Today the US, Russia, and close to 40 other countries have assembled to discuss an end to three years of bloodshed in Syria. If all goes well, the regime and opposition delegations will begin negotiations on Friday. But who will be at the table?
In partnership with the Center for Civil Society and Democracy in Syria, Inclusive Security conducted a survey of 110 women living and working inside Syria. The resulting… Continue
Added by Inclusive Security on January 22, 2014 at 8:00pm —
Check out my latest article in Foreign Policy on new developments at the Colombian peace talks in Havana: http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2013/11/27/tables_turned_colombia_farc_talks.
To follow the Colombian peace talks and related issues, see my blog at vbouvier.wordpress.com.
Added by Virginia Bouvier on November 29, 2013 at 11:22am —
Why do organizations solicit participation from “local stakeholders” when the people exist there already, creating movements and advocating for themselves?
This was the question of one development practitioner who witnessed people’s power and their movements for social change, as they were the “owners of the issue” after a natural disaster in her home country (anonymous, personal communication, July 10, 2013). The practitioner determined that her…
Added by Katie Moore on September 3, 2013 at 9:58am —
By Beverly Bell
September 5, 2012
Beverly Bell interviews Leslie Thatcher, content relations editor at Truthout, one of a number of independent, non-commercial news sites that offer an alternative to corporate-controlled media. In a world where corporations are considered persons and a few individuals are funding the lion’s share of the presidential elections, independent media is critical to keeping citizens informed and motivated defenders of… Continue
Added by Deepa Panchang on September 5, 2012 at 12:18pm —
If you've ever had any doubts that international aid or global health is a business, then one visit to an International AIDS Conference will clear them away. Between the free frozen yogurt from big pharma and bookend speeches from the Clintons, it was hard to ignore what a "sexy" disease HIV was last week in Washington D.C.…
Added by Jennifer Lentfer on August 1, 2012 at 9:00am —
Rich countries delivered $3.2 trillion of aid to poor countries between 1960 and 2008 (World Bank, 2011). Yet only 36% of aid workers think projects achieve their intended impact (McKinsey & Devex, 2011).
Aid recipients agree, calling for a change in aid’s business model—from that of delivery of goods and… Continue
Added by Jennifer Lentfer on May 10, 2012 at 10:54pm —
I've often said that it was easier for me to move to rural Zimbabwe than to Detroit. When people ask me why this farm-girl-turned-aid-worker devoted myself to placing community-driven development initiatives at the forefront of aid, here’s why:…
Added by Jennifer Lentfer on May 7, 2012 at 8:21pm —
“Let go and let God.” It’s a mantra of Alcoholics Anonymous. And after the last week or so, I’m wondering if it’s time for international aid to adopt the same approach to recovery (with more politically correct secular references of course).
Last week I attended the “Summit for Aid Effectiveness in Global… Continue
Added by Jennifer Lentfer on May 5, 2012 at 7:07am —
Understanding the organizational dynamics of local, indigenous, community-based groups directly serving vulnerable families is vastly different from the project-based, accountability-by-paper world of the aid industry. While those in the aid system may acknowledge local groups’ resourcefulness in mobilizing local resources, their language and cultural competencies, and responsiveness to communities’ needs, there are challenges in working with local groups that many organizations are not up… Continue
Added by Jennifer Lentfer on April 8, 2012 at 11:00am —
Andebo Pax Pascal shares his experience as an aid worker in Africa’s newest country in his second guest post. By examining beneficiaries’ place (or lack thereof) in two projects, he explores whether the development discourse has drifted into the abstract, beyond those he serves.
The idea of different categories of people--donors, government representatives,… Continue
Added by Jennifer Lentfer on April 1, 2012 at 9:09am —
When I was a girl, I wanted a horse, sooooo bad. Every Christmas, every birthday, I had but one request.
“Please, Dad, I just want a horse.”
“There are no horses on pig farms,” my father would flatly respond.
But maybe my cowgirl dreams have finally come true. Because now…this farmer’s daughter is working for the cowboys.…
Added by Jennifer Lentfer on March 21, 2012 at 8:30am —
Solome Lemma (@InnovateAfrica) and I hosted a live discussion today to reflect together on the issues that came up from our posts on #StopKony. Sharing an excerpt below. Photo below by Joop… Continue
Added by Jennifer Lentfer on March 12, 2012 at 8:11pm —
Reposting this in honor of International Women's Day and to welcome new readers wanting the think deeper about Invisible Children's #StopKony Campaign...Check out the great graphic from See Africa Differently at the end!
When girls are educated, healthy, and safe, their own life prospects are transformed. And importantly, they transfer those benefits to their future families and their communities. When girls have access to…
Added by Jennifer Lentfer on March 8, 2012 at 10:43am —
Do you have a colleague that just won’t shut up about the fight he’s having with his sibling over their family's vacation home? Or one who dressed way too provocatively when you were on that field visit last week? What about the person who constantly blames everything that doesn’t go their way on the incapacity or corruption of “the locals”?
We have all worked with these people. Perhaps we have even been these people at times. We didn’t know any better…until we did.…
Added by Jennifer Lentfer on March 5, 2012 at 7:30am —
1. ergh: used when in a state of disgust, confusion, frustration, or convulsion. "ergh, I just threw up all over the keyboard." "ergh, that's wrong." (from Urban Dictionary)
It’s proposal purgatory time at the aid agency where I’m currently working. And one of the joys, the inescapable joys of this time, is completing the accompanying … Continue
Added by Jennifer Lentfer on February 26, 2012 at 10:26pm —
Re-posting this series from the early days of how-matters.org…
Adapted from: The Barefoot Collective. (2009). The Barefoot Guide to Working with Organizations and Social Change. Cape Town: Community Development Resource Association. www.barefootguide.org
In order to build authentic relationships with grassroots…
Added by Jennifer Lentfer on February 23, 2012 at 11:00pm —
We don’t talk about our hearts nearly enough in international aid and philanthropy. But this Valentine’s Day seems like a good time to do so. Our hearts draw us to this work, and if we keep them open enough, they are what tie us to this work when the frustrations and obstacles seem insurmountable.
A community leader and member of the Winnebago Tribe of Nebraska,… Continue
Added by Jennifer Lentfer on February 14, 2012 at 10:30am —
I often find that aid blogs tend to criticize much, offer solutions too little. Orietta L’Abbate, CEO of AAE Australia Inc., shares her proposal for the future of aid.
What do you think? Could it work?
And if the answer is no, you’d better be ready to offer your own new idea. Let’s hear it.
Large scale aid intervention in large scale disaster has shown its slowness and its inability to cooperate and effectively intervene in the Haiti 2010… Continue
Added by Jennifer Lentfer on January 30, 2012 at 8:00am —
Too many TED talks. Too little time. Here’s seven interesting ones I’ve come across over the last few months worth sharing with how-matters.org readers. Watch them at: http://www.how-matters.org/2012/01/24/titillating-ted-talks-two/…
Added by Jennifer Lentfer on January 24, 2012 at 9:00pm —
When Mette Müller, founder of Best Self Experience, shared the following comment on my blog, I knew I wanted to invite her to share her story:
“The grassroots [organizations] that I have worked with have been excellent in seeing development as a process rather than a large checkbox... but many aid workers (sorry sorry sorry for the generalisation) seem to misunderstand this, and project their own ambitions and understanding of… Continue
Added by Jennifer Lentfer on January 23, 2012 at 8:30am —