Author: Mary Crowley

Mary writes for The Borgen Project from Shortsville, NY. She has a degree in Medical Journalism and Mary's other academic interests have gravitated toward pathophysiology, local social issues, and creative fiction. Mary is currently working on a collection of short stories and vignettes for publication. Each piece tells the story of a woman working through pain or injustice that is uniquely suffered by women.

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Before passing the short-term 2017 fiscal year budget, President Trump proposed a 28 percent cut to the State Department. Understanding the grave impact of this cut on the International Affairs Budget, including USAID, 43 senators supporting foreign aid signed a letter summarizing its importance. This letter was addressed to ranking members of the Senate Budget Committee and Appropriations Committee. The letter explains how the International Affairs funding helps stabilize the world and secure the U.S. While military forces are needed to win on the battlefield, many acknowledge that lack of opportunity, insecurity and hopelessness can enable terrorism…

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SEATTLE — LaRon Nelson, an assistant professor at the University of Rochester Medical Center and a global leader in research on HIV/AIDS, hopes to help solve the crisis of HIV in sub-Saharan Africa. Nelson was recently appointed as a member of the Adolescent HIV Prevention and Treatment Implementation Science Alliance (AHISA), which held its first meeting on May 3, 2017. AHISA is an endeavor of the National Institute of Health. The alliance’s aim is to take what is working in the HIV epidemic, scale it up in a cost-effective manner and help countries in sub-Saharan Africa with the logistics of…

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SEATTLE — More than 300 million people suffer from depression globally, and it is the leading cause of disability. Most people who suffer mental illness (including depression) live in poverty, have poor health and are subjected to abuse. They often do not have the same status in their communities due to the stigma associated with the disease and have reduced access to civil rights, social participation, education and healthcare. Depression in developing countries is a great issue. Most countries do not provide enough in mental healthcare access and funding. In more developed nations, five percent of the government health budget…

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SEATTLE — The diseases afflicting developing countries are typically thought to be communicable (such as HIV and tuberculosis). While these are concerning, the United Nations (U.N.) and the World Health Organization (WHO) recognize that non-communicable diseases have an alarming prevalence in low to middle-income countries. Indeed, they are the leading causes of death worldwide and are seen at greater rates in developing countries. The most concerning non-communicable diseases are cardiovascular disease, diabetes, chronic pulmonary obstructive diseases and cancer. The WHO believes that by 2020, 80 percent of disease will be non-communicable, causing seven out of 10 deaths in developing nations,…

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SEATTLE — The 21st century has been defined by terrorism, and the past few years have seen an intense focus on the Islamic State (IS). The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) is one among many organizations attempting to understand terrorism as a global force. The agency is studying why extremist violence flourishes in unstable nations. USAID fights terrorism with this knowledge. The counter-terrorism community generally believes that a lack of resources and a weak economy can lead people to terrorism, however, the motivations are much further nuanced. One environment that increases terrorism’s appeal to local populations is when groups…

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SEATTLE — April 25, 2017, marked World Malaria Day, the World Health Organization (WHO) program aimed at eradicating malaria. Malaria is a parasitic disease that is transmitted to humans through mosquitos. It is persistent in all six populated continents. Although, people who are impoverished are more often afflicted with the disease because their countries tend to have fewer healthcare resources and more civil unrest. World Malaria Day began in 2007 as a means to bring attention to the epidemic and work towards ending it. The goal is to raise awareness for more funding and research and increase political commitment and…

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WASHINGTON, D.C. — Senator Bob Corker (R-TN), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, recently visited a Ugandan refugee camp where many have escaped famine and conflict in South Sudan. In the past, Corker proposed reform for the U.S. food aid system, which provides famine relief. In light of current humanitarian crises, Corker is presenting the argument for food aid reform to the Foreign Aid Relations Committee once again. Senator Corker believes that with simple reforms to the USAID food aid system, the U.S. could feed more people without spending any more tax dollars. Here are five reasons why Americans…

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WASHINGTON, D.C. — President Trump recently announced his budget proposal, with the goal being to increase American security in the world. To do so, he wishes to increase funding for defense, Homeland Security and the National Nuclear Security Administration. Meanwhile, Trump intends to cut the State Department budget by 28 percent. The State Department (run by the Secretary of State) funds the U.S. Agency for International Development, which helps fight global poverty, as well as increase global healthcare, education and human rights. With this in mind, it is worth exploring what former secretaries of state think about foreign aid. The…

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PYONGYANG — The Trump Administration recently increased North Korean sanctions, punishing a company and 11 individuals for their ties to the country’s weapons program. The 12 affected can no longer have business dealings with the U.S. The goal of these sanctions is to cripple North Korea’s development of nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles. Past U.S. presidents have enacted similar sanctions on businesses and people, as have the United Nations, South Korea, Japan and the European Union. These sanctions include embargos, ending business ties, forbidding travelers from North Korea and reducing the transfer of money into North Korea. The intent is…

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SEATTLE — Most can surmise the links between poverty and health; but are there connections between pollution, poverty and health? Yes. Some are rather clear: pollution harms health and clean energy costs money. Some connections are more complicated, yet as critical. As of March 2014, only three in 10 Africans had electricity. The sparse customer base can make electricity expensive for the few that do have it. The fact that it is powered by imported fossil fuels increases the price, as can the lack of maintenance that the electricity generators typically endure. Since electricity is expensive, impoverished governments look for…

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