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The Action Thread Part Two

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Do you have a question about challenging behaviour and learning disability? 🤔
Join us for our online 'Ask the Expert' event with Yvonne Newbold on Mencap's online community. 👋
Post your questions or share your story.✍️
Visit: https://bit.ly/2VMH7Di👈

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Running in the 2020 Virgin Money London Marathon? 👟
Want access to exclusive discounts? 💷
Looking for expert running advice? 🏃‍♀️ 🏃‍♂️ 🏃‍♀️
Come along to our New Balance shopping event. 😎
We even have free pizza vouchers from Mod Pizza! 🍕 🍕 🍕
Book now and join us this Tuesday: https://bit.ly/2J3aBrf 👈
#RunWithUs #HereIAm
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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What is your most memorable flying experience? ✈️
Ki is two years old and has Down's Syndrome.
On a flight he was invited to the cockpit by Captain Weis, a pilot retiring after 35 years, and given the Captain's personal wings.
Ki was overjoyed, clapped and signed "Thank you."
We think it is going to take a lot to beat this special experience.❤️
https://bit.ly/2pqR0dO

 

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CULTURE

5 podcast episodes every activist needs

April 30 2019 | By: SADOF ALEXANDER

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Chances are, you know someone who’s obsessed with podcasts. You might even be that person. Podcasts have exploded into popularity in recent years. In fact, there’s over 500,000 on Apple Podcasts alone!

Whether you’re a long-time listener, or looking for a place to start, we’ve got a great list of podcast episodes for you. What makes it so great? Each one of these episodes covers an important issue, so you can learn something new while you listen!

Sooo Many White Guys
Phoebe, Javier Muñoz, and Gayle Smith Fight the Good Fight!

In case it wasn’t clear, we love Phoebe Robinson. The best-selling author, podcast queen, and ONE and (RED) ambassador uses her influence to talk about important issues, always mixing in a few laughs.

She began her podcast Sooo Many White Guys as a way to push back against the predominance of white men in comedy. Her podcast often features guests who are women and/or people of color talking about race, feminism, and social issues.

Her most recent episode features none other than our own CEO, Gayle Smith, and actor Javier Munoz, who’s also a (RED) ambassador! They discuss how Gayle and Javier got to where they are today, and give some important insights into the HIV/AIDS crisis.

African Tech RoundUp
Wajenzi’s Alain Nkurukiye on Galvanising Diasporans to Back Economic Growth in Africa

African Tech RoundUp covers everything digital, technological, and innovative coming out of Africa. This organization, based in Johannesburg, produces podcasts, op-eds, media projects, and more. Their podcasts dive deep into the growing tech scene with guests who are working in the industry.

This episode features guest Alain Nkurukiye, the founder of tech startup Wajenzi. When he worked in the Netherlands, he wanted to give back to his home in Burundi. Now, his mission is to give the African diaspora a way to invest in entrepreneurs in their home nations.

Sincerely, Hueman
2018 Year End Special (Part 2)

Sincerely, Hueman tells stories about everyday people who are changing communities. Each episode features leaders that spark social good through local and global movements. They share a diverse array of stories, showing that everyone has the ability to create positive change for people worldwide.

The second part of their 2018 end-of-year special features Ashaba Faridah. Ashaba, one of the few female pilots in Uganda, is the founder of Bambino Life Foundation. Her organization encourages girls to get an education, creates awareness for children living with disability, and donates needed items to orphanages.

The Guilty Feminist
Period Poverty with Gemma Cairney, Amika George, Grace Campbell

The Guilty Feminist is a comedy podcast that balances hilarious wit with smart discussion. Hosts Deborah Frances-White and Sofie Hagen invite guests to go in-depth on all things feminism.

This episode is about period poverty. Their guests are activists who tackle period taboos and work to make sanitary products accessible. The discussion highlights the global issue of period poverty and how we can stop it. Of course, some tongue-in-cheek comedy about menstruation is also in the mix.

Pod Save the World
The Worst Humanitarian Crisis since WWII

There’s tons of political podcasts out there, but few can break down big issues like Pod Save the World does. This foreign policy podcast makes global issues relatable and easy to understand. They also focus on how people can get involved.

This episode dives deep into the current refugee crisis, how it happened, and how it affects us all. The guest, David Miliband, highlights how the circumstances for displacement are often man-made. But, there is a silver lining – everyone, particularly young people, can help solve this crisis.

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GIRLS AND WOMEN

Activists write to the past in powerful new docu-series

October 10 2019 | By: SADOF ALEXANDER

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If you could say anything to yourself as a kid, what would you say?

That’s the question behind ONE’s new documentary series, Yours in Power. Three activists working to create gender equality have written to themselves as young girls, offering advice and insights for the road ahead. Their inspiring words prove the power of a strong voice and an unwavering determination to create an equal world.

Any activist knows that changing the world can involve a lot of letters. Whether it be addressed to politicians, world leaders, or fellow advocates, there’s no doubt that words have immense power in sparking action. Now, these three powerful women are using that power to reflect on their own journeys as advocates and show that anyone, anywhere, can change the world.

The first of three documentaries will be released on October 29, followed by the next two in November and December. Before you hear their powerful stories, get to know a bit about the three activists we’re highlighting:

Melene Rossouw

Melene Rossow grew up on the Cape Flats of South Africa. Inspired by her mother’s fight for gender equality, she became determined to fight for the rights of women and girls through elevating their voices.

In 2009, she became an Attorney in the High Court of South Africa. She is also the founder of the Women Lead Movement, where she runs seminars to teach women about human rights, leadership, campaigning, and democratic power. Her goal is to empower women to be leaders for change in their communities and hold governments accountable to protect and secure women’s rights.

She sees the tough road to equality ahead. Luckily, she is up for the challenge: “Restructuring our world so that women may flourish is going to be a tough job. But you will fight because you believe that gender equality and justice must be achieved.”

Look out for Melene’s Yours in Power film on October 29.

Dr. Joannie Marlene Bewa

As a young girl, Dr. Joannie Bewa experienced the fear and challenge of medical issues first-hand when she almost died from an asthma attack. Now, inspired by the doctor who treated her as a child, she views that experience as the beginning of her journey to becoming an award-winning physician.

From her home in the Benin Republic, she is advocating for every woman to have access to health services. She founded the Young Beninese Leaders Association (YBLA), which has provided over 10,000 youth with HIV/AIDS awareness. YBLA has also trained more than 3,000 girls and women on sexual and reproductive health, leadership, and entrepreneurship.

Ultimately, she hopes to create “a world where no woman will die while giving birth. A world where every woman has access to health services and quality education.”

Look out for Joannie’s Yours in Power film on November 12.

Wadi Ben-Hirki

Wadi Ben-Hirki, like many young girls, grew up being told that she should be “seen and not heard.” The gender discrimination she faced as a kid became the source of her strength, inspiring her to take action and advocate for equality.

She founded the Wadi Ben-Hirki Foundation at only 17 years old. Her foundation educates marginalized communities, including women and youths, on how to be advocates for the issues that affect them. On top of her work with the foundation, she collaborates with other youth advocates as a ONE Champion.

Her fight against poverty, illiteracy, and child marriage aims to create a society of equal opportunities for all. She hopes that her activism and her story will enable others to achieve their goals and live freely.

Look out for Wadi’s Yours in Power film on December 3.

If you could say anything to your past self, what would it be? On October 11, International Day of the Girl, join us on Facebook and Twitter to leave a message for your younger self. And be sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel so that you catch each documentary as soon as it drops!

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No matter if you're young, old or somewhere in-between, it's all of our jobs to make sure leaders know what issues we're passionate about.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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CULTURE

3 newsletters you need in your inbox right now

1 August 2019 8:10PM UTC | By: EMILY MILLER, JANE EAGLES

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Take action for women everywhere

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Cut through the noise (and the junk mail) and get the most important, punchy, and downright inspiring newsletters with these awesome subscriptions. We’re raving about them here at ONE – we think you should find out what all the fuss is about too!

These newsletters deliver the stories of real women and girls straight to your inbox. So go ahead and hit subscribe. Your inbox will thank you.

She Leads Africa

She Leads Africa is building the next generation of fierce and strong women in the workplace one email at at time. Their newsletters deliver inspiration, information, and career advice straight to your inbox. These women are slaying the world of business, with their innovation and ambition, after reading this newsletter we’re sure some of that #AfricanGirlMagic will have rubbed off on you too!

Love Our Girls

Launched by Danai Gurira in 2016, Love Our Girls brings the injustices faced by girls and women around the world to the top of our inboxes every month. By increasing our awareness of what’s happening around the world, we can empower and uplift these female voices and work towards ending the injustices that they face.

Assembly

By girls and for girls, Assembly is a bi-monthly newsletter from The Malala Fund featuring the stories and issues girls and young women really care about — from following the week in the life of a girl, to detailed essays on how young girls are leading the charge for a better world. And if you are or know a girl who has an inspiring story or to share, Assembly wants to hear from you! They take submissions on their website.

Take action for women everywhere

Dear World Leaders,

We are the women at the frontlines of the fight against gender inequality and global poverty.

Every day we see the determination and dignity of girls and women facing down the toughest challenges. We see real advances and the power of people to achieve change. We won’t surrender this fight, but we need you to play your part.

You promised to achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls by 2030, but at the current rate of progress, this will take 108 years. This is unacceptable. We need genuine progress, not grand promises.

We want implementation and accountability at every level - from this year’s G7 Summit to the Global Fund Replenishment; from our African Union leaders to our community leaders. We will be looking for your actions not your words; for funding to follow promises; and policy to turn into practice. It’s both the right and the smart thing to do for everyone.

To accelerate progress men must demand change with us so that we rise united not divided. And women must have a seat at the decision-making table – because you can’t change what you don’t see.

We’re not looking for your sympathy, we’re demanding your action. Because none of us are equal until all of us are equal.

Yours,

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6 quotes that will inspire your fight for gender equality
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GIRLS AND WOMEN

6 quotes that will inspire your fight for gender equality

11 October 2019 2:46PM UTC | By: SADOF ALEXANDER

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Every child has the potential to achieve astounding things. But for girls everywhere, that potential is cut short by discrimination and inequality.

This International Day of the Girl, we’re looking to activists who have faced these hurdles and overcome them. We asked gender equality activists what they would say to their younger selves. Their words of advice and encouragement are sure to empower anyone in the fight for equality.

Here are six powerful quotes to inspire the next generation of activists:

“Find your identity, your true self and live your mission … Your power is your radical self. Find it.” — Aya Chebbi

Aya Chebbi is a pan-African feminist and world-renowned blogger. She’s passionate about empowering youth to fight for change, which she does as an African Union Youth Envoy. She’s also the founder of the Youth Programme of Holistic Empowerment Mentoring (Y-PHEM), Afrika Youth Movement (AYM), and Afresist, a youth leadership program.

Earlier this year, she took her skills to the Women7 Summit in Paris to advocate for women and girls on the global stage. She shared her thoughts on the only way we can fight injustice.

“If you believe in your idea of change and are willing to work hard, sooner or later that dream will be a reality.” — Naomi Tulay Solanke

Naomi Tulay Solanke is the Founder and Executive Director of Community Health Initiative, which provides reusable and affordable health products for women and girls. She also launched PADS4GIRLS, which trains women to produce sanitary pads. Both of these programs aim to empower girls to take control of their reproductive and menstrual health.

Naomi explains the importance of menstrual health in this inspiring TEDTalk:

“An undying spirit is the primary source of help because it is within you.” — Fridah Githuku

Fridah Githuku is the Executive Director of GROOTS Kenya, a national grassroots movement, which gives women visibility and decision-making power in their communities. GROOTS has invested in nearly 3,500 women-led groups across Kenya, sparking local, human-led change. Fridah is passionate about the role of land rights in achieving gender equality, which she advocates for as a partner with Equal Measures 2030.

Fridah’s work led to her being named one of our Women of the Year in 2018!

“Being a young African girl is not a hurdle to overcome, but a force to be reckoned with.” — Dr. Joannie Marlene Bewa

Dr. Joannie Marlene Bewa is an accomplished HIV/AIDS advocate and founder of the Young Beninese Leaders Association. This youth and women-led program has trained more than 3,000 girls and women on sexual and reproductive health, leadership, and entrepreneurship. She is also a “Goalkeeper for the Goals” for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

Dr. Joannie Marlene Bewa was also one of our 2018 Women of the Year for her outstanding work on women’s health.

“You will often feel as if you don’t fit, but it has never been your destiny to fit in. You were born to stand out.” — Melene Rossouw

Melene Rossouw is an Attorney in the High Court of South Africa. She is also the founder of the Women Lead Movement, where she runs seminars to teach women about human rights, leadership, campaigning, and democratic power. She wants to empower women as leaders for change in their communities and hold governments accountable to protect and secure women’s rights.

Back in March, Melene met with comedian and best-selling novelist Phoebe Robinson to talk about her work. You can find the entire Q&A on our Instagram.

“Life doesn’t always give us what we deserve, but rather, what we demand. And so you must continue to push harder than any other person in the room.” — Wadi Ben-Hirki

At 17 years old, Wadi Ben-Hirki founded the Wadi Ben-Hirki Foundation, which seeks to impact marginalised communities through humanitarianism and activism, particularly in Northern Nigeria. She also serves on the African Leadership Institute Youth Advisory Board and was the special guest from Africa at the 2018 Y20 Summit.

On top of all that, she’s a ONE Champion! Earlier this year, she and other ONE Champions met with Vice President Professor Yemi Osinbajo to demand a better future for Nigeria’s youths.

The empowering messages don’t stop here. We want to hear your messages to your younger selves. Visit our Facebook and Twitter on IDG to leave your message and inspire future generations!

Looking for more inspiration? Check out the trailer for our new docu-series, Yours in Power, premiering on October 29!

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At last week’s The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, (RED) ambassador Connie and her daughter Lubona took the stage to announce (RED)’s bold pledge—$150M over the next three years!

Check out her incredible remarks here.

https://www.red.org/reditorial/red-just-pledged-150-million-to-the-global-fund?fbclid=IwAR34BXdlz31w1_1NC1kBl1MbkLgnOlCB6KLjlTFSu4FCr8ytTD_70L4TNWA

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The Society for Music Education in Ireland has announced a call for papers for the 9th Annual SMEI Conference.

The conference will take place from 24 - 25 January 2020 at the School of Arts Education and Movement, DCU, St. Patrick's Campus, Drumcondra.

Submissions can be made at: tiny.cc/SMEI2020

Closing date: 15 November 2019

24th-25th January 2020
in association with the
School of Arts Education and Movement, DCU
St Patrick’s Campus, Drumcondra

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Foto de Music Generation.

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Tonight, participants from the first 10 years of the brilliant Suburban Sounds project will regroup to perform songs they've written, in celebration of the programme's 10th anniversary.

Concert deets: Fri 18 Oct, 8pm at The Civic Tallaght

Our partners Music Generation South Dublin have enjoyed some excellent collaborations with the SubSounds team during its first decade - here's to another 10!

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Well done to CCI's Voluntary CEO Adi Roche who just won the President's Award at the Tipperary Chamber Awards!

'A dhuine uisle, a chairde gael…gurbh mile maith agaibh. Thank you for this prestigious award…the Chamber of Commerce President’s Award. I accept it not only on my own behalf but in the name of our countless volunteers throughout the country…and most importantly I accept this award on behalf of the victims and survivors of Chernobyl. This award sends out a LOUD and CLEAR message that they are NOT FORGOTTEN! There is HOPE!' - Adi Roche

#tippbizawards

Foto de Chernobyl Children International.

 

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Well done to our Dublin CCI volunteers for organising a fantastic fundraiser in Northside Shopping Centre today. Congratulations to Theresa Moore who was winner of the big spin and won a lovely hamper. A gorgeous prize in the lead up to the festive season. Thanks to everyone who entered and helped fundraise for CCI Dublin!

 

 

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Thank you so much to the mega talented Kami for sending us on the full collection of his limited edition Chernobyl prints. This interpretation of the Chernobyl disaster is so real yet so creatively done. Kami is very kindly donating all the proceeds from the charity prints to Chernobyl Children International! Thank you!

If you're interested in supporting this project you can order your prints here: https://www.ecwid.com/…/getyourmerch/Chernobyl-Charity-Prin…

Foto de Chernobyl Children International.

Foto de Chernobyl Children International.

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ONE takes over Big Brother Naija for healthcare pitch competition
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HEALTH

ONE takes over Big Brother Naija for healthcare pitch competition

17 October 2019 4:12PM UTC | By: ULRICH JANSE VAN VUUREN

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The ONE Campaign recently took over the reality show Big Brother Naija to ask the housemates: How can we ensure all Nigerians have access to the healthcare they deserve? The housemates each pitched their ideas to convince an expert panel and viewers on the importance of successfully implementing HUWE, Nigeria’s new primary healthcare system.

Seyi Awolowo, a medical doctor and grandson of one of Nigeria’s founding fathers Chief Obafemi Awolowo, won the advocacy challenge. He will travel to New York with ONE for the 2020 United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) and will join ONE’s fight for healthcare access for all Nigerians.

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Seyi Awolowo, winner of the ONE health advocacy challenge at Big Brother Naija with Waje, Bisola and ONE Country Director, Serah Makka-Ugbabe

The housemates presented to a panel comprised of ONE Country Director, Serah Makka-Ugbabe, and ONE Ambassadors Bisola and Waje. Seyi stood out with this demonstrated knowledge of Nigerian healthcare outcomes and the strong case he made for HUWE implementation.

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The ONE health advocacy panel at Big Brother Naija with Waje, ONE Country Director, Serah Makka-Ugbabe and Bisola deliberating the housemates’ presentations.

HUWE is a federal health programme aimed at delivering a minimum package of health services to all Nigerians through the primary healthcare system. 

The BBNaija competition was part of ONE’s Make Naija Stronger campaign to ensure the successful implementation of HUWE throughout Nigeria. In January 2019, the Basic Health Care Provision Fund (BHCPF) was publicly launched under the name “HUWE”. The name was crowdsourced and is an Ebira word meaning “life”.

If properly implemented, HUWE will deliver much needed healthcare services to Nigerians, help reverse Nigeria’s poor health outcomes and move the country significantly closer to universal health coverage.

Each year, 58,000 women die in Nigeria due to pregnancy and childbirth-related causes, making Nigeria the second largest contributor to maternal mortality in the world. Every day, 2,300 Nigerian children under the age of 5 die due to preventable disease. Life expectancy in Nigeria is 55 years (men), 56 years (women). By comparison, Ghanaians can expect to live significantly longer, 62 years for men and 64 years for women.

“HUWE could be a transformative program for Nigeria. It is the building block of having universal health coverage for all Nigerians,” explained Serah Makka Ugbabe, ONE’s Nigeria Country Director. 

“Though the program has just being launched, it will not be successful except Nigerians know it exists and demand for it. ONE is delighted to welcome Seyi on board as an advocate for healthcare delivery to all Nigerians, regardless of gender, income or location. His voice will be a powerful addition to our advocacy.” 

It is now up to the Africa’s governments to respond to the clamour of their citizens by prioritizing agriculture in national investments.

Join the fight for better healthcare in Nigeria by becoming a ONE member.

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Young musicians from Carlow, Laois, Waterford and Wicklow are set to travel to Sitges, Catalonia to perform at Sitges Live - Creative Connexions this weekend, a four-day celebration of music, performances and workshops.

On Saturday 26 October the young musicians will perform in their own very special concert, ‘Alborada and the Dawning of New Irish Music’ at the Teatro El Prado.

Music Generation Wicklow's Rithim Orchestra will perform three pieces from the 'Slí Mhantáin Suite' composed for them by Rachel Duffy, Tim Doyle and Gerry O’Donnell.

The Music Generation Laois Trad Orchestra will perform 'Visions and Voices', composed by Martin Tourish in collaboration with the young musicians.

Music Generation Carlow and Music Generation Waterford young musicians will perform together on 'The Colour of Warmth,' composed by Martin Tourish and co-funded through the Music Generation/ Arts Council Ireland partnership.

A wonderful, music-filled weekend ahead!

https://www.creative-connexions.eu/?fbclid=IwAR0Ej-J_TOHLP3IBy3J8OtaIS5dXyb_oEWeIOijUk1vCdr6IJ5lGCgoG_tM

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"I just felt really low. I just went for a run and it made it better. It clears everything."

Running completely changed Megan's life for the better.

Now she wants to create real and long lasting change for the UK's 1.5 million people with a learning disability by running the 2020 Virgin Money London Marathon.

Will you support Megan in this challenge: https://bit.ly/2MYPTda

#RunWithUs #HereIAm

 

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Thank you to everyone who joined us at our New Balance event. We hope you all had a fantastic time like us and came away with all your questions answered about running a marathon and learning more about our #TeamMencap running squad.

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Today is United Nations Day which marks the anniversary of the entry into force of the UN Charter in 1945 . With the ratification of this founding document by the majority of its signatories, including the five permanent members of the Security Council, the United Nations officially came into being.

Chernobyl Children International is proud to be a United Nations NGO. We are grateful to the UN for declaring 26 April Chernobyl Day and even more thankful to the UN for inviting Adi, Julie and the writers and cast of Chernobyl to speak at the UN earlier this year. Here are some pictures from this incredibly special day.

#UNDay #Chernobyl

Foto de Chernobyl Children International.

Foto de Chernobyl Children International.

Foto de Chernobyl Children International.

Foto de Chernobyl Children International.

Foto de Chernobyl Children International.

Foto de Chernobyl Children International.

 

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HIV/AIDS

How this baker became an international figurehead in the fight against HIV

4 October 2019 8:36PM UTC | By: NEWS DEEPLY

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Sign now: we demand more action in the fight against AIDS

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Before she was diagnosed with HIV, Morolake Odetoyinbo, or Rolake, was living the life she’d always dreamed of. She had graduated from performing arts school, gotten married, and was running her own small bakery in northern Nigeria, where she lived with her husband on a military base. Then her husband tested positive for HIV, and five months later Rolake, 28, received the same diagnosis. Her doctor gave her between 5-12 years to live.

“At the time I was just a regular young person trying to make something of my life,” she says. “When I got my diagnosis I was depressed and terrified. All I wanted to do was to find a way out, which was impossible because of the stigma, because of the shame.”

Rolake’s diagnosis came a year after Nigerian musician Fela Kuti had died from AIDS, and so to her, AIDS meant death. She had seen horrifying pictures on TV of people dying from AIDS, and she thought the same thing would happen to her.

She lived in silence for three years, terrified that her friends and family would find out. Then, under the stress of it all, her marriage ended and she moved back to Lagos to be with her family.

Slowly she found the courage to reveal her status. She was surprised that some members of her family encouraged her to sign up for training as a counsellor for a new HIV/AIDS hotline. When the hotline launched, it was Rolake who took the very first call.

“That’s how I came to really understand HIV,” she says. “When I understood that it was a virus, and knew the way it worked, the terror of not knowing what was happening in my body ceased.”

It was the very beginning of a journey that would lead her to where she is today: a prominent voice in the international fight against HIV/AIDS. She became a bold and vocal advocate for the rights of the marginalised, women and girls in particular.

Free and accessible treatment for all

Rolake not only advocates for the removal of stigma, but for free access to treatment for all. She was pleased when initiatives brought free HIV treatment to an initial 5,000 adults in Nigeria in 2004. But patients still had to pay fees for the blood work required to qualify for these antiretroviral treatment (ARVs). “We had 5,000 people getting free drugs, but they couldn’t afford the lab work required to access ARVs,” she says.

Incensed, she founded her own organisation, Positive Action for Treatment Access (PATA), in the hope of ensuring that every person in Nigeria with an illness—no matter their situation—can gain access to the medical treatment they need. PATA has since won funding from the Ford Foundation, Unilever and the African Union. They’re now able to run summer camps for young people, including those born HIV positive, and Mary’s Home, a residential school for future female leaders living with HIV.

Rolake has also hosted her own TV show on the wide-reaching Nigerian networks, as well as served as a newspaper columnist, a member of the Strategic and Technical Advisory Committee for the World Health Organisation (WHO) on HIV, and as the Nigeria country lead for the Campaign to End Pediatric AIDS in Africa.

She now splits her time between upstate New York, where she is a mental health counsellor and professor of gender rights and sexual/reproductive health, and Lagos, where she serves as Executive Director of PATA and is practically a household name.

Passion and compassion

There is nothing that Rolake is more passionate about than the role of women and girls in the fight against HIV/AIDS. Today, 1.9 million Nigerians are living with HIV, and more than half of people living with HIV still do not have suppressed viral loads.

In Nigeria, women aged 15-49 years are more than twice as likely to be living with HIV than men. “It’s women who are family care providers… but walk into any big HIV meeting and who do you see around the table? You see men,” she says. “Women and girls are doing the dirty work every day, but their efforts in HIV/AIDS have not been documented.”

She is among several women featured in Nothing Without Us, an award-winning film that documents the brave, bold work of HIV-positive women around the world and their efforts to fight for treatment and a place at the table. “Women have always been at the forefront of the HIV movement, but unfortunately, until now, the story has not been told,” she says. “We’re telling it now.”

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

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INSPI(RED) COSTUME IDEAS: 10 ACTIVISTS TO DRESS AS THIS HALLOWEEN

 
 

With Halloween just around the corner, it’s costume season. Why not shake it up this year? Put away the zombie makeup and creepy mask, and use your costume to pay homage to an iconic activist. There are so many amazing people who strove to make the world a more welcoming, inclusive, and peaceful place—and so many of them have unmistakable style, or at least a few of memorable looks. So pick your favorite activist, and create a different kind of costume this year.

HERE ARE A FEW IDEAS TO GET YOU STARTED:

 

WHO: ROSA PARKS

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Why: You probably know the story of seamstress Rosa Parks refusing to surrender her seat to a white male passenger on an Alabama bus in 1955. But that was just the beginning—her arrest set off a wave of protests across the United States that would lead to her being named “the mother of the modern day civil rights movement.” Rosa Parks devoted her life to championing equal rights, serving as a mentor, role model, and advocate for youth and disadvantaged communities.

What to Wear: The booking photo of Rosa Parks has become a powerful symbol of the struggle for human rights — and a great costume idea if you want to raise awareness. You’ll need a plain pair of glasses, a white collared shirt, a small cap, and a button-up jacket with a skirt to match. But most important is the famous plaque with the number 7053—and of course, a small white flower in your hair.

WHO: BILLIE JEAN KING

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Why: Regardless of whether you’re a tennis fan, you’re likely familiar with Billie Jean King. In 60s and 70s, while touring as a professional tennis player (and winning a record 20 Wimbledon titles), Billie Jean King fought for gender equality in sports. She championed sports being opened to women, women’s sports being covered by the media, and equal pay for women in sports and all other workplaces. She testified before Congress advocating for the passage of Title IX—a law ensuring that anyone, regardless of gender, has equal access to federally-funded educational opportunities and programs, such as sports. Though her tennis career is long over, at 74 years old she continues to fight for women’s equal rights in sports, equal pay and inclusive leadership in the workforce, and LGBTQ rights.

What to Wear: To dress as Billie Jean King, you’ll need large, clear glasses, a tank top or short-sleeve shirt with a collar, white athletic shorts or a tennis skirt, and sneakers with mid-calf socks. If you feel like getting really into your costume, add sweatbands on your wrists or carry around an old tennis racket.

WHO: PRINCESS DIANA

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Why: In addition to being a style icon, Princess Diana of Whales was an activist who worked tirelessly on behalf of a number of humanitarian issues. She is perhaps best known for challenging the stigma surrounding HIV/AIDS and gay men. In 1987, she publicly shook hands with an HIV-positive patient without wearing gloves, disproving the myth that HIV/AIDS was passed through touch.

What to Wear: Big earrings and bright colors were essential parts of so many of Princess Diana’s looks. To channel your inner Princess Di this Halloween, pair a long dress with bold accessories, add a tiara, and you’ll be good to go.

WHO: NELSON MANDELA

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Why: Who better to pay tribute to this Halloween than a Nobel Peace Prize Winner? Nelson Mandela was a nonviolence activist, global human rights advocate, and the first-ever black president of South Africa. For 20 years, he directed a campaign that peacefully fought the South African government’s racist policies. His actions landed him in prison for 27 years and also made him the face of the anti-apartheid movement around the world. 

What to Wear: Nelson Mandela was known for wearing boldly-colored shirts with crazy patterns. So if you want to dress up like him, you’ll want to wear the craziest shirt you own. Take your costume up a notch by spray painting your hair gray or printing out a Nobel Peace Prize certificate to carry around.

WHO: GLORIA STEINEM

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Why: Gloria Steinem has been fighting for women’s rights since the late 1960s. She co-founded New York Magazine and Ms. Magazine, and helped to found the Women’s Action Alliance, a national information center that specialized in nonsexist, multiracial children’s education, and the National Women’s Political Caucus, a group that works to advance the number of pro-equality women elected and appointed to public office. On top of all this, she wrote many articles and made frequent appearances on TV and at rallies, making her one of feminism’s most famous figures.

What to Wear: You likely already have almost everything you need to pull of Gloria Steinem’s classic 70s look. To start, be sure to wear your hair in a middle part. In terms of your outfit, you’ll want to wear one of your favorite fall turtlenecks with your widest leg jeans. If you really want to complete the look, find yourself a pair of Steinem’s signature blue aviator glasses, or any big glasses for that matter.

WHO: ELIZABETH TAYLOR

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Why: Honestly, who doesn’t want to dress up as Elizabeth Taylor, with her signature dark eyeliner and extravagant jewelry? The legendary movie star is one of the most acclaimed actors of all time. But what you may not know is that she was also the first high-profile celebrity to come out in support of people living with HIV/AIDS. In early 1985, Elizabeth Taylor took on the role of chairman for the Commitment to Life dinner—the first major AIDS benefit. She then decided to take her activism even further and co-founded the American Foundation for AIDS Research. Six years later, she established the Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation to provide care and education to at-risk communities and people living with HIV/AIDS. When she started her campaigns, she was a lone crusader. But in just a couple years, she had changed the entire conversation around HIV/AIDS.

What to Wear: An Elizabeth Taylor costume is pretty simple to put together. All you need is a cocktail dress, a sparkly necklace or earrings, and that smoky cat eye makeup she’s so well-known for. Want some bonus points? Grab some colored contacts! Elizabeth Taylor’s eyes were such a deep, entrancing shade of blue that they were often described as lavender or violet.

WHO: W. E. B. DU BOIS

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Why: Despite being born into the deeply divided America of the mid-1800s, W. E. B. Du Bois went on to graduate with a doctorate from Harvard and focus his academic career on social issues affecting the black community. In 1905, he established the Niagara Movement with the aim of ending racial segregation and disenfranchisement, and in 1909 he was instrumental in creating the interracial National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), where he served as both director and magazine editor. His activism helped make the civil rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s possible. 

What to Wear: You don’t need much to do a passable impression of W. E. B. Du Bois. His thick handlebar mustache and goatee are his trademarks. Wear a suit with a stiff, starched white collar and bowtie. Then when people ask, “Who are you supposed to be?”, you can surprise them with a crash course in civil rights history. Or simply hand them a copy of one of Du Bois’ books.

WHO: YOKO ONO AND JOHN LENNON

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Why: Talk about an activist power couple. If you and your significant other want to go trick-or-treating as a pair of global peacemakers, Yoko Ono and John Lennon are the perfect choice. They first met in 1966 at one of Yoko Ono’s conceptual art shows and married in 1969. The couple would go on to be the faces—and voices—of the counterculture with their frequent protests, pointed social commentary and songs such as “Give Peace A Chance.”

What to Wear: To impersonate these two, you’ve got to have two things: the voluminous long hair and the perfectly circular glasses. Beyond that, you’ll each just need a white outfit. If you have yellow-tinted shades for John Lennon, and a big floppy hat for Yoko Ono, you’re golden. Lastly, don’t forget to throw up peace signs in your photos.

WHO: GRETA THUNBERG

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Why: At only 16 years old, this Swedish badass has become the face of climate change activism around the world. In case you missed it, last month, Greta led the largest climate strike in history, which included an estimated 4 million people across 161 countries. She’s also responsible for launching the “Fridays for Future” movement, encouraging students to skip school on Fridays to demand action on climate change from their governments. Greta had the opportunity to speak at the United Nations Climate Action Summit in New York on September 23rd, but to avoid the carbon emissions that would have come from flying, she sailed across the Atlantic on a zero-emissions boat.

What to Wear: If you want to look like Greta, there is one absolute must: pigtail braids. In terms of clothing, you’ll likely be able to find everything you need in your closet (or a friend’s closet). Throw on any collared shirt, layer it with a zip-up hoodie sweatshirt, and complete the look with a beanie. To take your costume to the next level (and make sure everyone knows who you are), recreate Greta’s iconic “SKOLSTREJK FOR KLIMATET” sign—even if it’s just on a piece of printer paper.

WHO: GILBERT BAKER

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Why: You’re no doubt familiar with the rainbow flag and what it stands for—but do you know about the man who designed it? Gilbert Baker was an activist for gay rights, as well as a talented vexillographer (aka: flag maker). As the LGBT community rallied for equality through the 1960s and 1970s, they realized they need a new emblem: that’s when Gilbert Baker stepped up with a design that stood for unity, diversity, hope and pride—and to this day, it continues to connect people worldwide.

What to Wear: As an accomplished textile artist, Gilbert Baker never shied away from glitz and glitter—beads, gems, sequins, you name it. Recreate his flair with bold costume jewelry and a floppy, bedazzled beret. Oh, and a rainbow scarf, of course.

 
 

THESE ARE ONLY A FEW OF THE THOUSANDS OF ACTIVISTS WHO HAVE FOUGHT TO MAKE THE WORLD A MORE JUST AND EQUITABLE PLACE. THIS OCTOBER, JOIN (RED)’S FIGHT TO END TO AIDS AND ADD YOUR NAME TO THE LIST.

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