IRC in the News
On a recent monitoring trip to Salt Lake City, I had the pleasure of visiting the East African Refugee Goat Project of Utah. The visit originally scheduled for a Tuesday was postponed to Thursday due to work conflicts.
Africa is changing dramatically – and so are outsiders’ attitudes toward it, with the US finally seeming determined to catch up with China, Europe, and India in their interest in the continent. US President Barack Obama’s recent summit with 40 African heads of state and more than 200 US and African business leaders suggests a new, more confident mood. That is encouraging; but as long as parts of Sub-Saharan Africa continue to struggle with violent conflict, poverty, and corruption, the continent’s economic potential will not be fully realized.
New, worrying information from Sierra Leone suggests that damage from the disease may go far beyond deaths from the Ebola virus itself. Rather, Ebola is claiming more victims by damaging already-weak local health systems and their ability to respond to other medical problems, from malaria to emergency c-sections. The ebola-driven rise in deaths from those other maladies may outpace the deaths from ebola itself.
"It is startling then that these facts about breastfeeding are well established, yet it is progressing the least," said Casie Tesfai, technical nutrition policy advisor for the International Rescue Committee. "Globally, only 39 percent of children under six months of age are exclusively breastfed, and only 20 countries have made any significant progress in the last decade. In Africa, only 15 percent of countries are currently on track to reach the Millennium Development Goals targets on breastfeeding."
A Pine Lake city councilman is demanding to know what the DeKalb County school district is doing to make sure families with small children don’t have to camp out overnight just to get in line to register for school.
When gang members come knocking, Central American households are offered a sinister choice: give us your children or let them stay and be killed. Not surprisingly, many of the region's most desperate families are fleeing their homes in record numbers.