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Archive for the ‘Foreign Aid’ Category

By: Stephanie Martinez

Last summer I travelled to Europe for the first time and spent my time in Italy. I had created an image of a beautiful, seemingly perfect country in my mind because of stories heard through friends, or as seen on movies and television. Indeed, the landscape and the architecture surpassed my expectations, but the many migrants I saw begging or sleeping under crippling buildings took me by surprise. I had heard about the growing humanitarian crisis in Europe but seeing it firsthand helped me understand the concerns as highlighted in the news. I have visited Developing countries such as El Salvador, Nicaragua, and Guatemala in the past but had not encountered these same circumstances there. It was alarming to see how much more attention was given to ancient monuments and not the present existence of migrants who were suffering. I stayed in a quiet street outside of downtown Rome and only ten minutes away, there were migrants living in what can only be described as slums. At night, tents or cardboard materials were used as beds just outside the train station.

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By: Madison Lee

We have now entered year two of the Trump Administration and we continue to see where the President’s values and priorities lie. On February 12, 2018 President Trump’s White House released their second budget proposal, this time for the 2019 fiscal year 6. As seen in the 2018 budget proposal, the President continues to strive for greater defense and border control spending while slashing the budgets of U.S. foreign aid programs 6. It is very clear from the proposed budget that the President is unconcerned about the programs and organizations that rely on US money to continue their work in some of the most undeveloped and under-resourced places in the world. HIV/AIDS is an area of work that would be highly affected by the proposed cuts and over 40 organizations, including Partners in Health and the ONE Campaign, have spoken out about the negative effects the cuts would have 1,4.

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By: Morgan Duffney

Today, when we watch cable news and see the banner ‘Crisis in Pakistan’ shoot across the television screen, a few thoughts and fears come to mind: terrorism, political instability, and loosely controlled nuclear weapons. What no one ever thinks about is the public health disaster currently looming over the country, which is already in a fragile state. What never appears on a breaking news banner on Fox News or CNN, but does appear on the front pages of Pakistan Today is that in Pakistan, an estimated . The inability to treat contaminated water, supply its citizens with this basic necessity to live, and stem the tide of human suffering is not only a problem faced by the Pakistani government, but is currently a global public health crisis.

Pakistan is just one country out of the many throughout the world currently struggling to relieve the suffering of their people and resolve this public health emergency. To put this crisis into a global perspective, as of 2014, the United Nations estimated that 2.5 billion people receive their drinking water from sources without improved sanitation, with roughly two million tons of sewage and other pollutants entering the world’s water system each day. Without an adequate response and action on the part of public health organizations throughout the world, the future looks quite bleak; as the World Health Organization (WHO) now predicts that by 2025 half of the world’s population will live in “water-stressed areas” (2017).

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By Heba Ijaz

Since Nigeria was declared endemic-free last year, Pakistan has become one of two remaining countries where polio is still an endemic viral infection.

Poliomyelitis is a highly infectious disease caused by the poliovirus that primarily affects children. The virus spreads mainly through the fecal-oral route, although transmission through oral and nasal secretions can also occur. It resides mainly in the throat and intestines, and in certain cases, can enter the bloodstream to invade the brain and spinal cord, leading to paralysis. Contaminated water and food sources along with poor personal hygiene are significant contributors to polio transmission. Two types of vaccines are available today: Oral Polio Vaccine (OPV) is a live attenuated version and Intravenous Polio Vaccine (IPV) is an inactivated version. (more…)

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-By Selin Thomas

For more than two years, the Syrian conflict has been intensely growing in historic scale and scope, with the United Nations estimating more than 100,000 dead and millions displaced. In the last two weeks, the U.N. Security Council has been urged to act on humanitarian aid to Syria because the only achievement to come out of peace talks has been a cease fire in Homs, leaving many aid workers still risking their lives daily. Today, more than two million have fled the country, an estimated 4.25 million have been displaced within the country. (more…)

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-By Nina Misra

In mid-December 2013, violence erupted in South Sudan, the world’s youngest country. The president, Salva Kiir, accused his former vice-president Riek Machar of planning to upstage the presidency. Kiir had eleven people associated with this planned coup arrested. Fighting first started in the capital, Juba, amongst Presidential guards. This conflict between Kiir and Machar turned into a war between ethnic groups. Kiir is somewhat followed by the Dinka people, while Machar is fully supported by the Nuer.  Machar says that “the conflict is not yet over”, and refuses to stop fighting until the eleven politicians are released from detention.  Machar says, “these are events of war”- events that include “extrajudicial killings, sexual violence, and massacres committed by both sides”. The death toll is unknown, and the violence unspeakable. The effects of the fighting are felt by all the citizens of South Sudan, even those who are not directly in the line of fire.  (more…)

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An earlier posting had an incorrect link to the video:  here is the correct link. Sorry!

http://www.nytimes.com/video/2013/01/22/opinion/100000002020130/gospel-of-intolerance.html

From the NY Times: “The filmmaker Roger Ross Williams reveals how money donated by American evangelicals helps to finance a violent antigay movement in Uganda.”

This video by the NY Times follows the work of Rev. Kapya Kaoma, who studied theology at BU, in tracking the impact of US religious conservatives instigating the anti-gay legislation and movement against the LGBT population of Uganda. It’s a very well produced video which raises a lot of troubling questions. Rev. Kaoma does an excellent job of examining the motives behind these groups. They seem unaware – or perhaps aware but untroubled – about the terrible impact their activities are having on a persecuted minority group in Uganda. This video deserves a wider audience, so I post the link to it here. What do you think? comments welcome (but they will be moderated).

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