Being alive, being a part of a family, having friends, having adventurous opportunities, and being a part of an amazing global community of world changers, are just a tip of the ice berg of what Atlas Corps fellows are thankful for! I asked fellow Atlas Corps Fellows what they were thankful for this year, and here are some of the things they shared:
As a Social Worker I have been working with low income youth for some years in my native country, Colombia. Being a low income youth has many disadvantages, as they are more vulnerable to many social issues including crime, prostitution, teen pregnancy and substances abuse. Therefore, the plight of Colombian youth really matters to me.
Two Saturdays ago, I had the privilege of attending the Transformational Media Summit hosted by the UN Foundation and other partners at the George Washington University (GWU), Washington DC. I was expecting to learn about new information technology tools to make transformational change. What I learnt? The Bumble Bee Does Not Understand Aerodynamics. Just in the event this is your first time to hear this phrase; it is the first half of a popular idiom- The Bumble-Bee does not understand aerodynamics so it flies. According to the Law of Aerodynamics (yeah,.some laws in Physics), the Bumble Bee’s body-weight (or structure) should prevent it from flying. However, the Bumble-Bee obviously has not been in any physics class. What does this have to do with media or transformation? This story speaks to the power of each and every one to make a change, with simple ideas, tools, words or just-a touch.
About a month ago I was waiting for the bus to take me back home from the office, when a middle-aged woman sitting at the stop approached me and asked me: “Are you from around here?”.
Being the cautious individual that I am (you don’t give too much information to strangers), I vaguely responded – “Yes, I live in the neighborhood”. However, what she meant was “are you a US American?”, when I said no, she followed up with a less than logical question: “Do you know why Salvadorian women don’t wear scarves?” I was curious, and a bit annoyed,so I said no, and she jumped to answer herself: “They don’t wear scarves because they are afraid of being choked”.
Nakang is definitely a proud woman this season. The ‘rain makers’ have had mercy and the crops harvest has boomed. In South Sudan, majority of women and men do not use the word grocery store or supermarket; to us, our grocery store is the granary behind the tukul (traditional houses), or the supermarket is our crop field (garden). If your granary is full and your crops are doing better in the field, you are the successful one!
Many agree that evaluations are important, whether one works in development, humanitarian work, advocacy, civil society building or social enterprise development. Yet the attention given to evaluations does not often match its significance and various challenges, such as lack of technical capacity, inadequate resources, and lack of use of evaluation results often call into question both the value and feasibility of evaluations. This blog sets out to share some insights on system wide and organizational practices and principles that are central to ensuring that nonprofits conduct evaluations successfully.
“You were put on this earth to achieve your greatest self, to live out your purpose, and to do it courageously”-Steve Maraboli
An ode to fallen friends
This week, we all marked the International Men’s Day.
Yeah I understand that the day must have gone unnoticed for many men and women. For me too, this was the first time I ever noticed it, even though it is believed to have existed since 1960s. Since UN does not mark it in its calendar, it does not seem to have gained much in the talk of the crowd. But, does not it seem absurd speaking of men’s rights, while the whole world has been banging heads and tables to make this world a better place for women? Conversely, is it a decent initiation to restate the role of men in women’s world towards gender equity?
We all know that exactly 25 years back world leaders made a promise to children, by ratifying United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) on November 20, 1989, that we will do everything in our power to protect and promote you by providing you all your rights for survival and development. You will live healthy and happy life with education, entertainment, information, empowerment, reflection and recreation. Your voice will be heard and respected. Today when we are passing 25th fall, we haven’t seen any rise in the lives of millions of children. There are 57+ million children who are denied for their basic rights of education, millions of them are on the street, either being exploited or at risk of exploitation. Under 5 mortality is as high as 91 per 1000 in some countries, which is in gross contradiction of UNCRC’s basic principle of right of survival and denial of another promise millennium development goal 4 (reduction of child mortality). Every one out of four child is at risk of sexual abuse.