I first visited Panamá in 1989 to see my Salvadoran aunt who had started her family there. However, I first experienced Panamá in 1979 as a child in Orange County, California through the loving and inspiring late Panamanian Archbishop Tomás Clavel. Clavel had been exiled to Los Angeles in the 1970’s after a change in the Panamanian government, where he spent his remaining years uplifting countless people, including my own family.
Since 1960, the United Nations dubs each year a new topic that deserves international awareness or appreciation. In 2015 we celebrated the International Year of Soils, and this year, the United Nations has declared 2016 the International Year of Pulses!
Last summer, Colorado-Minas Gerais Partners launched “Improve Your English,” a teacher exchange program for English teaches in Colorado and Brazil. Improve Your English initially brought four Brazilian middle school English teachers to Greeley, CO, where they lived with homestays and took classes at a local community college. This past summer, it was Colorado's turn to send one American English teacher to Diamantina, Brazil. The chapter had just the candidate.
“Farmer-to-Farmer puts a face on U.S. foreign assistance,” the Honorable Douglas Bereuter, former Member of Congress and Farmer-to-Farmer founder, remarked to the room of staff and volunteers who had gathered to celebrate the program’s 30th Anniversary in Washington D.C on Dec. 3.
What a week for climate and energy!
We at the Energy and Climate Partnership of the Americas (ECPA) Senior Fellows Program have been anticipating the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in Paris (COP21) all year. As you may know, world leaders, decision-makers, businesses, and activists have gathered in Paris for COP21, running from November 30 – December 11. The event has been the subject of high media scrutiny, as a select group decides the future of our planet for the rest of us.
Happy International Volunteer Day to all volunteers! If you are a volunteer, take today to celebrate yourself as the world recognizes your selfless contributions and expertise. Here at Partners of the Americas, we know our work is solely made possible because of their efforts. You are what make change possible. We THANK YOU endlessly!
Jamie Rocha, Director of Sport Strategy at GlideSlope, served as a mentor during a Partners of the Americas Sport for Community (S4C) program to several Brazilian emerging leaders in the sport for development field. In September 2015 she traveled to Rio de Janeiro through Partners' S4C program to work one on one with emerging leader Gabi Pinheiro and her organization, Luta Pela Paz (Fight for Peace). What follows are some of her reflections from the trip.
The word “miraculous” gets thrown around rather casually in sports, whether it’s for a difficult catch in an NFL end zone, or a dramatic three-point buzzer beater that wins an NBA playoff game. But sometimes real miracles are accomplished through sports, with little fanfare, in out-of-the-way places, and with outsized benefits that should get just as much attention but dont.
Between plant disease, pests, and changing weather, farmers face more than enough challenges related to growing, harvesting and producing their crops. Once the crop has been collected, there is another set of problems for farmers to address in order for them to sell their goods-ones that require a whole host of management skills that many small farmers lack.
It has been very rewarding for me to have supported the Youth Ambassadors Program as a Coordinator in 2014 and 2015. Rewarding, not only because I've had contact with youth who participated in the program and traveled, but because the program is a great means for young people, who see the Youth Ambassadors Program as an opportunity to dream and think that dreams can come true if they take initiative, focus on their performance, and serve in their communities. The program recognizes that all young people are talented and wants to give them opportunities to travel, share their culture, improve their English, and to attend American schools, opening their minds to a new world. It also wants to help them in building their capacity as community leaders through training workshops on leadership skills and development projects, which are carried out in Washington and reinforced with visits to social projects across the U.S.
Happy Thanksgiving from Partners of the Americas! As the holiday season gets underway, Partners wants you know how thankful we are for the key role you play in this community. Whether it be volunteering your time and expertise, spreading the word about Partners to your communities, or the countless other ways people contribute to Partners, our work is possible because of the people involved.