Giving Childhood Diarrhea a Name

Over the course of my career I’ve spent more than 30 years working in various developing countries trying to better understand and fight infectious diseases. One of the things that alarmed me most was that in many places, parents and caretakers didn’t even have a word for diarrhea. Sadly, this wasn’t because diarrhea was rare. On the contrary, diarrhea was so common that it was seen as a normal part of early childhood, and thus didn’t need a name.  

Did You Say There Was Agreement About Something in Washington?

Let’s hope it’s not too good to be true, but it looks like Congress, both Republicans and Democrats, the White House, and USAID might agree on something—that U.S. foreign aid needs to be more transparent.

On Wednesday “Judge” Ted Poe (R-TX), joined by Rep. Gerry Connolly (D-VA) in the House, and Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Senator Ben Cardin (D-MD) in the Senate, introduced the Foreign Aid Transparency and Accountability Act of 2013 (H.R. 2638 and S. 1271).

A Critical Change: What the Humanitarian Field Must Do to Do Better

The humanitarian field is highly responsive to its fiercest critic – itself. Constant improvements are sought and solutions offered on how to better assist those in crisis.We often focus these evaluations on ourselves since we know that through greater coordination we can do more.

Why the G8 'Commitments' Lacked Measurable Actions

Last month G8 leaders met at the exclusive Lough Erne golf resort in Northern Ireland, United Kingdom. Yet, what were the practical implications for those living in extreme poverty around the world or – for that matter – the 99 percent of people living in the G8 countries? Were concrete actions taken?

Before the summit, I wrote a piece about measurable actions the G8 should take that would bring meaningful change to people around the world. So, how did they do?

Youth and Media: Political Engagement in New Spaces

"Young people in development are both a project of reform and agents of change. This population is not static. They engage on multiple levels.” – Dr .Loubna Skalli-Hanna, Author, Editor and Professor at American University, School of International Service

In Lebanon, Refugees and Residents Alike Struggle to Survive

“Our neighbors provide us with bread – we are four families, 25 people. They have been letting us stay in this apartment even though we have not been able to pay rent for three months. They keep asking us, but we are not able. I don’t think they’ll kick us out, but we don’t know.”

A Syrian refugee in northern Lebanon

Supreme Court Stands With NGOs in Landmark Free-Speech Ruling

Today, NGOs scored a major legal victory when the Supreme Court ruled 6-2 that a USAID policy requirement infringed upon Americans’ right to free speech. The case, USAID v AOSI, challenges a 2003 law that requires all groups receiving U.S government funds for international HIV and AIDS work to have a policy explicitly opposing prostitution.

Urban Refugees Use Creativity on Road to Self-Reliance

(Nairobi) June 15, 2013 — The nephew and daughter-in-law of a refugee from Rwanda make sandals June 14, 2013, in the home the tree share in Nairobi. The hand-crafted sandals will be sold via the the Jesuit Refugee Service Mikono Craft Shop in Nairobi.

Hearts and Homes in Western Myanmar

What would you take if you had to flee? In Rakhine state, western Myanmar, everyone I asked said the same thing: Family. Many saw their homes burnt down in the communal riots of June and October 2012. They were so surprised by the attacks that they herded everyone out without stopping to take a single thing.

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