A Good Year for U.S. Foreign Assistance

If you had told me a year ago that 2014 would be a good year for U.S. foreign assistance funding, I would not have believed you (no matter how much I may have wanted to). It’s not that efforts to reduce global poverty and meet humanitarian needs were being singled out for cuts – the whole federal budget was being axed. Sequestration was about to take a 5% chunk out of every account in the government and Congress was threatening to spend the rest of the year careening from one debt limit crisis to another government shutdown.

The Children of Typhoon Haiyan: Tales of Resiliency, Heroes and Recovery

Part 1: Mass graves, widespread losses, and begging children

Two main issues weighed heavily on my mind as the plane landed in Tacloban five days after Typhoon Haiyan ripped through Eastern Visayas.

Firstly, it was the prospect of unaccompanied and separated children. With dead bodies lining the streets, we assumed that we would be documenting many cases of children unaccompanied or who have lost their parents in the storm.

Reflecting on the Legacy of a Great Man

On April 27, 1994, millions queued in line for their first opportunity to vote. One man came in a wheelbarrow, having no legs to bring him to the polls. He had waited his whole life for this moment and would not be denied the right because of a disability. And with his vote – a simple X because he had been denied the opportunity to learn to read and write – he helped end apartheid and made history, ushering in freedom for South Africa with Nelson Mandela as its leader. I was married to one of the poll watchers.

Implementing Human Rights Education: Setting Youth Up for Success

Why don’t we discuss human rights violations with our youth? Are we afraid of shattering the façade of perfection we have built around them?

The Gift that Can't Be Gift Wrapped

As nearly any guide book or travel magazine will tell you, my home country of Madagascar is indescribably beautiful. It’s heaven on earth for anyone who loves the outdoors, with a wealth of breathtaking landscapes. Within one island, we have rain forests, deserts, beaches and barrier reefs – and all of the wildlife pertaining to them.

Global Grandmothers

As the head of an organization that helps older people around the world, I speak with lots of grandmothers. And each time I do, I remember my own.


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Disinformation Toolkit 

In June, InterAction released its Disinformation Toolkit to address the emerging threat of online disinformation. The toolkit highlights how disinformation can negatively impact the work of INGOs at home and abroad, and provides guidance on how to identify risks, develop organizational risk mitigation plans, and build resilience to disinformation campaigns. Learn more.


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