Category Archives: Global awareness

To #EndEbola The World Needs To Be #UnitedAgainstEbola

To #EndEbola The World Needs To Be #UnitedAgainstEbola
Still frame from the ONE Campaign video Ebola: Waiting

Still frame from the ONE Campaign video Ebola: Waiting

One of the cruelties of Ebola is that is goes against the very core of our human nature, the instinct to care for others. Like the NPR Story about the infant, still young enough to nurse, left in a box at the clinic where her mother had just died from Ebola. The baby had tested negative so far, so of course the group of nurses took turns caring for the baby. How could you not?  Ultimately the baby became sick and died, as did most of the caregivers, the nurses.

Tragic stories like this have been playing out in West Africa for far to long. Ebola is stoppable. We have seen it done. We need to get it done. Nigeria serves as a great example where a swift local response with in place medical, and vaccine infrastructure helped to halt the spread. Due to a concerted effort and funding to eradicate Polio from the region, Nigeria already had the necessary health care infrastructure to be able to contain and manage the Ebola outbreak when it hit. According to Dr. Chris Elias,  president of the Gates Foundation’s Global Development Program, previously done modeling studies based on experience with where and how Polio spread in the country, risk areas for Ebola were readily identifiable. Meanwhile countries with weak  health care systems were vulnerable to the outbreak.  Frontline healthcare workers in Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Guinea have been tirelessly devoting themselves to the crisis from the beginning, but thousands of lives could have been saved if the world responded more quickly with the necessary funds and medical resources critical to reduce the spread.

“every day we continue to wait – for funding to reach the ground, for nurses and doctors to be deployed, for the shattered medical services to be rebuilt – more people die.”- ONECampaign

What we know is that though it’s lethal, the Ebola virus is relatively short-lived as viruses go, and transmittable only through contact with infected bodily fluids.  This means that although it can be spread quickly, once contained, the number of new infections come down quickly as well. Liberia has been the hardest hit country with an estimated 3,000 deaths from the disease, but according to the World Health Organization we are beginning to see the number of cases there decline.  Girls and women have been disproportionately impacted since traditionally they are the caretakers in their communities as Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf explained via video feed to attendees of the ONE Girls and Women AYA Summit several weeks ago.   According to a story in the Associated Press by Jonathan Paye-Layleh on ABC news  today she has set a goal of Liberia being Ebola free by December 25th by doubling their efforts.

World leaders need to commit the resources to get it done. Our best chance to #EndEbola is if the world is #UnitedAgainsEbola. Two organizations working towards that very goal released videos last week to highlight this point.

ONE Campaign encourages us to take action by putting pressure on our government leaders to do so by signing this petition.

You can Find out here if the countries that have made promises to Ebola have delivered to help #ENDEBOLA.

Africa Responds  focuses on how African countries are #UnitedAgainstEbola and how local organizations have been working on the ground since the beginning of the crisis to get help to those who need it.

It is our human nature to care for others, and you can do just that through donations to help get the resources where they need to go, or by using  your voice and signing the petition to let government leaders know you care. What the world can not afford to do is sit by any longer and do nothing. We can #EndEbola when we become #UnitedAgainsEbola. Let’s get it done!

During UN General Assembly week in September I attended a roundtable on the Ebola crisis with ONE Campaign, The Gates Foundation, and Save The Children. In October at the One Girls and Women AYA Summit a discussion with a panel of experts  on Ebola including a physician from the front lines in Liberia accompanied the video address by Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf.

Ava Anderson Non-Toxic Partners With Edesia Global Nutrition Solutions

Ava Anderson Non-Toxic Partners With Edesia Global Nutrition Solutions

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Two Rhode Island companies, founded and run by women, have come together this month to double the opportunity for positive impact.

Ava Anderson and Edesia were both boldly founded in Rhode Island in 2009, when the state was in the midst of the great recession that had enveloped the entire country. Both were founded by women on a mission to bring about change, and as a credit to the power of storytelling in the media, both were inspired by a news story they saw on TV.  For Navyn it was Anderson Cooper reporting on a “miracle” treatment for malnutrition called Plumpy’Nut .  For Ava it was a program about the toxins found in everyday cosmetic products that were dangerous to women’s health.

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Ava Anderson

Unable to find any products on the market truly toxin free Ava set about creating her own line of safe non-toxic beauty, and home care products.

Navyn Salem

Navyn Salem

By establishing the non-profit Edesia in 2009 and producing Plumpy’Nut in her home state, Navyn both provided local jobs, and global nutrition solutions all at once.

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Both companies have grown exponentially since they launched five years ago.

For the month of November each order of Ava Anderson products will provide a packet of Plumpy’Nut to a child in need.

Typically within 7-week course of Plumpy’Nut a child suffering from severe acute malnutrition can be brought back to a healthy weight. Proper nutrition is especially critical in small children whose brains and bodies are growing rapidly, and lack of nutrition can cause a condition called stunting from which they will never reach their full cognitive potential.

This partnership offers a great opportunity to purchase safe, toxin free products for yourself and your loved ones, while knowing that at the same time you will also be contributing towards the treatment of a child’s health. Plus for each order made through this link using the party ID # 4418 4 you will be entered to win a $25.00 Ava Anderson gift certificate! You can help us to #NourishTheFuture with these gifts that give back this month.

Please feel free to share this post and inspire others to shop Ava in November for maximum impact.

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The AYA Summit With ONE Girls & Women

The AYA Summit With ONE Girls & Women

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This week at the Washington D.C. Google headquarters I will be attending ONE’s 2014 AYA Summit .  Co-hosted by ONE Girls & Women and Google the AYA Summit is an exciting opportunity to meet some of the amazing speakers and attendees, as well as catch up with friends and colleagues.  It is always inspiring to be in an environment surrounded by change-makers approaching the world we live in with optimistic problem solving and ideas.

 The word AYA is an African Adinkra symbol from Ghana for fern that represents endurance, resourcefulness and growth. A beautiful symbol for the AYA Summit that will highlight the progress and challenges that girls and women face in developing countries. In the fight to eliminate extreme poverty improving the lives of girls and women is essential.

When girls and women are given the necessary education and tools, they can be change-makers within their families and communities. Through a series of talks, panels, visuals, and demonstrations, the summit will explore what it means to be born female in Africa, and what we, working together with our African partners, can do to make sure that all girls and women reach their potential. The summit will bring together leaders from the non-profit, government, private sector and celebrity arenas.- ONE Girls & Women Read the rest of this entry

How I Grew A Human Published on Mamalode Today For The Nourish Theme Sponsored By ONE Girls & Women

How I Grew A Human Published on Mamalode Today For The Nourish Theme Sponsored By ONE Girls & Women
Photo by Bob Packert

Photo by Bob Packert

These days I’m walking around with a tightness in my chest. The feeling that something is missing that stays with me all the time. A very slight deep underlying melancholy, and I hope every mother gets a chance to feel this way at some point.  It sounds cruel, I know, to wish this on others, but my post on Mamalode today explains why I do.

On my trip to Ethiopia this past summer to report on newborn health with the International Reporting Project, and through the work I do with the local non-profit Edesia that nourishes children around the world, the theme of #Nourish struck a chord with me. Especially at this moment in time when my own baby was going off to school as a teenager for the first time. I realized that as mothers this is truly our ultimate goal, to see our children grow up to be healthy and happy and productive. At the same time this is the most difficult part of motherhood. The letting go.

I can not grow a garden, though lord knows I’ve tried, and each of my houseplants clings tenaciously to life each day, but somehow, someway it seems, I grew a human. And I am amazed.

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Source: Mamalode

I am honored and  thrilled to be published on Mamalode today as part of the #nourish theme sponsored by the ONE Women & Girls campaign. My travels to Ethiopia mentioned in the post were with The International Reporting Project #EthiopiaNewborns New Media Fellowship this past June.

Reading in Bhutan

Reading in Bhutan

I wanted to share this video from READ Global today on International Literacy Day.  Literacy opens up the world in ways those of us who can read take for granted. In rural Bhutan, half of adults are unable to read which prevents them from reading labels, signs, or directions.  The non-profit READ Global is out to change that statistic.