Reflections on a Journey to Liberia

By Steve Stirling, President & CEO of MAP International

MONROVIA, Liberia — I’ve been to a number of countries in Africa over the past 15 years, but this was my first visit to Liberia.  Liberians are resilient and gracious people.  They have prevailed against more than 12 years of civil war which tore apart the country, including the health systems.  In 2005, Liberians elected their first woman president, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf. She has dedicated herself to rebuilding the country. Continue reading

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Reflecting on 2016

Dr. Judy Monroe is president and CEO of the CDC Foundation.

Dr. Judy Monroe is president and CEO of the CDC Foundation.

By Dr. Judy Monroe, president & CEO of the CDC Foundation

December is a great time to reflect on the past year. By almost any measure, 2016 was eventful, with triumph as seen in the Summer Olympic Games and tragedy in the form of terrorist attacks in the United States and around the globe. But as I reflect on the past year and my first 10 months leading the CDC Foundation, I think about all I am thankful for. Continue reading

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After Divisive Election, Charity can Play Unifying Role

Tolli Love, CARE’s vice president of fundraising and marketing

Tolli Love, CARE’s vice president of fundraising and marketing

By Tolli Love, CARE’s vice president of fundraising and marketing.

Following a divisive presidential campaign, many Americans are answering the election negativity in a very positive way: by increasing their charitable support. The campaign surfaced the passions of many Americans, on issues ranging from immigration and refugees to the status of women and America’s role in the world. We immediately saw news reports on donations pouring into some groups, particularly those focused on the environment or women’s issues.

A new CARE survey indicates this is more than a small, fleeting trend. One in four Americans either already has increased or plans to increase support for nonprofits and charities as a result of the U.S. presidential election, according to the online survey of 2,054 adults conducted for CARE Nov. 28-30 by Harris Poll.

Among those ramping up their support, more than half (52 percent) say they  are doing so because it’s one way they can effect change after the election. Many (41 percent) see increased charitable support as a way to assure the U.S. remains engaged in the world. And 40 percent say they believe their favorite nonprofit or charity is under threat.  Whatever the reasons, channeling all that passion and energy into charities and nonprofits is a really positive way to move forward on the issues people care deeply about.

The survey indicates that the largest share of increased support is going to children’s charities, followed by groups supporting women’s reproductive rights/family planning, environmental protection and women’s empowerment and women’s rights. Groups focused on health care, LGBTQ rights, race relations and international humanitarian aid/global poverty also were high on the list.

CARE’s work to empower women and girls around the world overlaps with a lot of these issues, and, though it’s still early, we’ve seen signs of increased support this giving season, including through a new campaign called #DreamWithHer. It fosters a personal connection by linking people here via social media with girls in Malawi who benefit from CARE’s poverty-fighting work. By “dreaming with her,” supporters have interacted with the girls — Evelesi, Maliyana and Alinafe — asking questions about their life in Malawi and learning of their dreams for a brighter future in southern Africa. “Their energy, hope and optimism inspire me,” said CARE President and CEO Michelle Nunn after meeting the girls in person during a recent trip to Malawi. Our donors apparently feel the same, as many have enriched that connection by purchasing items from an associated gift catalog, whose proceeds support programs that help girls like Evelesi, Maliyana and Alinafe.  

Yet, as our survey indicates, it’s not just financial gifts that Americans say they are increasing; it’s also time volunteering or advocating for a cause. And we’re seeing this at CARE, too. Our advocacy network of more than 270,000 people, called CARE Action, is currently advocating for policies that empower women globally and has seen a surge of interest and engagement in this issue since the election. The number of “likes” on the network’s Facebook page has jumped by more than 20,000 since the election.

Perhaps the most encouraging revelation in the survey is that Millennials and younger GenXers are leading the trend in increased charitable support. Although young adults have been criticized for not playing a larger role in the political process, our survey indicates that the election has spurred them into action, via charitable giving, volunteerism and time spent advocating for causes they care passionately about. Even more importantly, Millennials were twice as likely as those 35 and older to say they want to work with those of different political views to solve the world’s most pressing problems. And that bodes well for our country’s future.

Starting with the delivery of more than 100 million CARE Packages after World War II, CARE has always united Americans behind the cause of helping those most in need around the world. And, at a time when the U.S. is so divided, we are ready to play that role again.

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Campaign Empowers Puerto Rican Women, Communities to Stop Zika

Lisa Splitlog, Director of Communications for the CDC Foundation

Lisa Splitlog, Director of Communications for the CDC Foundation

By Lisa Splitlog, Director of Communications for the CDC Foundation

Dr. Christine Prue spent 75 days on the ground in Puerto Rico earlier this year, leading a team that interviewed hundreds of pregnant women to gain insights into their perspectives about Zika. Christine, associate director for behavioral science for the National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), discovered that while many Puerto Rican women are challenged by their difficult circumstances, they remain resilient, strong and optimistic. Continue reading

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Partnering to Save Lives

By Jodi Allison

At MAP International, we concentrate much of our efforts on medicines that benefit those without access to the most needed life-saving drugs, such as antibiotics and oral rehydration salts. But for those living in resource-poor countries who suffer from more rare diseases, we also work directly with pharmaceutical partners to meet specific needs. One example of this is the Jimenez family. Continue reading

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Congratulations to Jonathan Samet, 2016 Fries Prize Recipient

Dee Dee Honaman, CDCF

Dee Dee Honaman, CDCF

By Dee Dee Honaman, director of special projects and Fries Prize administrator at the CDC Foundation

Air pollution is a major environmental risk to health, which is why all of us at the CDC Foundation are so pleased that Jonathan Samet, M.D., M.S., received the 2016 Fries Prize for Improving Health last week at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Dr. Samet received this prestigious recognition for his pioneering research and decades of advocacy on the negative impacts of air pollution on health. Continue reading

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The World’s Vulnerable Are Losing

Steve Stirling

Steve Stirling

By Steve Stirling

In the lead up to and aftermath of the recent presidential election, Americans have focused on winners and losers. They have watched endless coverage of the campaign, the election and now the analysis. Social media is lit up with debates and political hashtags. Continue reading

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Hurricane Matthew in Haiti: More people will die if we don’t act now

Jean Michael Vigreux, Haiti Country director

Jean Michael Vigreux, Haiti Country director

By Jean-Michel Vigreux, CARE Haiti Country Director

As the impacts of Hurricane Matthew in Haiti started to emerge, the damage from the storm immediately started being compared to the damage of the 2010 earthquake. I could not imagine that a hurricane could possibly leave comparable levels of damage as the 2010 earthquake. But then I went to Jeremie, the capital of Grand’Anse that was hardest hit by the storm, and saw firsthand the shocking level of destruction this hurricane left in its wake.   Continue reading

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Holding My Gaze on Haiti

By Jennifer Grant

It’s the first Tuesday of the month which means, where I live, that the emergency siren was tested at 10a.m. Poised to sound in the event of a tornado or other dangers, it’s a long, shrill sound, starting up like an air raid signal, swirling and filling the sky. I’ve lived here in the suburbs of Chicago for most of my life, so I barely notice the test. But this morning when it broke the morning’s silence, my thoughts—though not far from it at the time—were wrenched back to Haiti, where in the wake of Hurricane Matthew, a real emergency continues. Continue reading

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UN General Assembly Elevates Antibiotic Resistance to Crisis Level

Dr. Judy Monroe is president and CEO of the CDC Foundation.

Dr. Judy Monroe is president and CEO of the CDC Foundation.

By Dr. Judy Monroe, president & CEO of the CDC Foundation

What do we do if antibiotics no longer work and are no longer the “miracle drug” we’ve all come to take for granted since at least the 1940s? This question was a key topic at the 71st session of the United Nations (UN) General Assembly in New York City at the end of September, and weighed heavily on my mind. This was only the fourth time in UN history that a health issue has been the topic of the main high level meeting at the assembly, where heads of state dig deeper into one key issue affecting the world.  For anti-microbial resistance to be elevated in such a manner shows that we are facing a serious global problem if we don’t find solutions now. Continue reading

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