June 21, 2013
Greetings from Honduras.
The “Alta Outcome Document,” described in a VOA headline as “Indigenous Peoples Stand Up to Exploitation” and more circumspectly by The United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues (UNPFII) — an official advisory body to the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) — as “a set of recommendations,” was signed in Alta, Norway on June 12, 2013 with the expectation that it will serve as the basis for the upcoming UN World Conference on Indigenous Peoples in September 2014.
Two of the main themes of the Alta Declaration are directly related to approaches strongly advocated in this Blog site: (1) participatory involvement of persons directly impacted by “development” interventions and (2) the need to understand, acknowledge, and respect non-formal parallel governance systems to achieve more effective, efficient and properly targeted assistance to poor people.
For further information on the UN-sponsored World Conference for Indigenous People, September 22-23, 2014 (New York, NY), see http://www.wcip2014.org/ — a very good source of information about “indigenous people” worldwide and, in particular, http://www.wcip2014.org/background .
For UNPFII’s description of the “Alta Outcome Document,” see http://social.un.org/index/IndigenousPeoples/tabid/70/articleType/ArticleView/articleId/151/Preparatory-Meeting-in-Norway-Declares-Common-Position-for-2014-World-Conference-on-Indigenous-Peoples-to-Be-Held-at-Headquarters-22-23-September.aspx .
For VOA’s background coverage of the meeting in Alta see http://www.voanews.com/content/indigenous-peoples-21jun13/1686379.html .
April 24, 2013
Help the Uweza Foundation meet the “Raise for Women Challenge” sponsored by The Huffington Post, Skoll Foundation, and Half The Sky Movement by donating any amount through Crowdrise at either http://www.crowdrise.com/UwezaGirls or http://www.crowdrise.com/uwezagirls/fundraiser/uweza . A donation is any amount whatsoever will be very much appreciated.
If you believe as I do that developing girls’ self-esteem and providing them with advanced formal education is an important contribution to breaking the cycle of poverty, please donate today. The Challenge is open for only a short period of time – from today (April 24th) to Thursday, June 6th.
The sponsors of this Challenge will donate up to an additional $25 thousand depending on the amount raised by Uweza (or other NGOs) during the short time available under the terms of this fund-raising competition.
Information, films, and photos focused on Uweza – a US tax-exempt 501(c)(3) Foundation registered in the State of Illinois – supports several “demand-responsive” programs assisting children and women in Kibera, a slum neighboring Nairobi, Kenya, is also available at either of those two websites.
Uweza has very low overheads and accomplishes an awful lot of good on an annual budget of only about $150 thousand a year. As a former World Bank staff person used to dealing in much larger sums, I cannot express how impressed I am by the due diligence, record keeping, and fundamental accomplishments of this small NGO.
In the interest of full-disclosure, I am one of only five (5) completely unpaid volunteer Uweza Board Members, the only male, and by far the oldest.
Best Wishes, Jerry
April 10, 2013
As many of you know, I am on the Board of a US-based Non-Profit (the Uweza Aid Foundation) that assists women and children in Kibera, the largest “slum” — or preferably non-formal settlement — at the periphery of Naroibi, Kenya. With that in mind, I believe you will find this article — …Empowering Kenyan Girls is the Next Step for a Peaceful Kenya both interesting and informative.
Written by fellow Uweza Board member Amy Augustin, the article focuses primarily on the need for, and results of, Uweza’s collaboration with No Means No Worldwide to provide a two-day self-defense and life skills training course to more than thirty girls at Uweza’s Kibera community center. This is an important program in the face of an epidemic of gender-based violence in non-formal settlements like Kibera throughout much of the world.
Clearly, Uweza’s work in Kibera is entirely consistent with the “demand-driven” approach advocated my blog International Development Should….
March 27, 2012
My review of Rachel Maddow’s first book “Drift: The Unmooring of American Military Power“ has just been published by the New York Journal of Books; just click on this link — http://www.nyjournalofbooks.com/review/drift-unmooring-american-military-power.
This is an interesting book that ought to be taken seriously. Unfortunately, I suspect some people will not read it just because of their attitude toward the author.
March 13, 2012
My review of “Pax Ethnica: Where and How Diversity Succeeds“ by Karl Meyer and Shareen Blair Brysac has just been published by the New York Journal of Books. Another book that I can highly recommend; a useful antidote to those who argue for fundamental clashes of civilizations. Just click on http://www.nyjournalofbooks.com/review/pax-ethnica-where-and-how-diversity-succeeds.
February 7, 2012
My review of “War Time: An Idea, Its History, Its Consequences” by Mary Dudziak has just been published by the New York Journal of Books. Finally, a book that I can highly recommend. Just click on http://www.nyjournalofbooks.com/review/war-time-idea-its-history-its-consequences-0 .