WBEZ | Global Activism http://www.wbez.org/series/global-activism Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en Global Activism: 'The Mustard Seed' Fair Trade shop is transforming lives http://www.wbez.org/series/global-activism/global-activism-mustard-seed-fair-trade-shop-transforming-lives-110683 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/GA Mustard Seed.jpg" alt="" /><p><p dir="ltr" id="docs-internal-guid-7b5392bd-f92b-6cd4-778d-f28929d6d597">Judy Kohl grew up in a missionary family in Belgian Congo. When the Belgians were overthrown, her family was forced to flee to Kenya, where she spent much of her childhood. Those times developed Judy&rsquo;s sense of social justice and giving back. She eventually created The Mustard Seed, a fair trade shop in Lake Forest, IL. They say they&rsquo;re &ldquo;committed to donating its profits to organizations that help empower women and children,&rdquo; especially those stricken with HIV/AIDS. Judy will tell us about the importance of fair trade and how witnessing history as a child changed her life.<iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/164166396&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false" width="100%"></iframe></p><p><em>Judy tells us about her life&#39;s journey, which had an extraordinary beginning:</em></p><p>&quot;Just 8 months old when I arrived in the Belgian Congo, I had no idea the journey my life would take over the next five decades. As the daughter of missionaries to Africa, cross-cultural thinking became part of my DNA as I experienced from a young age what it was to live in a global context. Growing up in this environment, my parents and other missionaries modeled selfless love as they cared for those around them. As we fled the Congo in 1964 during the uprising that led to independence, it was with mixed emotions. We had no choice but to leave because of the advancing Rebels, but our hearts remained with those who had become like family. Relationships were a high value within our family culture.</p><p>Fast forward to the present - I&rsquo;m still passionate about giving back to those less fortunate. Though I live on the North Shore, decisions I make on how I spend my time and my money can literally change the lives of a community halfway across the world. Serving with other volunteers at The Mustard Seed - A Fair Trade Shop, we are committed to partnering with cooperatives and artisans in developing countries to provide a market for their creations while paying them a fair price. We also donate our profits to organizations that help empower women and children both domestically and internationally. Each of these ways enable others to make a sustainable living and emerge from poverty. It is still all about relationships. By having a world view, we can continue to change the lives of people we will never even meet - and that is the whole point.&quot;</p></p> Thu, 21 Aug 2014 09:39:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/series/global-activism/global-activism-mustard-seed-fair-trade-shop-transforming-lives-110683 Global Activism: Global Emergency Care Collaborative expanding in Africa and into Asia http://www.wbez.org/series/global-activism/global-activism-global-emergency-care-collaborative-expanding-africa-and-asia <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/ga-GECC.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>We <a href="http://www.wbez.org/episode-segments/global-activism-local-physician-brings-emergency-care-ugandan-hospital">last spoke</a> with Global Activist, Stacey Chamberlain, in 2010. She is a Chicago-based emergency room physician who decided to go to Uganda to train nurses and physicians and provide access to quality healthcare. And she co-founded the Global Emergency Care Collaborative <a href="http://www.google.com/url?q=http%3A%2F%2Fglobalemergencycare.org%2F&amp;sa=D&amp;sntz=1&amp;usg=AFQjCNF2zDSHcq351hxYredY9OrtN6Mqiw">(GECC)</a> to aid people who die unnecessarily from trauma, injuries and illnesses that are easily treatable in the United States. For our <em><a href="http://www.wbez.org/series/global-activism">Global Activism</a></em> series, Stacey is back to update us on how the work of GECC has expanded into Kenya and even into Cambodia.<iframe frameborder="no" height="450" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/163159037&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;visual=true" width="100%"></iframe></p><p><strong>From Stacey Chamberlain:</strong></p><p>&quot;Since I came on the show in April 2010, here&#39;s what GECC has been up to: We have continued our work in developing emergency care in resource-limited settings both in Uganda where we started our pilot project, and we&#39;re expanding our programming with projects in Kenya and Cambodia. We have continued the train-the-trainer program in Uganda, training Emergency Care Practitioners to be emergency providers; we have completed training courses for three classes of ECPs and started our fourth training class in January 2014.&nbsp; We&#39;re partnering with a medical training college in Kenya to start a training program there training Clinical Officers as emergency specialists, and we&#39;re collaborating with physicians at a pediatric hospital in Cambodia to teach emergency ultrasound.&nbsp; We have been monitoring outcomes of patients treated by our ECPs and found improved mortality rates from all of the top causes.&rdquo;</p></p> Thu, 14 Aug 2014 08:52:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/series/global-activism/global-activism-global-emergency-care-collaborative-expanding-africa-and-asia Global Activism: Somali Women Association of Illinois helping refugees http://www.wbez.org/series/global-activism/global-activism-somali-women-association-illinois-helping-refugees-110614 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/ga-nana profile_0.jpg" alt="" /><p><p dir="ltr" id="docs-internal-guid-68f46e64-b189-5f5b-2f0a-bc3933c46009">Nana Ahmed grew up as a Somali refugee in Yemen. When she came to America, Nana wanted to give back by helping refugees like herself. She, along with seven other Chicago women, formed <a href="https://www.facebook.com/SWAI2014">Somali Women Association of Illinois</a> (SWAI). They provide education and housing assistance, job training and health access to try and help refugee women and their families settle into their new lives. Nana will share her own experience and how it&rsquo;s helped dozens of refugees.</p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="450" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/162151706&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;visual=true" width="100%"></iframe></p></p> Thu, 07 Aug 2014 12:27:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/series/global-activism/global-activism-somali-women-association-illinois-helping-refugees-110614 Global Activism: New Life for Haiti http://www.wbez.org/series/global-activism/global-activism-new-life-haiti-110615 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/GA-New Life.JPG" alt="" /><p><p dir="ltr" id="docs-internal-guid-4cb005fa-b219-9595-3e0c-f7716ab75183">We first met Global Activist, Fran Leeman, in 2009. He&rsquo;s Lead Pastor of Life Spring Church in Plainfield, Illinois. Leeman founded <a href="http://An Undernourished mother and newborn visit a New Life for Haiti Clinic">New Life for Haiti (NLH)</a> in 2005. They do sustainability and development work in a river valley in the country. An NLH team of adult leaders and teens just returned from Haiti. While there, they hiked to a remote mountain village called Plaine Marie to paint a school they built there last year. Pastor Leeman, NLH Youth Pastor, Scott Derengowski and teenager, Katy Deenihan, will us more about their trip.</p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="450" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/161142347&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;visual=true" width="100%"></iframe></p></p> Thu, 31 Jul 2014 09:12:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/series/global-activism/global-activism-new-life-haiti-110615 Global Activism: Keeping kids in school in India http://www.wbez.org/series/global-activism/global-activism-keeping-kids-school-india-110625 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/ga-pratham.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>According to UNICEF, in India, more than 70 percent of children drop out before finishing school. <a href="http://www.prathamusa.org">Pratham USA</a>, co-founded by Yogi Patel, is dedicated to youth education, literacy and vocational training in India and it reports that over half of India&rsquo;s children in the 5th grade can&rsquo;t read at a 2nd grade level. We&#39;ll talk with Raj Rajaram, president of Pratham USA, about the work they&#39;re doing to try to improve education and opportunity for children in India.</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p><strong>Pratham USA Chicago Walk-a-thon:</strong></p><p><strong>Walk or Run For Literacy</strong></p><p><strong>Sunday, August 17, 2014, 9:00 AM</strong></p><p><strong>Harms Wood Forest Preserve (Grove 3), Morton Grove, IL</strong></p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="450" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/160137303&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;visual=true" width="100%"></iframe></p></p> Thu, 24 Jul 2014 09:19:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/series/global-activism/global-activism-keeping-kids-school-india-110625 Global Activism: 'ConTextos' aiding children in Central America through literacy education http://www.wbez.org/series/global-activism/global-activism-contextos-aiding-children-central-america-through-literacy <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/GA-debra_gittler.jpg" alt="" /><p><p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-5ec3e45c-419f-6c53-a54b-a65dded641a7">While Central American children flood into the U.S. to escape crime &amp; poverty, Chicagoan Debra Gittler works to create conditions on-the-ground through literacy education, opportunity &amp; advocacy, that she hopes will help these children thrive and keep them in their home countries. Debra moved to Central America to start <a href="http://contextos.org/">ConTextos</a>. The group says &ldquo;[We do] more than just develop the mechanical skills of sounding out words. We encourage kids to think deeply, to be curious, and to question their environment.&rdquo; For <em><a href="http://www.wbez.org/series/global-activism">Global Activism</a></em>, Gittler tells us how her work is spreading across Central America.</span></p><p dir="ltr" id="docs-internal-guid-5ec3e45c-4188-13cc-6742-dee95fbd88c5"><iframe frameborder="no" height="450" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/159145115&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;visual=true" width="100%"></iframe></p><p>Just the other day, I was at a school in Usulutan, one of the areas of El Salvador that has had an explosion of violence post the gang truce. I sat with Manuel, a first grader, who told me: &quot;I have lots of family in the United States,&quot; he explained. &quot;Cousins and aunts and uncles. But I want to stay here in El Salvador. I like my school.&quot;</p><p>When we asked Debra to tell us about the importance of her work, she wrote:</p><p style="margin-left:1.0in;">I want to emphasize the relevance of our work in Central America, especially given the refugee kids at the border. To emphasize that the reality is, these kids have access to schools, but no education; ConTextos changes that. We are growing throughout the region and looking for greater support in our hometown here in Chicago. Those kids at the border... those are the same kids that we serve.</p><p style="margin-left:1.0in;">Just the other day, I was at a school in Usulutan, one of the areas of El Salvador that has had an explosion of violence post the gang truce. I sat with Manuel, a first grader, who told me: &quot;I have lots of family in the United States,&quot; he explained. &quot;Cousins and aunts and uncles. But I want to stay here in El Salvador. I like my school.&quot;</p><p style="margin-left:1.0in;">Before ConTextos, Manuel had no books and his entire experience was copy and dictation. He went to school four hours a day. Now, his school is open to him all day long, he has access to books and other materials, and he has real conversations in his classroom. We read a book called &quot;Where are the Giants&quot; about hidden magic in the world. Manuel says to me (I&#39;m translating): &quot;You know--and this isn&#39;t in the news, but it&#39;s true-- I&#39;ve heard that there are fairies in Mexico...&quot;</p><p style="margin-left:1.0in;">I asked his teacher about Manuel. She said that before, she used to scold him for his imagination. Now she encourages it. Her students are encouraged to think and imagine and explore. Classroom attendance is up.</p><p style="margin-left:1.0in;">And this school is in the midst of gang territory. MS 18 is scribbled on the walls of the school. Manuel&#39;s photo is below.</p><p style="margin-left:1.0in;">It&#39;s important to realize that even though we are a literacy organization-- and the only org in the region with the goal and implementation in multiple countries; whereas Africa and Asia have multiple orgs addressing the lack of resources and training across countries, Central Am/ Latin Am have NONE-- we go far beyond just teaching reading.</p><p style="margin-left:1.0in;">At one of our schools--an area of extreme poverty where most live as subsistence farmers-- the school ran out of space for their school garden. &quot;Why can&#39;t we plant on the roof?&quot; asked one of the 5th graders. At first, the teacher balked that it was a ridiculous idea. Now they are growing basil and mint on their roof. The teacher explained: &quot;by changing how we teach-- asking questions, encouraging the kids to question-- we&#39;ve seen changes in how they approach life.&quot; These kids live in areas with plenty of problems. With ConTextos&#39; intervention, they&#39;re encouraged to think about those problems.</p><p style="margin-left:1.0in;">That school was one of our first schools. There&#39;s now 13 schools in their network. Kids read at a &quot;1st world&quot; level. The Ministry uses the schools as models for teacher development.</p><p>&nbsp;</p></p> Thu, 17 Jul 2014 09:14:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/series/global-activism/global-activism-contextos-aiding-children-central-america-through-literacy Global Activism: 'Worldview Education and Care' aiding children in Tanzania and across Africa http://www.wbez.org/series/global-activism/global-activism-worldview-education-and-care-aiding-children-tanzania-and <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/GA-Worldview.jpg" alt="" /><p><p><span id="docs-internal-guid-e6e5cb31-4504-0dc8-eebe-ac45629e8353">Chicagoans, Ann Avery, and her husband Robert, founded <a href="http://www.worldvieweducationandcare.org/">Worldview Education and Care</a> after witnessing the plight of young people in the Meru district of northern Tanzania. Among many services, the group helps Tanzanians by providing scholarships for child and adult education, including living expenses and medical care. They also run a girls&#39; empowerment program to help struggling and single mothers attend school as well support an <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MQPEUo8264w&amp;feature=youtu.be">orphanage</a>. For our </span>Global Activism series, Ann and group supporter, Susie Rheault, will talk about their work and a program to foster HIV/AIDS awareness through sports.</p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="450" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/158146754&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;visual=true" width="100%"></iframe></p></p> Thu, 10 Jul 2014 08:49:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/series/global-activism/global-activism-worldview-education-and-care-aiding-children-tanzania-and Global Activism: Public policy graduate creates 'Basic Transfer', for a different approach to solving global poverty http://www.wbez.org/series/global-activism/global-activism-public-policy-graduate-creates-basic-transfer-different <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/GAS-BAsic Transfer India.jpg" alt="" /><p><p dir="ltr" id="docs-internal-guid-d06db46c-ba05-4a74-b0e7-5d639a717861">After graduating from the University of Chicago&rsquo;s <a href="http://harrisschool.uchicago.edu/">Harris School</a> of Public Policy, Tricia Martinez came to believe that, &ldquo;policy solutions are not driven by potential impact for the individual or the ability to influence large-scale change, rather they are driven by political agendas.&rdquo; She wanted to take a different approach to solving some of the world&rsquo;s biggest humanitarian problems. &nbsp;For <a href="http://www.wbez.org/series/global-activism">Global Activism</a>, Martinez will tell us about her new collaborative project called &ldquo;<a href="http://www.basictransfer.com/">Basic Transfer</a>&rdquo;. It&rsquo;s a &ldquo;hybrid social venture with a mission to lift women around the world out of poverty through cash transfers.&rdquo;<iframe frameborder="no" height="450" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/155117134&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;visual=true" width="100%"></iframe></p><p>Tricia wants to create a revolution in fighting poverty through technology:</p><p style="margin-left:1.0in;">&quot;I am a social innovator and builder with a policy lens. Solving problems is what really excites me and I have found that the most critical part of addressing societal challenges is being able to connect and empathize with individuals unlike yourself. However, with a background in public policy, I see that many policy solutions are not driven by potential impact for the individual or the ability to influence large-scale change, rather they are driven by political agendas.</p><p style="margin-left:1.0in;">There is definitely a disconnect between the academic world conducting advantageous research and discovering new ways to solve problems and the real world solutions we actually implement. This is why I founded Basic Transfer. I wanted to take the research that my training was founded on and take it to scale. Poverty has always been the most fascinating phenomenon to me. The fact that 1.3 billion people live off of less than $1.25 a day and 70% of these people are women in the year 2014 is unacceptable, but society can still not figure out how to alleviate it at scale or eliminate it. Cash transfers have the ability to change the poverty landscape completely, but at the end of the day there is a stigma with handing cash to a poor person and giving them the choice on how to live their life. Basic Transfer will change that through our peer-to-peer giving platform, transparent model, and impact metrics showing donors where exactly there money is going and how $25 can create significant impact.</p><p style="margin-left:1.0in;">We are a poverty alleviation solution driven by research and results and as a social venture we have the ability to innovate and scale without being held back by agendas or institutional constraints. Unconditional cash transfers can lift millions of people out of poverty; it is just about breaking the traditional model and that is exactly what Basic Transfer is going to do.&quot;</p></p> Thu, 19 Jun 2014 08:02:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/series/global-activism/global-activism-public-policy-graduate-creates-basic-transfer-different Global Activism: Chicago area drummer's music helps Guinean villagers http://www.wbez.org/series/global-activism/global-activism-chicago-area-drummers-music-helps-guinean-villagers-110326 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/GA-Guinea Drummers.jpg" alt="" /><p><p><span id="docs-internal-guid-6eb7abc8-8c7c-9394-b229-ecefcc0e0972">Helen Bond was an IT Project Manager. On the side she enjoyed playing the djembe, a Guinean drum. Being part of Chicago&rsquo;s &ldquo;West African Drumming scene&rdquo; inspired her to quit Corporate America. Helen and drumming partner, Amy Lutz, for years have gone to Guinea to learn from Drum Masters. after many trips, they discovered the enormous needs of the people there. Helen and Amy will tell us how drumming transformed their lives and the lives of people in Guinea&rsquo;s Hamana region. We&rsquo;ll also speak with Guinean Drum Master, Fode Camara. He&rsquo;s in Chicago to teach djembe drumming.</span></p><p><strong>Helen told us how Motherland Rhythm Community&rsquo;s Benkadi Project was born:</strong></p><p><em>In December 2001, I traveled to Guinea. Amy Lusk traveled to Guinea in January 2002. After my trip, I met with Amy to help her prepare for her trip. When Amy returned we met again to discuss our experiences. </em></p><p><em>We traveled to Guinea, West Africa to study traditional hand drumming. We discovered the great joy of playing music in community. We also saw the deep suffering of the Guinean people due to lack of economic development, poverty, lack of educational opportunity and access to clean water and health services. When we returned to the United States, we began talking about life in Guinea at my drumming events and with our friends and families. Eventually, we co-founded the Benkadi Project to respond to these challenges. Benkadi means &ldquo;To live together is very good.&rdquo; </em></p><p><em>Today, the Benkadi Project is working to provide clean water to people in Guinea, West Africa, one of the poorest countries in the world. In Guinea, people often drink from polluted streams and contaminated wells, causing serious and recurring illness and even death from cholera, dysentery, typhoid and E. Coli bacteria. </em></p><p><em>Something as simple as clean drinking water can literally save lives in Guinea. Our organization builds and delivers innovative biosand water filters to homes in Guinea to address this problem. We employ community members to construct the filters and teach residents how to use them. </em></p><p><em>Last year we delivered 64 filters to families near Conakry, Guinea. As a result, 640 individuals now have access to clean water. People who used the filters reported a dramatic reduction in illness and improved health and well-being. Each filter proves clean water to 10 people for 10 years, at a cost of just $300 per filter or $30 per person.</em></p><p><em>We do our work person to person, hand to hand, heart to heart. We have:</em></p><ul><li><em><strong>Food, medicine, school, repaired wells </strong>Provided food, agricultural assistance and medicine, constructed a school and repaired wells in remote villages.</em></li></ul><ul><li><em><strong>Clean water</strong> In the last two years, we have developed a Clean Water Initiative in Guinea focusing on water filter systems for individual households.&nbsp;</em></li></ul><ul><li><em><strong>Biosand Filters </strong>These filters have already changed the lives of 600+ hundreds of people in Guinea.</em></li></ul><ul><li><em><strong>Demand is great</strong> - we&rsquo;re ready to scale our project out and ultimately hope to travel to villages to delivery the filters.</em></li></ul><ul><li><em>We&rsquo;re not a big operation, we&rsquo;re a <strong>conduit for friendship, resources and for collective efforts</strong> to create a more humanistic world. Together, we&rsquo;ve seen the <strong>power of individuals</strong> to make change.</em></li></ul></p> Thu, 12 Jun 2014 09:48:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/series/global-activism/global-activism-chicago-area-drummers-music-helps-guinean-villagers-110326 Global Activism: Helping the people and ecosystem of Guatemala's cloud forests http://www.wbez.org/series/global-activism/global-activism-helping-people-and-ecosystem-guatemalas-cloud-forests-110287 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/cloud forest_0.jpg" alt="" /><p><div><a href="http://www.cloudforestconservation.org/">Community Cloud Forest Conservation</a> (CCFC) works to alleviate poverty and protect Guatemala&rsquo;s tropical cloud forests. They support projects that include reforestation, agricultural biodiversity, education and bird monitoring. CCFC also teamed up with local bird conservationists like <a href="http://chicagoregion.audubon.org/">Audobon Chicago Region</a>, to protect the winter homes of birds that migrate between Guatemala and Chicago. For our Global Activism segment, Founder and director Rob Cahill gives us an update on what he calls &ldquo;the great progress&rdquo; his group has made in the last few months.</div><iframe width="100%" height="450" scrolling="no" frameborder="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/152998102&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;visual=true"></iframe></p> Thu, 05 Jun 2014 11:01:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/series/global-activism/global-activism-helping-people-and-ecosystem-guatemalas-cloud-forests-110287