Composer Joe Csibi is working with the young people on this Music Generation South Dublin CreativeIrl commission, which will culminate with a full performance of the original work next May, 2019. Great anticipation already!


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What makes Christmas perfect for you? 🎄 
Good presents? 🎁 
Family being together? 👫 👬 👭 
Delicious food? 🍗 
Isobel shared with us what little things make Christmas perfect for her. 
Do these help your family? Or do you have your own traditions / tips? 😌


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25 facts that show the harsh reality girls face right now

9 October 2018 4:43PM UTC | By: MELANIE RHODES


An open letter to leaders


What does your future hold? University, your own business, fame and fortune? Whatever your hopes, you will not have imagined a future in which you got married off as a child, were denied an education, or infected with HIV by a husband that’s twice your age. But this is the reality for millions of girls living in extreme poverty. And it’s time to call it out for what it is: Sexist.

Nowhere on earth do girls and women have the same opportunities as men. But for girls living in extreme poverty, sexism can be a death sentence. This is unacceptable.

If we don’t fight for every girl to have the future she deserves, we’re limiting all of humanity’s potential. We need to demand that those with power and resources put women and girls at the heart of their investments.

Here are 25 shocking facts showing why #PovertyisSexist  →

Child Marriage

  • Globally, girls are being married off at a rate of 33,000 a day.
  • Girls from poor families are more than three times more likely to marry before 18 as girls from wealthier families.
  • An estimated 650 million women alive today were married as children. That’s double the population of the United States.


  • 130+ million girls are out of school.
  • Half a billion women can’t read.
  • Equatorial Guinea, Sierra Leone, Tanzania, and Burundi expel pregnant girls from school and deny adolescent mothers the right to study in public schools.
  • Attacks on schools increased 17-fold between 2000 and 2014, and girls’ schools were targeted three times more often than boys’ schools.

Female Adolescent HIV and HIV death rates

  • Globally, 340,000 girls and young women are infected with HIV every year.
  • Girls make up three out of four new infections among children aged 10-19 in sub-Saharan Africa.
  • A young woman in sub-Saharan Africa is twice as likely to be infected with HIV than a young man her age.
  • Globally, only 3 in every 10 adolescent girls and young women aged 15-24 years have comprehensive and accurate knowledge about HIV. The lack of information on HIV prevention and the power to use this information in sexual relationships, including in the context of marriage, undermines women’s ability to negotiate condom use and engage in safer sex practices.
  • In 2017 29,000 girls aged 15-24 died due to AIDS-related illnesses.

Violence Against Women

  • Almost one third (30%) of all women who have been in a relationship have experienced physical and/or sexual violence by their intimate partner.   
  • Globally, 44% of girls aged 15-19 think a husband is entitled to beat his wife.

Domestic labour inequities


  • Globally, girls aged 5–14 spend 550 million hours every day on household chores, 160 million more hours than boys their age spend.
  • 104 countries around the world have laws stopping women from doing certain jobs.
  • In sub-Saharan Africa, women and girls spend roughly 40 billion hours a year collecting water—the equivalent of a year’s worth of labour by the entire workforce in France.

Access to Finance/Financial Inclusion

  • Over one billion women do not have access to a bank account.

Maternal Mortality/dying in childbirth

  • 99% of all maternal deaths occur in developing countries.

Sexual exploitation of women and girls

  • Women and girls make up 96% of those trafficked for sexual exploitation.


  • Anaemia, a condition strongly connected to iron deficiency and poor nutrition, afflicts twice as many women as men – nearly one in three women and girls worldwide.

The good news:

  • 70% fewer mums could die in childbirth – if all girls had primary education.
  • 66% fewer child marriages could happen globally – if all girls had a secondary education.
  • US$28 trillion could be generated – if all gender gaps in work and society were closed.

If you believe that ALL girls should be able to build the future they want, then turn your outrage into action this International Day of the Girl!

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How Madame Awahou Codjo partnered with MCC to help her fish business thrive

March 14 2017 | By: GUEST BLOGGER


Join the fight against extreme poverty


By Christopher S. Davis, MCC Deputy Resident Country Director, Benin

Bass, red carp and sardine are among the wide variety of fish that fill the cold storage rooms of a small business owned by a female entrepreneur in Cotonou, Benin. AWA Fish, named after its proprietor, Madame Awahou Codjo, serves as a link between more than 400 fishing families and Benin’s active retail fish markets.


A fish market in Cotonou, Benin. (Photo credit: Theresa Carpenter/Wikimedia Commons)

MCC’s Benin Compact, completed in 2011, helped Codjo grow her business by financing the purchase of two walk-in freezers, one generator and two motorized boats, along with training in accounting and related software.

AWA Fish’s grant was part of a $17.3 million MCC-funded project to increase productivity, profitability and access to finance for micro-, small- and medium-sized businesses, which are the backbone of Benin’s economy. The project also helped strengthen the Government of Benin’s supervision of microfinance institutions and established a new credit bureau that provides microfinance institutions with current information on small businesses and other potential borrowers often underserved by large banks.


Madame Awahou Codjo is a small business owner in Cotonou who benefitted from MCC’s 2006 investments in Benin. Now, she stands to benefit from MCC’s $375 million Benin Power Compact.

Access to finance is cited as one of the top obstacles to doing business in Benin, particularly for women. Although Benin has many women-owned businesses in a variety of sectors from agriculture to crafts, the vast majority of them are small and not formally registered. Registered businesses such as AWA Fish provide critical tax revenue for the Government of Benin, which is unable to fully capture business tax revenue due to the country’s large informal sector.

For AWA Fish, MCC’s investment has meant room to grow: the business has more than doubled its storage capacity, from 170 tons in 2009 to 500 tons today, and has established greater credibility with local banks. In 2009, the business had a revolving line of credit of up to $80,000; today, that line of credit has doubled.

“We have increased our storage capacity,” Codjo said. “We have new employees. We have better information. We have better visibility with financial institutions.”

AWA Fish has also established better terms with a national network of fishing families. Before MCC’s investment, suppliers would not deliver fish without agreeing on the price first and they usually demanded immediate payment. With increased storage capacity, Codjo is now able to negotiate the price of fish the day after delivery and make payments days after that. And some of AWA Fish’s suppliers have even increased their catches.

MCC’s Benin Compact addressed obstacles to the country’s economic growth by improving access to finance, expanding a major port, promoting land security and creating a more efficient judicial system. In 2015, MCC took another step to invest in the productivity of businesses like Codjo’s: The agency signed a $375 million Power Compact with the Government of Benin to increase electricity production, improve distribution, and implement policy reforms crucial for sustainability and private-sector investment in the power sector.

For Codjo and other entrepreneurs in Benin, MCC’s investment in a strengthened power sector will help to reduce electricity imports — which account for approximately 90 percent of total power consumption — boost opportunities for growth, and provide a stable source of power in what has long been an unstable system strained by daily power outages.


Sardines on display at a market. (Photo credit: Notafly/Wikimedia Commons)

Codjo, who faces regular power blackouts, overstressed generators and freezers, and the threat of fire, keeps her electrician on speed dial. She foresees the economic advantages of a more reliable grid for her operation.

“If I have better access to electricity, it will allow me to earn more money,” she said, “because the money we are throwing toward buying a new generator, to repair this and to repair that, we won’t need to spend.”

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