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Health

UNICEF Launches Annual Aid Appeal

The United Nations children's agency is launching its global annual appeal for funding for women and children caught in various crises.  Within that appeal, the agency called for donors to contribute $303 million to projects in eight countries in Eastern and Southern Africa, with the bulk going to Ethiopia, Somalia, and Zimbabwe.   UNICEF’s...

Oxfam Warns of 'Forgotten Emergency' in West Africa

The International aid group Oxfam is warning the crisis in Ivory Coast is creating another “forgotten emergency” in Africa as thousands of Ivorian refugees flee into neighboring Liberia. Tariq Riebl spoke to Voice of America from Liberia’s capital Monrovia. He says the number of Ivorian refugees in Liberia has increased dramatically in recent...

Peace Corps Mission Unchanged 50 Years Later

<!--IMAGE-->This month, the Peace Corps marks 50 years of work across the developing world. It was founded in 1961 by President John F. Kennedy and has been supported by other presidents, including Barack Obama, who has emphasized the need for public service. This month’s celebrations will recognize the achievements of volunteers past and...

Closing Gender Gap Could Boost World Food Supply

Food prices continue to rise, threatening to push more and more people into poverty and hunger. A new report from the UN food agency says one of the best ways to boost agricultural productivity worldwide would be to remove the barriers women farmers face that their male counterparts do not. Women farmers tend to be less productive than men, but...

Fistula: Healing the Pain of Obstructed Labor

A medical aid group says many pregnant African women suffer needlessly from complicated or prolonged labor. As a result, they’re forced to live with obstetric fistula – a condition that scars them physically, emotionally and socially.  Doctors Without Borders is highlighting the problem as the world marks the 100th anniversary of International...

President Mugabe on Medical Trip to Asia

A spokesman for Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe says his three-day medical trip to Asia is " no cause for alarm".President Mugabe's spokesman says he went to Singapore Thursday for a follow up examination following cataract surgery last year. He is expected to return home on Sunday.Mugabe has spent a month in Asia for medical purposes since...

Somalia Fighting Forces Thousands of Refugees Into Kenya

Refugees are pouring across the Kenyan border as fighting between the Somali government and rebel group al-Shabab rages across the war torn country. The Somali government’s recent push to eliminate al-Qaida linked insurgents is spilling into Kenya, as fighting continues along the border. On February 24, the Transitional Federal Government launched...

UN Panel Calls for Fund to Help Rape Victims in DRC

A high-level panel on victims of sexual violence is calling for the establishment of a reparation fund for thousands of rape victims in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).  A new United Nations report finds that rape victims suffer from stigmatization, lack of medical and psychological care and are given little or no access to justice. The 55-...

Encouraging Progress in Girls’ Education

As the world prepares to mark the 100th anniversary of International Women’s Day on March 8, a new report details the progress and challenges girls face in getting an education. The report – from the Education for All Fast Track Initiative – highlights the importance of girls’ education for economic and social development.  It follows progress in...

Ivory Coast Civilians Find Shelter from Fighting in Abidjan Church

In Ivory Coast, more than 30,000 people have fled a neighborhood of the commercial capital Abidjan because of fighting between supporters of the country's rival governments. One church has become a sanctuary for some of those displaced. At the gates of Abidjan's Saint Ambroise Church, young volunteers come early to greet families who are fleeing...

Investment In Infrastructure Crucial to Africa's Economic Growth

Some development analysts question whether Africa’s current rapid economic growth will fade like the surge in the 1970s. Others say today’s growth is different.  The last such period was centered on Africa’s oil; today, they say, investors are interested in a number of sectors, including banking, tourism and agriculture. And, economists say...

AIDS: Treating Poor HIV Positive Pregnant Women

In a former township outside of Cape Town, South Africa, there’s a high rate of HIV infection among pregnant women.  Many are unable to get the treatment they need to save their lives and the lives of their children.  But that’s about to change with the launch of a new project that aims to break down barriers to antiretroviral therapy. The man in...

Somalia: Drought Brings Water Shortages, High Food Prices

Somalia has one of the world’s worst humanitarian disasters, with hundreds of thousands of people displaced due to conflict.  Now, a prolonged drought is adding to the country’s many problems.  A top U.N. official says he wants the Somali people to know that aid agencies will do everything they can to help. U.N. Humanitarian Coordinator for...

EPA Chief Promotes Green Partnerships in E. Africa

The head of the US Environmental Protection Agency has been promoting green technology partnerships during a trip to East Africa. One project is aimed at resolving Ethiopia’s most pressing environmental concerns.Tedla Woldemichael is an environmental activist working to promote fuel-efficient cooking stoves in mostly rural southern Ethiopia.He was...

South Sudan Facing Many Challenges as New Nation

As south Sudan prepares for nationhood in a few months, leaders in government, civil society and the donor community are struggling with the many needs of what is soon to be Africa’s newest state. They agree that the challenges are enormous, but differ over the most important priority when asked the question during a recent visit to Juba. A series...