Posts Tagged united nations

Playing Around With MDGs!

November 2nd, 2010

The United Nations has a new interactive game on its website for users to actively learn about Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). Try it out, and get others to join in on the fun! You can play as a single player or as a group.

Reading List 9/22/2010

September 22nd, 2010

Our Millennium Development Goals (MDGs)-themed reading lists continues! Today were reading about Koreas contribution to saving lives by 2015, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon continues to push for aid for impoverished countries at the MDG Summit, Iran being spotlighted at the MDG Summit, and a discussion of obstacles that may be faced in achieving the MDGs.

GAVI Alliance welcomes Korean contribution, GAVI Alliance UN: Rich must not cut aid to poor to balance budget, Reuters U.N. foresees dramatic cuts in poverty, Mary Beth Sheridan, The Washington Post Iran under spotlight at UN summit, Al Jazeera Unexpected Obstacles to Achieving the Millennium Development Goals, Vinod Thomas, The Huffington Post

Stand Up Against Poverty- DC Style

September 17th, 2010

Today a group of us from the office ventured out to the Stand Up Against Poverty event in Farragut Square!

Here is a  description of the Stand Up Against Poverty Movement from the United Nations:

September 17th -19th, 2010: Three days of mobilization enabling all constituencies and anyone wanting to be a part of the mobilization to organize and participate in a wide range of events, relevant actions and initiatives to show their support for the achievement of the MDGs and have their voices heard articulating their demands for delegations attending the Summit.  

Over this three day period, we are encouraging people and their organisations to continue to incorporate the Stand UP moment and pledge reading into their events and where relevant and possible to invite media to cover their events and initiatives. The Stand Up pledge will be adapted this year in line with the new timing to specifically reference the MDG Review Summit. As always, these pledges need to be adapted to incorporate relevant messaging for each participating organization or group.

Read more: Stand Up Against Poverty- DC Style

Dont Drop the Ball on Aid

July 6th, 2010

By: Ian Sullivan

This summer, weve had the pleasure of enjoying a nail-biting World Cup full of suspense, thrills, and triumphs. The World Cup has also been a mechanism that has united fans within countries and continents, resulting in an unwavering passion for one team, and ultimately one sport -- football.

We wanted to turn all of that into something genuinely world changing. We wanted to connect with football fans around the world and give them the chance to express themselves in a meaningful way. So, we decided to set up a massive game of keepy-uppy and to tell our leaders Dont Drop the Ball on Aid. Its time to kick off. Grab a football, a camera and film yourself keeping the ball up. Whether you can do one, two or twenty, your keepy-uppys will form part of an amazing video chain, linking people worldwide who care enough to kick off and fight poverty.

Just months after the World Cup finishes in South Africa, the UNs Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) conference kicks off in New York and well be showing your videos to the world leaders that attend. The MDGs have the power to revolutionize peoples lives in poor countries. But rich countries are failing to provide vitally-needed aid money to turn the goals into reality, and this conference -- combined with your keepy-uppys -- can kickstart that vital progress.

Spent well and targeted effectively, foreign aid money is a massive force for good. It means kids in schools. Trained nurses. Clean water. It means whole communities -- even whole countries -- facing the future with hope, not fear. But in 2009, nearly half of the worlds richest countries actually cut the amount they spent on aid. And it means that millions of people are being denied a new start. But together, we can make change happen, and -- with the Millennium Development Goals conference planned for September -- this is the year to get it done. So dont just watch the action in South Africa, grab a ball and get yourself filmed. A lot of very powerful people will get a timely reminder to keep their promises on delivering aid money -- as well as getting a chance to check out your beautiful ball skills.

Find out more and upload a video!


Ian Sullivan is the Global Digital Campaigner for Oxfam.

Neglected Tropical Diseases and the Quest for Social Justice

February 19th, 2010

Tomorrow, February 20th, 2010, marks the second annual World Day of Social Justice. This event was created in 2007 to “consolidate further the efforts of the international community in poverty eradication and in promoting full employment and decent work, gender equality and access to social well-being and justice for all.” There are many ways to work towards those goals, but one of the most effective, and cost effective, is the elimination of neglected tropical diseases (NTDs).

 To eradicate poverty and promote full employment, NTD treatment is vital in the developing world. If a person is suffering from lymphatic filariasis and has severely swollen limbs to the point of being unable to work, or have contracted trachoma or onchocerciasis and gone blind, it hinders their ability to earn a living. Infections from the soil-transmitted helminth family of parasites cause anemia and nutrient deficiencies in children, stunting their physical and mental development. One of these parasites, roundworm, can decrease the future earnings potential of an infected child by 43%. However, deworming not only prevents the developmental disabilities created by infection, but also has been found to decrease school absenteeism by 25%. If future generations are to break free of the vicious cycle of poverty and unemployment, then NTD treatment must be included in any efforts.

Photo courtesy of Lindsay Wheeler

Photo courtesy of Lindsay Wheeler

 NTDs also play heavily into issues of gender equality, as they tend to disproportionately affect women. In areas of great gender inequality, the social stigmas attached to the disfigurement, morbidity, and disability caused by NTDs tend to be especially isolating and ostracizing for women. Women who have suffered from disfiguring NTDs such as lymphatic filariasis or onchoerciasis have lost their jobs, lost their families, and even been prevented from seeking medical attention. Further, NTDs pose special risks to women sexually and reproductively.  NTD infections cause women in particular to be especially at risk for sexually transmitted diseases. Genital sores on women caused by schistosomiasis have been shown to increase the risk of HIV infection threefold. Both schistosomiasis and roundworm have been linked to maternal anemia during pregnancy, leading to complications, as well as low birth weight and sterility. For gender equality to be reached, these diseases which disproportionately affect women must be dealt with.

 Those two points together make a strong case for NTD treatment, but there’s even more to be said in terms of social well-being and justice. Nations which are unstable or volatile, such as Pakistan, Niger, or Sudan, tend to have a high NTD disease burden. That is no coincidence. NTDs breed the poverty and inequality that give rise to political instability and violence. NTD treatment would not only heal the sick and help the poor, but it would help to stabilize nations and entire regions.

 So tomorrow, as you enjoy your Saturday, remember those less fortunate than you. Remember those for whom survival is a daily struggle, poverty an unavoidable fact of life, and political instability and violence an ever present threat. Then consider that treatment for the seven most common NTDs can be provided for only 50 cents a year per person. Consider all the good that can be done for such a small price.

 The UN created World Day of Social Justice with an eye towards a better future. For that to be accomplished, NTD treatment must be part of the plan.

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    • The Global Network for Neglected Tropical Diseases is a major advocacy and resource mobilization initiative of the Sabin Vaccine Institute dedicated to raising the awareness, political will, and funding necessary to control and eliminate the most common neglected tropical diseases (NTDs)--a group of disabling, disfiguring, and deadly diseases affecting more than 1.4 billion people worldwide living on less than $1.25 a day.
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