In September 2021, children in the northern hemisphere returned to school after the summer break. For some, the end of the holidays signaled a return to normalcy and to the joys of learning after facing months of school closures due to the Covid-19 pandemic. For the majority of children in the Global South, however, the return to reality looked grimmer.
“Now is the time for a stronger, more networked and inclusive multilateral system anchored in the United Nations,” said UN Secretary-General António Guterres in his latest report “Our Common Agenda.” Indeed, there is a fork in the road: we can either choose to breakdown or to breakthrough.
Tuvalu, a small atoll island nation in the Central Pacific Ocean, is one of few countries in the world to have so far evaded the pandemic. But, while it has achieved a milestone with no recorded cases of COVID-19, its population of about 11,931 continues to battle food uncertainties and poor nutrition. These challenges, present long before the pandemic emerged, have been exacerbated by lockdown restrictions and economic hardships during the past year and a half.
Hunger, violent conflict and the visible impacts of climate change are all on the rise. World Food Day, October 16, is a reminder that we need to talk about the intricate ways that these challenges are connected—and how to tackle them together.
The world should now be more aware of likely COVID-19 devastation unless urgently checked. Last week, the World Health Organization (WHO) announced an US$8 billion plan
to quickly vaccinate many more people to expedite ending the pandemic.
World Mental Health Day
was on October 10, 2021. The theme for this year was "Mental Health in an unequal World". This is an appropriate focus given the extreme inequities to access to mental health services
that exist in our society.
China was one of the architects of the United Nations and was the first signatory of the UN Charter in San Francisco in 1945.
But it was only in October 1971, with the Chinese delegation led by Mr. Qiao Guanhua, that China’s representation at the UN resumed. Since that time, the UN has had the great privilege of witnessing and supporting China in achieving one of the greatest periods of socio-economic progress in world history.
This year’s International Day of the Girl theme, Digital Generation, Our Generation
, celebrates the potential of digital technologies while calling for the inclusion of all girls in accessing technology. The digital revolution will not be realized if girls without access to digital solutions are left behind. For years, advocates of technology for development have been repeating the mantra that technology is not a panacea
. Yet in racing to connect, catch up, and create greater access, we ignore at our own peril the inconsistent or non-existent household- and community-level access girls have to technologies. While digital solutions are available and evolving all the time, they should be accompanied by hybrid methods which include new ways to use analog technologies, so that existing local resources are reimagined and redistributed in ways that support more girls learning.
More than a month ago, she lost her parents, brother, and wife, to the coronavirus. Then her fiancé battled COVID-19, but 27-year-old Melinda Gavi said she had not contracted the disease.
Cities have been epicentres of the COVID-19 pandemic since 2020. City authorities have been the frontlines responders—from running testing stations, to managing food distribution, to disposing of corpses. Yet they are often under-resourced, and their critical role in policy implementation is often overlooked.
Last month, asylum-seeking families at the U.S.-Mexico border appeared to have won a victory, however temporary, in their last-ditch bid for safety in the United States. It was also a victory for evidence-based public health policy.
It is not uncommon for a water-centric research, policy or development organization or network to declare its long-term vision of the “water-secure world”. It reads nicely and feels great.
On this World Teachers’ Day, Education Cannot Wait (ECW), the United Nations global fund for education in emergencies and protracted crises, announced it has reached more than 4.6 million children and adolescents (48% of whom are girls) with quality education in more than 30 of the worst humanitarian crises around the world.
The USA and its allies have repeatedly stated that promoting women’s rights was one of the key reasons they were in Afghanistan. The US military top brass, in a letter to marines stated that they were in Afghanistan “for the liberty of young Afghan girls, women, boys, and men who want the same individual freedoms we enjoy as Americans”.
The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the face of education globally, but for children in emergencies and protracted crises, its blow has been particularly devastating.
There is broad consensus that realizing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the Paris Agreement on climate change require a transformative agenda for agriculture and food systems. In this context, the importance of mobilizing more investments and aligning them to sustainable development and inclusive rural transformation objectives, is widely acknowledged.
Telemedicine and health-related information have experienced a massive uptake since the COVID-19 pandemic began last year. While online health services are seen as a panacea for many ills, disinformation and fake news reports have tarnished their credibility.
The growing number and share of older persons in Asia and the Pacific represent success stories of declining fertility and increasing longevity; the result of advances in social and economic development. This demographic transition is taking place against the backdrop of the accelerating Fourth Industrial Revolution. But COVID-19, with its epicentre now in Asia and the Pacific, has exacerbated the suffering of older persons in vulnerable situations and demonstrated the fragility of this progress.
Amidst the verdant hills and remote corners of Vietnam’s rural regions, the growth that has transformed the economy in this part of Southeast Asia in recent decades can be hard to see. Undernourishment among children still results in stunting – even in cities too where overweight/obesity is also on the rise.
I assume channel surfing and internet browsing contribute to a decrease in people’s attention span. I am not familiar with any scientific proof, though while working as a teacher I found that some students may be exhausted when five minutes of a lesson has passed and begin fingering on their smartphones. They might also complain if a text is longer than half a page, while finding it almost impossible to read a book.
A new dawn has come, and it was through the work of Yohei Sasakawa, the WHO Goodwill Ambassador for Leprosy Elimination, that those affected by leprosy now had a voice to speak for themselves.