Coalition Member Spotlight: St Christopher’s Hospice

The Hilton Prize Coalition shines a spotlight on Laureate member St Christopher’s HospiceSt Christopher’s was the world’s first modern hospice established by Dame Cicely Saunders in 1967, transforming care for the dying around the world. In 2001, St Christopher’s was awarded the Conrad N. Hilton Humanitarian Prize for the work originated by Dame Cicely through the hospice. Now, over 50 years later, the world still looks to St Christopher’s for advice, support, and ideas in how best to care for people through serious illness, death, and bereavement.

St Christopher’s has experience supporting people at some of the most difficult and frightening times in their lives and, in the last year alone, provided that support to over 6,500 across the diverse communities of south east London. Striving to have the resources to reach everyone who needs them, St Christopher’s needed an innovative solution to make quality end of life care available to all.

The new Learning Hub will equip and empower members of the public to support their loved ones at home. 

For St Christopher’s, education is the answer. Based on their model, good education underpins good care. In the last year, St Christopher’s provided training to over 7,000 people from 45 different countries; working with them to develop and improve care for those living with life-changing conditions and their families wherever they are in the world. Their Education Centre is the world’s first specializing in palliative care; however, their current facilities are outdated, inflexible, and without the technology needed to help them connect effectively with people who want to learn remotely.

That’s why, to mark their 50th anniversary, St Christopher’s embarked on a campaign to build a new, world-class education center known as The Learning Hub. This Hub will support St Christopher’s in realizing their vision of a world in which all dying people and those close to them have access to the care and support they need—when and wherever they need it.

St Christopher’s has the skills to equip and empower members of the public to care for their loved ones. End of life care is not restricted to professionals anymore. St Christopher’s believes that it’s essential to provide support to the general public, patients, families, and carers if they are to effect real change for dying people and their families across the world.As well as increasing the number of people they train, the Hub will also enable St Christopher’s to pioneer new ways of teaching. Many people want to play a part in caring for someone they love at the end of life but often lack the confidence or skills required to do so. One wife of a patient supported by St Christopher’s outlined the critical nature of this need: “We had never nursed anyone before, let alone a terminally ill person, and we really struggled to cope with some of the most basic, simple caring tasks. One day we saw a nurse at St Christopher’s do this so beautifully and we wept because we wanted to do it that beautifully and didn’t know how. We realised with a few basic nursing skills we could have done a much better job and, perhaps, kept him at home much longer.”

An artist’s impression of the Learning Hub

The Learning Hub is just one of the ways St Christopher’s will ensure generations to come will have the benefit of the care at St Christopher’s. On Friday, June 22, which would have been their founder, Dame Cicely Saunders, 100th birthday, St Christopher’s was proud  to see the first spade enter the ground and building work on the Learning Hub begin.

Works are expected to take 18 months to complete. To find out more about the Learning Hub visit St Christopher’s website.

(Photos courtesy of St Christopher’s Hospice)

About The Hilton Prize Coalition
The Hilton Prize Coalition is an independent alliance of the 22 winners of the Conrad N. Hilton Humanitarian Prize, working together to achieve collective impact. Through three signature programs—the Fellows Program, the Collaborative Models Program and the Storytelling Program—the Coalition leverages the resources, talents and expertise of each of its members to innovate and establish best practices that can be shared with the global NGO and donor communities. Working in more than 170 countries, the Coalition is governed by a board comprised of the leaders of the Prize-winning organizations led by an Executive Committee and a Secretariat, Global Impact.

To learn more about the Hilton Prize Coalition, visit prizecoalition.charity.org, or contact prizecoalition@charity.org. Follow the Hilton Prize Coalition on Twitter and LinkedIn, and “Like” us on Facebook.

 

HPC Fellow: Vida Garcia, Global Impact

Vida Garcia is a Hilton Prize Coalition Fellow based at Global Impact, the Secretariat of the Hilton Prize Coalition. During her fellowship, she had the opportunity to engage in event planning, data analysis, and communication projects. Here are some of her reflections on leadership and her experiences at Global Impact.

Helping through Leadership
By Vida Garcia

woman speaking at podium

Vida speaking at a United States Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS) naturalization ceremony.

In his 45 years of life, my father has touched many lives: friends, neighbors, former drug addicts, refugees, and my own. He has the innate ability to build long-lasting relationships; he is a paradigm of service. To my father, service is more than what you do, it is defined by who you are. From a very young age, I have aspired to affect people in the manner that my dad does, but my vision has expanded beyond my immediate neighbors. I decided to study International Relations and Political Science, so that I can better understand global affairs and, through the use of diplomacy, help solve future conflict in the world. Like my dad, I want to be a leader who inspires people and brings them together to help those in need.

There are many theories of leadership. For example, some people believe that leaders are born, not made, but in my experience the opposite is also true. Sometimes life takes you on a rollercoaster of adventures that end up shaping who you are and who you are going to become. My dad always says that everyone’s rollercoaster is different. In the end, it is up to you to either let those experiences dishearten and crush you or strengthen your character to help you grow. He says that people will try to tell you who you are based on where you’ve been, but that just means you’ll have to work a little harder to show them “no, this is who I am.” If you’ve risen from adversity by overcoming the obstacles that have come your way, people will eventually see the strength within you.

One thing everyone seems to agree on is that the most effective leaders are those who lead by example, whether by setting an example themselves or by following the examples of those who came before them. In my experience, some qualities that effective leaders have in common are being consistent in their work, setting up realistic and concrete goals for their teams, providing clear direction and context, and being effective mentors.

Something that is often overlooked is that effective leaders are able to inspire. From my dad, I’ve learned that true leaders make people want to follow them based on their character, morality, or work ethic. Throughout my fellowship with Global Impact, the Hilton Prize Coalition’s Secretariat, I’ve been surrounded by leaders that do just that. I’ve noticed that they find passion in their work and in turn project this passion through their leadership styles, and this has been one of the most valuable lessons I’ve learned. By following their lead, I am developing the skills necessary to become a leader who inspires others.

Based at the Secretariat, Global Impact, I have had the unique opportunity to immerse myself in each Laureate organization and its mission. Supporting the Hilton Prize Coalition Fellowship and Storytelling Programs, I have gained skills in event planning, data collection and analysis, as well as communications. My primary work for the Fellowship Program is to plan a summit where three cohorts of Hilton Prize Coalition Fellows can convene to catch up, share lessons learned, and deepen their connections. The summit will allow Hilton Prize Coalition Fellows to strengthen their network of like-minded peers as they begin to advance through their careers in the humanitarian sector.

The Fellows network provides future humanitarian leaders with a network of support to lean on and glean ideas from as they do the hard work of international development. Through planning this summit, I’m doing what I’ve always wanted to do. I’m bringing people together to help those in need. A common piece of advice I’ve heard as a student is to find my passion and follow it. I’ve been lucky enough to have found my passion early on through my dad. Now, I’m able to pursue a career that complements it. Knowing why your work matters and that you are making an impact in people’s lives around the world is one of the most fulfilling parts of working with the Hilton Prize Coalition.

About The Hilton Prize Coalition

The  Hilton Prize Coalition  is an independent alliance of the 22 winners of the Conrad N. Hilton Humanitarian Prize, working together to achieve collective impact. Through three signature programs—the  Fellows Program, the  Collaborative Models Program  and the  Storytelling Program—the Coalition leverages the resources, talents and expertise of each of its members to innovate and establish best practices that can be shared with the global NGO and donor communities. Working in more than 170 countries, the Coalition is governed by a board comprised of the leaders of the Prize-winning organizations led by an Executive Committee and a Secretariat,  Global Impact.

To learn more about the Hilton Prize Coalition, visit  prizecoalition.charity.org, or contact  prizecoalition@charity.org. Follow  the Hilton Prize Coalition on  Twitter and  LinkedIn, and “Like” us on Facebook.

HPC Fellow: James Eckford, ECPAT International

James Eckford is a current Hilton Prize Coalition Fellow with ECPAT International, the only international NGO network solely dedicated to the fight against the sexual exploitation of children around the world. In his blog, James reflects upon the mission of ECPAT, human dignity, sustainable development, and his work.

Human Rights: A Question of Dignity and Economic Equality
By James Eckford

As I neared the end of my bachelor’s degree in International Relations and faced the dilemma of choosing a thesis topic, I found myself instinctively disregarding the high-profile and glamorous subject of international diplomacy and instead focused on the gritty and deeply frustrating world of human rights. Making this decision was not a practical or logical choice, the field of human rights is famously exclusive and highly competitive. I thus decided to work abroad, learn some languages and save up for a masters’ degree.

This journey abroad further fueled my passion. Living in Beijing for three years, I gained a practical and visceral experience in human rights. One that turned my perspectives and ideology upside down. In China, the very term “human rights” is taboo. To claim a right from the government is to declare they are not doing their job, and it is not the duty of the citizen to tell the government how to do their job. In human rights, we strive to fight for those who have no voice, but what of those who have a voice, face injustice, but choose not to use it?

This fundamental question drove me to write my thesis on pollution protesting in China and examine the possibility of a human rights consciousness emerging in Chinese society. Could smog be the phenomenon that pushes Chinese people to realize that they can preserve their dignity in the face of government repression? Dignity is a universal concept, yet deeply subjective. The threshold for loss of dignity in China may be higher than that in the west, but it exists.

Surprisingly, this abstract question of human dignity would be relevant to the subject of my internship: sexual exploitation of children in travel and tourism. Do child victims of sexual exploitation see themselves as victims or rights holders? The core problem of this particular manifestation of sexual exploitation of children (SEC) is economic inequality; tourism allows two vastly separate worlds to collide. The introduction of wealth via tourists into poor spaces creates an inevitable tension of disparity that is conducive to exploitation.

While the tourist finds themselves in an apparently poorly governed and culturally alien environment, the family of the child or even the child themselves has found an opportunity to earn well above the average salary. What qualifies this as exploitation is the innocence of the child, their lack of control or autonomy, and complete surrender of humanity and dignity. The economic and social conditions that have resulted from distant historical events led to this exchange; those events, far beyond the world of the exploiter and exploited, have affected millions of children around the world for generations. Only just recently is the world waking up to the horrific injustices borne by the nexus of gender and income inequality. The #MeToo movement has enlightened much of the western world to the dangers of victim blaming, challenging previously accepted norms and paradigms that caused silent suffering.

Even though mindsets seem to be slowly evolving for the better, how do we solve injustices brought about by economic inequality? It’s a question that begs such a large structural adjustment of the global economy and markets that it seems insurmountable, however, the rhetoric of sustainable development promises change. It seeks to essentially adjust the language of capitalism from growth-based targets to sustainable ones in order to address profit-based decisions which end up having adverse effects on communities and populations.

ECPAT’s ambitious strategy to fight the sexual exploitation of children in travel and tourism (SECTT) is to take both the sustainable development and corporate social responsibility route because the private sector is used to facilitate sexual violence against children. The private sector’s role cannot be understated. I strongly believe that awareness campaigns and child protection policies can make a difference in deterring SECTT. While there is no typical offender, a large proportion of offenders are in fact situational, it is the perception of tolerance, acceptability, impunity, and power imbalance that spurs them to sexually exploit children, rather than an inherent attraction to children. This means that collaborative action between the private sector, governments, NGOs, and law enforcement can be effective in reducing SECTT around the world; situational offenders are unlikely to commit this crime if they respect the laws and society of their destination as much as their source country.

Besides the subject itself, ECPAT taught me many things about working in an NGO: the constant struggle for funding, diplomacy with governments, collaboration with other NGOs, engagement with the public, and project management. It was finally a chance to see how everything I learned in my master’s degree could be put into practice, as well as to see things that are never taught in the classroom, such as procurement, budget approvals, and concept notes.

My next step is to build a career that fights trafficking and exploitation on a wider scale, both labor and sexual, both adults and children. Above all I want to fight for the rights of those whom society extends the least sympathy.

About The Hilton Prize Coalition

The  Hilton Prize Coalition  is an independent alliance of the 22 winners of the Conrad N. Hilton Humanitarian Prize, working together to achieve collective impact. Through three signature programs—the  Fellows Program, the  Collaborative Models Program  and the  Storytelling Program—the Coalition leverages the resources, talents and expertise of each of its members to innovate and establish best practices that can be shared with the global NGO and donor communities. Working in more than 170 countries, the Coalition is governed by a board comprised of the leaders of the Prize-winning organizations led by an Executive Committee and a Secretariat,  Global Impact.

To learn more about the Hilton Prize Coalition, visit  prizecoalition.charity.org, or contact  prizecoalition@charity.org. Follow  the Hilton Prize Coalition on  Twitter and  LinkedIn, and “Like” us on Facebook.

Coalition Member Spotlight: ECPAT International

In recognition of the World Day against Trafficking in Persons, July 30, the Hilton Prize Coalition shines a spotlight on the ECPAT International, the only international NGO network solely dedicated to the fight against the sexual exploitation of children around the world. The 2013 recipient of the Conrad N. Hilton Humanitarian Prize, ECPAT voices the rights of child victims of sexual exploitation and advocates for national policies that will protect them.

ECPAT International’s Network Development Intern, Mairi Calder, produced a short film about the collective impact of ECPAT’s work. She explains the meaning of “trafficking of children for sexual purposes” and highlights the critical nature of ECPAT’s advocacy.

ECPAT tirelessly works to raise awareness on the sexual exploitation of children with the aim of creating a global outcry and inspiring new solutions. Here are three of ECPAT’s initiatives that seek to eradicate the sexual exploitation of children:

ECPAT’s campaign Words Matter highlights the importance of using correct terminology to prevent trivialization of the issue and stigmatization of victims. ECPAT urges the public to never use terms that trivialize the sexual assault of children.

Another ECPAT initiative is the Bill of Rights, which focuses on child survivors’ recovery experiences within the judicial system and reintegration programs. In unison with their member organizations, ECPAT advocates for effective prevention and protection systems, stronger legal frameworks, as well as better implementation and cooperation between governments, the private sector, and civil society.

Through the Survivors Voices platform, ECPAT vocalizes the experiences of survivors around the world. This survivor-led movement seeks to halt the spread and ultimately eradicate the sexual exploitation of children.

ECPAT’s initiatives coordinate evidence-based advocacy to strengthen national justice and protection systems and expand investment in the fight against all forms of child sexual exploitation. For more information on ECPAT’s initiatives, visit ECPAT’s website.

About The Hilton Prize Coalition

The  Hilton Prize Coalition  is an independent alliance of the 22 winners of the Conrad N. Hilton Humanitarian Prize, working together to achieve collective impact. Through three signature programs—the  Fellows Program, the  Collaborative Models Program  and the  Storytelling Program—the Coalition leverages the resources, talents and expertise of each of its members to innovate and establish best practices that can be shared with the global NGO and donor communities. Working in more than 170 countries, the Coalition is governed by a board comprised of the leaders of the Prize-winning organizations led by an Executive Committee and a Secretariat,  Global Impact.

To learn more about the Hilton Prize Coalition, visit  prizecoalition.charity.org, or contact  prizecoalition@charity.org. Follow  the Hilton Prize Coalition on  Twitter and  LinkedIn, and “Like” us on Facebook.

July Laureate Highlights

This week the Hilton Prize Coalition showcases the work of five of its outstanding Laureates. This collection of news updates and featured blogs demonstrate the depth of the organizations that make up the Coalition. The Coalition seeks to amplify its members’ impact and promote collaboration in humanitarian assistance, human rights, development, education, and health.

In April, icddr,b’s project, Strengthening Health, Applying Research Evidence (SHARE), organized the panel “Engaging Private Sector to Achieve Universal Health Coverage in Bangladesh.” The discussion served to identify policy challenges in the private health sector in Bangladesh, explore solutions, and attribute to developing policy recommendations for future implementation.

Tostan advocates for an end to child/forced marriage, female genital cutting, child trafficking, and child labor. Focused on human rights and children’s rights, Tostan’s Child Protection Module trainings build awareness of the various moral, social, and legal norms that affect children. Tostan is also a partner of Girls Not Brides, a global partnership of more than 900 civil society organizations committed to ending child marriage and enabling girls to fulfill their potential. Tostan recently attended their second global Girls Not Brides meeting in Kuala Lampur, Malaysia.

The Task Force for Global Health’s new program MedSurplus Alliance (MSA) focuses on improving the quality and effectiveness of donated medical supplies. They also ensure that enough adequately trained personnel are available to use and maintain donated equipment. In June, the Task Force responded to Guatemala’s Fuego volcano disaster by providing critical medical supplies and equipment to healthcare workers on the frontlines.

Heifer International advances gender equity work to empower women around the world. This blog asks Heifer staffers what the term “women’s empowerment” actually means to them. For Heifer staff member Anahit Ghazanchyan, women’s empowerment means freedom.

In this briefer on their signature program Girls Project, Landesa highlights recent achievements in West Bengal, India. Landesa’s Girls Project aims to help girls realize their land rights as women. To improve girls’ economic and social prospects, Landesa addresses the lack of knowledge, common practices, and biases of land rights.

About The Hilton Prize Coalition

The  Hilton Prize Coalition  is an independent alliance of the 22 winners of the Conrad N. Hilton Humanitarian Prize, working together to achieve collective impact. Through three signature programs—the  Fellows Program, the  Collaborative Models Program  and the  Storytelling Program—the Coalition leverages the resources, talents and expertise of each of its members to innovate and establish best practices that can be shared with the global NGO and donor communities. Working in more than 170 countries, the Coalition is governed by a board comprised of the leaders of the Prize-winning organizations led by an Executive Committee and a Secretariat,  Global Impact.

To learn more about the Hilton Prize Coalition, visit  prizecoalition.charity.org, or contact  prizecoalition@charity.org. Follow the Hilton Prize Coalition on  Twitter and  LinkedIn, and “Like” us on Facebook.

Coalition Member Spotlight: International Rehabilitation Council for Torture Victims

In recognition of International Day in Support of Victims of Torture, June 26, The Hilton Prize Coalition shines a spotlight on the International Rehabilitation Council for Torture Victims (IRCT).  Advocating for the right to rehabilitation of torture victims everywhere, IRCT’s initiatives help victims rebuild their lives after torture and provide a system of support for survivors.

Established in 1985 in response to the constant use of torture by both states and non-state actors around the world, the International Rehabilitation Council for Torture Victims (IRCT) vocalizes the rights of hundreds of thousands of torture victims. IRCT was awarded the Conrad N. Hilton Humanitarian Prize in 2003 for their commitment to provide quality rehabilitation services that include medical, psychological, legal and social support.

man holding caneTorture leaves severe scars on the victim and can impact future generations due to lasting physical and psychological damage. Self-isolation and anxiety are common symptoms among many torture survivors. Depression, insomnia, and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) are also some of the cognitive conditions that affect victims of torture. Even though these conditions take a special toll on the entire family, in particular, children are most vulnerable to the after-effects of torture.

Through its Global Anti-Torture Evidence project, IRCT aims to further the global fight against torture. Using data collected throughout the rehabilitation process, IRCT strives to prevent torture, help victims rebuild their lives, and prosecute perpetrators. For this purpose, the IRCT relies on its innovative Anti-Torture Database (ATD), which is used in 43 member centers across 35 countries. These centers not only provide rehabilitation support to torture survivors, but they also pool together a larger quantity and quality of data to support strategic national, regional, and international advocacy in order to eradicate torture.

A younger program within IRCT is the Global Indicators Initiative. Launched in February of this year, the initiative seeks to develop national indicators on torture victims’ rights to rehabilitation. With workshops in Uganda and South Africa, this project seeks to enable members of IRCT to better guide their states and measure the effectiveness of rehabilitation programs. Ultimately, these indicators will become a tool used to inform governments and lead to more efficient ways to support torture survivors in rebuilding their lives.

Samuel Nsubuga, the Chief Executive Officer of IRCT member ACTV, provided commentary on how a national indicator system could improve support to torture victims in Uganda: “We have excellent laws that promise support to torture victims but in practice, the State does very little to make these promises reality. So, what we need is a framework for assessing these efforts that has the buy-in of both State agencies and civil society. Then, we can truly start to move forward on this important issue.”

IRCT and ACTV are currently working alongside national stakeholders to finalize the national indicator framework for human rights monitoring work. To learn more visit IRCT.

(Photos courtesy of IRCT)

About The Hilton Prize Coalition
The Hilton Prize Coalition is an independent alliance of the 22 winners of the Conrad N. Hilton Humanitarian Prize, working together to achieve collective impact. Through three signature programs—the Fellows Program, the Collaborative Models Program and the Storytelling Program—the Coalition leverages the resources, talents and expertise of each of its members to innovate and establish best practices that can be shared with the global NGO and donor communities. Working in more than 170 countries, the Coalition is governed by a board comprised of the leaders of the Prize-winning organizations led by an Executive Committee and a Secretariat, Global Impact.

To learn more about the Hilton Prize Coalition, visit prizecoalition.charity.org, or contact prizecoalition@charity.org. Follow the Hilton Prize Coalition on Twitter and LinkedIn, and “Like” us on Facebook.

 

refugee woman walking through settlement

Refuge: Humanity & Inclusion

The Refuge series, a production of the Hilton Prize Coalition Storytelling Program, aims to chronicle how Coalition members are addressing the global refugee crisis. The first film in the four-part Refuge series features Humanity & Inclusion’s work to improve the lives of disabled Syrian refugees in Lebanon.

To see how Humanity & Inclusion impacts the lives of Syrian refugees, watch the first film in the series, Refuge: Humanity & Inclusion, and read the article below by Jeff Meer, the U.S. Executive Director of Humanity & Inclusion. In his reflection, Jeff overviews the gap in care for disabled refugees and explains how HI seeks to close that gap. 

 

Refugees and Disability
By Jeff Meer, U.S. Executive Director of Humanity & Inclusion

Jeff Meer, U.S. Executive Director of Humanity & Inclusion

I recently received an urgent message from a large provider of refugee relief services in a Middle East country.  “We have an urgent need in the Za’atari refugee camp,” the message read, “one of the refugees there needs to be fitted for an artificial leg, and we hope Humanity & Inclusion (HI) can help.”

This sort of request for assistance by HI is incredibly common.  Why?  The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that roughly 15 percent of people on earth (or one in seven of us) live with a disability.  At the same time, the total population of displaced individuals has climbed to the greatest number ever recorded, more than 65 million globally, according to the United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR).

This means that the minimum number of persons with disabilities who are also displaced comes to nearly 9.8 million people, approximately the population of the Bay Area in California, and just slightly smaller than the population of Jakarta, Indonesia, one of the world’s largest cities.  But even this number is almost surely an undercount of the need.

In 2013, HI and HelpAge surveyed thousands of displaced Syrians living in Jordan and Lebanon, and calculated that at least 30 percent (almost double the WHO estimate) had a specific need related to a disability.  One in five displaced Syrians living in Jordan and Lebanon was affected by a physical, sensory or intellectual impairment; one in seven was affected by a chronic illness, and one in 20 suffered from a conflict injury.  Perhaps not surprising in such a population, almost half had problems accomplishing simple daily activities and were twice as likely as the general population to report signs of psychological issues from post-traumatic stress, an important and growing cause of disability.

If this were the case in every displacement, we would find that the global estimate of those living with a disability of some sort would be at least double the WHO disability estimate.  However, the fact is that we lack comprehensive statistics on the scope of this vast population.  Gathering statistics on disability in refugee and relief settings is not a priority and is therefore not done in many cases.

Even if we are not completely sure about the precise size of the disabled population in crises, why would organizations with well-developed capacity in emergency response find themselves without any capacity to do disability work?  Much of this has do to with a lack of technical knowledge and capacity.  There are just not that many organizations working in relief capable of offering the rehabilitation services needed to recover from an amputation, nor capable of fitting an artificial leg, and then ensuring that the person can learn to use the leg well. But part of the barrier is also related to stigma – even relief workers inured to difficult conditions and calamitous health issues can harbor unconscious biases about disability, preventing them from discovering the sometimes simple solutions to what can feel like complex needs.

HI, with its global mission and mandate, works in many conflict zones to ensure that the needs of individuals with disabilities are met.  But HI cannot be present everywhere, so the organization is establishing norms and protocols for other emergency response and relief organizations who come in contact with individuals with disabilities.

Among other recent initiatives, HI collaborated with other organizations to create a “Charter on the Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in Humanitarian Action.” HI has also worked collaboratively to create the “Minimum Standards for Age and Disability Inclusion in Humanitarian Action,” which was co-funded by DfID and USAID’s Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance.  HI also recently worked with UNICEF to create a series of guidebooks for those who work with children with disabilities in humanitarian settings.  This resource enables relief staff to conduct the vast majority of interventions when working among children with disabilities.

Much of HI and our partners’ work underlines a central point: assisting people with disabilities in refugee camps and humanitarian settings is not so different from helping other groups.  An essential first step is engaging people with disabilities in the planning and execution of assistance.  And making sure that those offering the assistance are confident that they can already meet many of the needs of those with disabilities.

Are we done?  Not by a long shot.  The calls keep coming, and HI keeps responding.  We do this on our own, sometimes in collaboration, and always with the needs of the people with disabilities foremost.  I am delighted to report that even before I received the email from Jordan, HI staff had already visited the individual in the refugee camp and had measured him for a new leg.  By the time you read this, he will be well on the way toward his new life, standing tall once again.

 

About The Hilton Prize Coalition
The Hilton Prize Coalition is an independent alliance of the 22 winners of the Conrad N. Hilton Humanitarian Prize, working together to achieve collective impact. Through three signature programs—the Fellows Program, the Collaborative Models Program and the Storytelling Program—the Coalition leverages the resources, talents and expertise of each of its members to innovate and establish best practices that can be shared with the global NGO and donor communities. Working in more than 170 countries, the Coalition is governed by a board comprised of the leaders of the Prize-winning organizations led by an Executive Committee and a Secretariat, Global Impact.

To learn more about the Hilton Prize Coalition, visit prizecoalition.charity.org, or contact prizecoalition@charity.org. Follow the Hilton Prize Coalition on Twitter and LinkedIn, and “Like” us on Facebook.

Group of people

HPC Fellow: Sarah Allen, BRAC USA

Sarah Allen is a current Hilton Prize Coalition Fellow with  BRAC, the largest development organization in the world, which is devoted to empowering people living in poverty. In her blog, Sarah reflects on World Refugee Day, June 20, and the work BRAC is doing to ease the plight of the Rohingya people who fled Myanmar to seek shelter in makeshift settlements in Bangladesh. 

Fellowship Reflections for World Refugee Day
By Sarah Allen

I first encountered BRAC during an introduction to international development course in college, where my professor praised it for its dedication to scientific rigor, business acumen, and global south-led solutions. Subsequently, BRAC’s name continued to pop up in my life in various subtle ways: I found it in a textbook; I stumbled upon it in an article in the The Economist.

Only days after I made a cross-country move to New York City, I read an article in The New York Times citing BRAC as one of the key organizations responding to a devastating humanitarian crisis that was, at the time, just beginning to rapidly escalate. As the Myanmar government began a violent new crackdown against the Rohingya, an ethnic minority group residing in its Rakhine State, hundreds of thousands of Rohingya fled over the border and into Bangladesh, where BRAC had been working for over four decades.

I was fascinated by BRAC, but I never imagined that I would one day have the chance to work for the organization. So when I was presented with the opportunity to complete a fellowship with BRAC USA, I jumped at the chance.

Now, as a Hilton Prize Coalition Fellow at BRAC USA, I support BRAC’s work to create opportunities for people around the world by raising awareness and mobilizing resources to support its programs. Working on both the Communications and Business Development teams, I play a joint role and complete projects that range from developing social media content and writing press releases to conducting prospect research on potential funders and supporting relationship management with institutional donors.

But throughout all of these varied projects, my time at BRAC USA has been marked by the Rohingya humanitarian crisis. It’s something that permeates my work every day, whether I am identifying prospective donors who might support our response efforts, conducting digital marketing campaigns to raise awareness about the crisis, or reporting to donors on the latest updates from the field.

Woman and baby

Tahera with her newborn son

As World Refugee Day approaches on June 20th, I have begun to reflect on my time as a Hilton Prize Coalition Fellow, and in particular, how my work has intersected with displaced people around the world. A big aspect of my job is storytelling – communicating the stories of those BRAC serves to our donors, partners, followers, and friends. I come across stories from Cox’s Bazar, the border region of Bangladesh that is now home to over a million displaced Rohingya people living in makeshift settlements, on a daily basis. Recently, the story of a new mother struck me.

Tahera was pregnant with her first child when government forces in Myanmar targeted her community, killing families and burning down homes. Her home was burnt to the ground, forcing her to flee on foot. She ran for two weeks through jungles, mountains, and across the sea before finally arriving in a makeshift settlement in Cox’s Bazar where she gave birth to a healthy baby boy at a BRAC delivery center. Tahera says that her baby traveled more before he was born than she expected him to in his lifetime.

When I learn of stories like Tahera’s, I feel incredibly lucky to play a role, albeit a small one, in supporting families like hers who have been forced out of their homes. And thanks to my time as a Hilton Prize Coalition Fellow at BRAC USA, I have been inspired to continue this work – in fact, following my fellowship, I will join BRAC USA full time as a Communications Associate. In my new role, I will continue to tell the stories of resilient women like Tahera to mobilize awareness and resources to support the programs that are helping families like hers.

I have deeply enjoyed my time as a Hilton Prize Coalition Fellow, and I have gained so much more than I could have imagined from my time working with BRAC USA. I am grateful for the investment that both Hilton Prize Coalition and BRAC USA have made in me from the beginning, and I am so excited to continue to learn and grow as I transition forward.

About The Hilton Prize Coalition
The Hilton Prize Coalition is an independent alliance of the 22 winners of the Conrad N. Hilton Humanitarian Prize, working together to achieve collective impact. Through three signature programs—the Fellows Program, the Collaborative Models Program and the Storytelling Program—the Coalition leverages the resources, talents and expertise of each of its members to innovate and establish best practices that can be shared with the global NGO and donor communities. Working in more than 170 countries, the Coalition is governed by a board comprised of the leaders of the Prize-winning organizations led by an Executive Committee and a Secretariat, Global Impact.

To learn more about the Hilton Prize Coalition, visit prizecoalition.charity.org, or contact prizecoalition@charity.org. Follow the Hilton Prize Coalition on Twitter and LinkedIn, and “Like” us on Facebook.

daisy in wall

International Day for the Elimination of Sexual Violence in Conflict

In 2015, the United Nations General Assembly declared June 19 the International Day for the Elimination of Sexual Violence in Conflict. The Hilton Prize Coalition joins in the effort to shed light on the plight of those suffering from sexual violence in conflict, and call for greater efforts in protection and prevention.

When used in the context of conflict, sexual violence serves as a military or political tactic to subjugate the opposing side. In a report from the UN, the term “conflict-related sexual violence” refers to “rape, sexual slavery, forced prostitution, forced pregnancy, forced abortion, enforced sterilization, forced marriage, and any other form of sexual violence of comparable gravity perpetrated against women, men, girls or boys that is directly or indirectly linked to a conflict.” The victims in conflict are targeted strategically from opposing ethnic, religious or political groups, reflecting a larger war or crisis.

The effects of sexual violence can have a lasting impact on its victims. Victims who are able to return to their homes may be outcastes from their society due to their contact with the enemy. As a result, it destroys families and communities. In the extreme, rape and forced sterilization could eradicate the next generation, an act tantamount to genocide.

The 2018 theme of International Day for the Elimination of Sexual Violence in Conflict draws attention to one of the effects of violence, “The Plight and Rights of Children Born of War.” The theme highlights the struggle of those born from rape, who often struggle with issues of identity and are seen as a child of the enemy. As outcastes of society, they become more susceptible to recruitment and radicalization by terrorist groups. By drawing attention to the struggles of these people, the UN hopes to foster solidarity with the survivors and their children and give them a voice to advocate for their rights.

Women for Women International (WFWI), a member of the Hilton Prize Coalition, was founded to help survivors of sexual violence from conflict in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The organization works to promote the civil rights of women and girls and empowers them to build stronger communities. WFWI cites violence against women and girls as “one of the biggest global challenges in enabling women and girls to the full and equal enjoyment of their rights.” WFWI strives to change the social norms that tolerate violence towards women by educating both men and women on the rights of women and advocating for services for those who are victims.

In 2016, the UN passed a resolution that allows for greater cooperation in systematic monitoring and information-sharing to deter the transnational trafficking of persons. The resolution also affirmed sexual violence as an act of terrorism, calling for global action to prevent sexual violence from being used as a tool in recruitment and radicalization. By holding perpetrators accountable, states can deter future crimes of sexual violence.

For additional information, visit the United Nations International Day for the Elimination of Sexual Violence in Conflict resource page.

About The Hilton Prize Coalition
The Hilton Prize Coalition is an independent alliance of the 22 winners of the Conrad N. Hilton Humanitarian Prize, working together to achieve collective impact. Through three signature programs—the Fellows Program, the Collaborative Models Program and the Storytelling Program—the Coalition leverages the resources, talents and expertise of each of its members to innovate and establish best practices that can be shared with the global NGO and donor communities. Working in more than 170 countries, the Coalition is governed by a board comprised of the leaders of the Prize-winning organizations led by an Executive Committee and a Secretariat, Global Impact.

To learn more about the Hilton Prize Coalition, visit prizecoalition.charity.org, or contact prizecoalition@charity.org. Follow the Hilton Prize Coalition on Twitter and LinkedIn, and “Like” us on Facebook.

Coalition Member Spotlight: HelpAge

For Elder Abuse Awareness Day on June 15, the Hilton Prize Coalition shines a spotlight on Laureate member HelpAge. HelpAge USA is the U.S. affiliate of HelpAge International, a global non-profit dedicated to advancing the wellbeing and inclusion of older people. Through a global network of over 120 partners and affiliates in over 70 countries, HelpAge implements programs and policies that improve the health and livelihoods of older people in poor communities. From getting the rights of older people recognized in global, multilateral agreements to improving healthcare access in small villages, HelpAge works at all levels to ensure everyone who reaches old age can live a healthy, safe, and secure life. HelpAge is the 2012 recipient of the Conrad N. Hilton Humanitarian Prize .

As life expectancy continues to increase in both developed and developing regions, there is a greater need for societies to address elder abuse and neglect. But despite the growing population of older people, awareness of elder abuse remains low. Cultural conceptions of violence and abuse tend to portray victims as young or middle-aged even though 20% of the world’s population is expected to be over the age of 60 by 2050. Older people may not report abuse because of the social stigma attached to it, a stigma that HelpAge works to alleviate as it fights elder discrimination.

Vietnam self help club in Nghe An Province

A HelpAge study on older adults in protracted humanitarian crises found that 1 in 5 had experienced some form of violence. A study in five EU countries found that 28% of women 60 years of age and older reported experiencing some form of abuse in the previous year. This statistic included sexual and physical violence as well as other forms of abuse. The most common perpetrator of this violence is a spouse or intimate partner.

More can be done by governments and multilateral organizations to include older people in human rights protections. Of the 133 countries surveyed in the World Health Organization’s 2014 Violence Prevention survey, only 59% said they have laws to prevent elder abuse, and only 30% said that these were fully enforced.  Existing international human rights laws do not explicitly articulate protecting older women from violence.

To combat age discrimination at the grassroots level, HelpAge developed a campaign called Age Demands Action (ADA). ADA mobilizes local communities to advocate for the rights of older people. The 9th United Nations Open-Ended Working Group on Aging will take place in July at the UN headquarters in New York. HelpAge’s ADA campaigners will advocate for four key areas of rights. These are the rights to autonomy and independence; long-term care and palliative care; equality and non-discrimination; and freedom from violence, abuse, and neglect.

For more information on how HelpAge supports World Elder Abuse Awareness Day and advocates for a UN convention, read this article. To learn more about HelpAge’s health and humanitarian programs, visit their website at www.helpageusa.org

(Photos courtesy of HelpAge USA)

About The Hilton Prize Coalition
The Hilton Prize Coalition is an independent alliance of the 22 winners of the Conrad N. Hilton Humanitarian Prize, working together to achieve collective impact. Through three signature programs—the Fellows Program, the Collaborative Models Program and the Storytelling Program—the Coalition leverages the resources, talents and expertise of each of its members to innovate and establish best practices that can be shared with the global NGO and donor communities. Working in more than 170 countries, the Coalition is governed by a board comprised of the leaders of the Prize-winning organizations led by an Executive Committee and a Secretariat, Global Impact.

To learn more about the Hilton Prize Coalition, visit prizecoalition.charity.org, or contact prizecoalition@charity.org. Follow the Hilton Prize Coalition on Twitter and LinkedIn, and “Like” us on Facebook.

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