Saturday, March 14, 2015

Blog #14- First Lady of Kenya, Intergenerational Discussions and Broadway-Liv

Blog #14-First Lady of Kenya, Inter-generational discussions and Broadway-Liv

Today began with an inspiring discussion hosted by the leaders of Kenya, to include the First Lady of Kenya.  The session focused on her initiative Beyond Zero, a mobile health clinic with over twenty clinics that can travel far into lands that are normally unreachable by ordinary means of transportation.  Her clinics focus on child, infant, mother health and HIV/AIDS awareness and treatment.  As a result of her efforts, the areas treated by these mobile clinics have seen a reduction in infant mortality and rates of HIV cases have decreased. 
The mobile clinics also assist with childbirth and can perform minor surgeries.  The First Lady’s programs have help thousands in rural and poverty ridden areas of Kenya and give hope to the rest of the world that with effort, programs that make a difference can be created and funded.

The last event that I attended today was an all-day Intergenerational discussion on issues facing youth and women.  The session that I attended was primarily dominated by older women and the youth presence in any panel or discussion was limited at best.  Of the audience members who were called on, fewer than half were younger than 30 and all made comments on the lack of youth in the event and that it was not in fact a discussion, but an older generation dominated discussion.  Among some of the best points made, the question “how can we have a intergenerational discussion, if we do not have a strong youth presence and our presence is not valued?”  This is a valuable point in that many youth have strong and excellent points of view and know exactly how to address their issues, yet they are not given the proper respect or attention as they are viewed as less worldly or experienced.  If we want young girls to grow up to be strong leaders, we need to build them up while they are young to set them up for success.

The evening concluded with a viewing of Les Misérables on Broadway.  My last time seeing a play on Broadway was when I was 18 years old.  It felt good to see a quality production in an iconic setting.  What a wonderful conclusion to a crazy and exciting week.  Thank you so much to all who helped to get us to CSW.  I appreciate everything that you have done for us.

1 comment:

  1. I was thinking of all of you at Les Mis, and listened to the singing of "I Dreamed a Dream", by Susan Boyle. Actually was thinking that the whole Les Mis story has a lot to do with the subjects of all of your Fellows research, the equality for workers, health access issues, violence against women, economic issues, women caught in armed conflicts etc. And you heard lots of the same kinds of stories from real people during CSW. What an experience. Bet your were glad to return to NC last night, and hug those sweet daughters! And surely they were delighted to see you! Glad you enjoyed the New York experience--and the wide ranging opportunities.