Slow responses on the behalf of West African nations and the international community have allowed the outbreak of Ebola in West Africa to transition into a full scale international bio-hazard. Officials of the World Health Organization (WHO) state there have been more than 730 deaths, including 60 health workers, from West Africa's first and current Ebola outbreak. The disease has infiltrated Sierra Leone, Guinea, Liberia and most recently Nigeria. The fears by the international community that the disease will spread to neighboring countries have been realized. This is especially concerning, because the disease is not curable and carries with it an up to 90 percent fatality rate. Dr. Margaret Chan, the WHO director general, has stated that if the contagion is not contained soon the effects could be, "catastrophic."
Al Flowers stepped to the press conference microphone and led with a tone of levity and appreciation. This was the response coming from a man recently thumped by several police officers late at night in his own home.
A Mississippi Freedom Summer pilgrimage: An atrocity we must never forget
Monday, 04 August 2014 15:15
Marian Wright Edelman and Julia Cass
Along a back road near Philadelphia, Mississippi, was the final stop on our step-by-step journey through the final tragic day of Freedom Summer volunteers James Chaney, Andrew Goodman, and Michael Schwerner. Our guide was Leroy Clemons, a longtime local leader and activist whose family was involved in the civil rights movement in Neshoba County and who is prominently featured in the excellent documentary "Neshoba: The Price of Freedom."
BUILDing strong leaders, BUILDing strong communities
Monday, 28 July 2014 14:50
Good things are happening in North Minneapolis.
If one watches the local news one would think there is only bad news about the cities Northside. Yes, there have been many losses to violence, and those losses bring great sadness to the community. While we mourn the losses, we also vow to do better for those left behind.
Thursday, 24 July 2014 15:50
Marian Wright Edelman
"None of us had any real education in social change. I was a biology major and a preacher. And yet we found ourselves in positions where we had to change the world . . . and what you will find is that it is easy if you listen to that still, small voice within. That's where you hear God." These wise words were shared recently by civil rights warrior and former Atlanta mayor and United Nations Ambassador Andrew Young with nearly 2,000 college students and teachers gathered together to prepare to conduct summer Children's Defense Fund Freedom Schools® programs. They are literacy rich child empowerment programs for pre-K-12th grade students to staunch summer leaning loss. Andy Young reminded all of us how critical it is to find significance and purpose in one's life's work—one worth living and dying for: "Now, Dr. King used to tell us all the time, 'You're going to die, but you don't have anything to say about where you die, how you die, when you die. The only choice you have is what it is you die for.' So each day you need to chart your life so that if your life were taken on that day, people would say, 'This is what he gave his life for' or 'This is what she gave her life for.'"