Now that the track events at the London Olympics are in full flow the big question for us sporty types is: how come East Africans dominate middle-distance and distance running?
What can a little-known health project in rural Ethiopia tell us about discrimination in an all-tweeting, celebrity-transfixed society? With a personal resilience, Rich McEachran explains the wider cultural implications of using disfigurement as a cultural metaphor for monstrosity or pity. For 10 years, Project Harar has been helping people with severe facial disfigurements in some of the poorest and most isolated communities in Ethiopia.
Last week, UNFPA hosted the International Obstetric Fistula working group in Maputo, Mozambique. Obstetric fistula is a striking indication of the insufficient maternal health care that exists in some parts of the world; obstetric fistula is a condition in which a fistula (hole/ communication) develops between the vagina (birth canal) and bladder or vagina and rectum as a result of a severe and obstructed labour during childbirth.
Victoria exudes motherhood, even amongst the dank synthetics of Finfine’s old, strip-lit bar. And even now, whilst rain drills the potholed car park outside, in the uncomfortable company of harsh-featured afternoon drinkers and without her daughter, this elegant European transmits a contradictory familial comfort. She is one of those parents so in love with her [...]
For decades Africa has been the problem continent, and the Horn it’s struggling epicentre. Ravaged by leaders unanimously opting for autocratic rule, looted and fractured by base sectarian warfare and economically stifled by unyielding climate change and abusive agriculture mechanisation; Somalia, Ethiopia and Eritrea have monopolised global tragedy for as long as the world has been watching.
“Why do they fight in London?” a homeless man in Addis Ababa asked me this morning, after he realised I was both British and had limited understanding of the local currency’s value. His Manchester United T-shirt, trousers with chimney-sweep ends and obviously second or third hand coat clung to his body in the rain. And [...]
On a damp weekday afternoon in Ethiopia, I am invited to visit the much respected Hamlin fistula hospital. It is almost ten years since I first heard about the Addis Ababa fistula hospital; I was just as inspired then as I am in awe now.
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