Author: Saiesha

TACOMA, Washington — The Reinforcing Education Accountability in Development (READ) Act was signed into law in 2017 with the aim of promoting basic education initiatives across the world to strengthen education systems, increase access to “safe learning,” assist countries in raising literacy rates, improve the quality of foundational education and leverage education as a tool to spur sustainable economic growth. The READ Act Reauthorization Act of 2022 was introduced in the 117th Congress and passed in the House of Representatives on September 20, 2022, but did not progress in the Senate. On January 24, 2023, Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) and…

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MARIETTA, Georgia — In 2022, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) published a cookbook titled “From Our Table to Yours: Fusion Cuisine.” The book chronicles stories of forcibly displaced people, providing insight into the lives of people forced to start over while sharing recipes from these refugee communities. Using Cooking to Create a Livelihood For refugees, food serves as a way to preserve their home countries and cultures. This is the case for 39-year-old Natasha who sought asylum in Belize with her daughter. The mother and daughter pair forcibly fled El Salvador after they received threats from gang members,…

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SINGAPORE, Singapore — One would be hard-pressed to believe that, in 1988, investing in Nigeria’s economy was a lucrative idea. With a population of 91 million, life expectancy was just 46 years and annual per capita income was, in today’s values, approximately $535. Furthermore, only 22% of the population survived on more than $2 per day, around 50% of the population did not have access to potable water and 63% of the population did not have “access to proper sanitation.” However, where others may have seen a lost cause, Haresh and Sajen Aswani of the Tolaram Group saw tremendous opportunity. Their…

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ST. JOSEPH, Trinidad — An increase in extreme floods in Northern Bangladesh has rendered large portions of its land inhospitable to its primary crops. Fortunately, locals’ attempts at adapting have proven even more successful than anticipated. The introduction of corn crops in Bangladesh is lifting many farmers out of poverty. This introduction has the potential to save the country foreign exchange funds otherwise expended on corn imports. The Flood-Prone North With a massive network of 230 rivers flowing through Bangladesh, 80% of the country is considered a flood plain. In recent years, climate change has been intensifying the incidence and magnitude of…

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ST. JOSEPH, Trinidad — Today, there are roughly 620,000 Māori living in New Zealand, composing about 15% of the total population. While their native language, rich culture and political involvement continue to have a substantial impact on all facets of New Zealand life, the indigenous tribe has historically and disproportionately faced poverty. Consequently, developments in areas like education, business, female empowerment, access to power and journalism have contributed to alleviating Māori poverty. Māori Medium Schools Māori academic achievement has recently increased across New Zealand. The Māori Language Strategy, the government’s ongoing 25-year plan to revitalize Te Reo Māori, the Māori…

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LOS ANGELES, California — On July 8, 2021, President Biden announced that all U.S. military operations in Afghanistan will officially end by August 31, 2021. This announcement formalizes the conclusion of a withdrawal process that has been underway since President Trump signed a peace deal with the Taliban in February 2020. While the U.S. has sustained no casualties since the peace deal was signed, the Afghan National Army (ANA) has lost thousands of men attempting to stop Taliban offensives across the country. The Taliban has seized control over more than 150 districts in the last two months, inciting fear of…

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Redmond, WA — Cambodia is a county in Southeast Asia that borders Thailand to the west and Vietnam to the east. It was a very powerful nation when the Khmer empire reached its peak during the 12th century and temples, such as Angkor Wat, were constructed. However, in 1884, France colonized Cambodia. A series of tragedies marked the subsequent century, notably the Vietnam War, the Japanese occupation and the genocide perpetrated by the Khmer Rouge, which lasted from 1975 until 1979. The Cambodian genocide significantly impacted education in Cambodia and the country is trying to recover from that loss today.…

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SEATTLE, Washington — The COVID-19 pandemic has posed unique and unprecedented challenges for women and girls. It has exposed the inherent gender inequalities of nearly every system in every part of the world, including social services, health, nutrition, education and finances. Policy initiatives are imperative to curtailing these trends and easing mental health concerns for women and girls during the pandemic and beyond. Women’s mental health during COVID-19 necessitates prioritization. Globally, one of the most striking disparities existing is in mental health. The COVID-19 pandemic surged mental health concerns and has disproportionately impacted women and girls. Policy decisions and health…

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TACOMA, Washington — If you look up Annie Lennox, you’ll find a long list of well-known songs that she has either written, sung or both. Another long list associated with Lennox is the charities with which she has been involved. Lennox has supported 75 charities, many of which address the HIV/AIDS pandemic. In fact, she is a UNAIDS Goodwill Ambassador as well as an HIV Ambassador for London. Lennox even started her own charity, the SING Campaign. Through various humanitarian efforts, Lennox helps global AIDS relief. SING Campaign It is clear that Annie Lennox helps global AIDS relief through numerous…

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SEATTLE, Washington — The Romani are a minority ethnic group with about 12 million people worldwide. Around 10 million of them reside in Europe. Romani people have consistently experienced social exclusion and oppression throughout their history. Currently, with the COVID-19 pandemic, it is no different. The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted Romani communities in several ways. 4 Ways COVID-19 Impacts Romani People Romani living conditions create a heightened risk of contracting COVID-19. About 80% of Romani in Europe reside in overcrowded and densely populated areas, which makes effective social distancing a challenge. Moreover, adequate sanitation and hygiene pose difficulties as two-thirds…

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