GLOBAL VOICES COLUMN ARCHIVE

Giving a voice to the world's most fascinating untold global and social issues.

Could the United Nations make history this year?

There’s another election fraught with gender politics and global consequences, with one candidate braced to become a world leader—and no one is talking about it. This summer, outgoing Secretary General Ban Ki Moon publicly called for his successor to be a woman. In a body of 193 nations, the Secretary General of the United Nations is both...

October 1st, 2016 read more

The Power of Choice

Every day presents us with so many choices, we often take them for granted. Hit the gym for hot yoga, or a spin class? Have a nutritious and responsible kale smoothie, or indulge in a whip cream frappuccino? The choices we make—even the little ones—shape our identities and empower us in our own lives. Now try to picture your life without ...

April 30th, 2016 read more

Water: One of the First Casualties of War

When the people of Aleppo, Syria, turned on their taps in early March, they saw clean, running water for the first time in months. In January, the Islamic State seized the sole water plant that serves the entire city of Aleppo and shut it down, depriving three million people of drinking water. Syrian government forces took back the facility last...

April 15th, 2016 read more

Women on Currency: Why Settle for Just One?

Merna Forster was stunned as she watched Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announce on International Women’s Day that women will be represented on one of Canada’s banknotes again. “After fighting for this for years, it was hard to believe the victory,” the historian and author of 100 Canadian Heroines (Dundurn, 2004) and 100 More Canadian He...

April 9th, 2016 read more

Can Service-Learning Help Troubled Youth?

On any given day in Los Angeles there are more youth behind bars than in all of Canada. Lucas was one of them. At 17, drinking and doing drugs, even hotwiring a car for a joyride, was nothing for Lucas. Last year, police caught him and some friends in a stolen vehicle. Even though Lucas (his name has been changed to protect his identity) was jus...

April 2nd, 2016 read more

Millions suffer in forgotten conflicts

When the Grade 8 class of North Ward Public School in Paris, Ont. graduated last summer, they made their teacher promise to continue educating students about the terrible plight of people in war-ravaged Yemen. “Don’t give up on them, Ms. Connors,” they said to her. North Ward had a pen pal exchange with aid workers and activists in the ...

March 26th, 2016 read more

Record-smashing renewable energy projects

The city of Ouarzazate, Morocco, is no stranger to Hollywood. With scenic desert vistas, Ouarzazate has provided backdrops for Lawrence of Arabia, Gladiator and Game of Thrones. Now Ouarzazate is rolling out the red carpet for the biggest star of all: the sun. Morocco is building the world’s largest solar power plant in Ouarzazate. Already, ha...

March 19th, 2016 read more

Homeless in a bureaucratic system

Rachel faces a gut-wrenching decision: put her own life and her step-daughter’s safety at risk, or live on the streets. Rachel, 55, took her step-daughter, Jessica, 15, with her when she escaped her abusive husband and left her home in rural Ontario. Rachel and Jessica (whose names have been changed to protect their identity) went to a YWCA sh...

March 12th, 2016 read more

Confronting gender violence, International Women’s Day

The catcall came as Brynn Chleirich walked alone through an Ottawa grocery store parking lot. A stranger in his late 30s was leaning against a car, smoking and staring at her. “Hey sweetie, you look pretty badass,” he leered, following up with lewd suggestions. “This has to stop,” Chleirich, a 41-year-old single mother replied, staring b...

March 5th, 2016 read more

The art of dreaming big

When Lance Bucknor stepped hesitantly through the front door of Toronto’s SKETCH art studio he hadn’t finished high school and was living in a shelter. At 22, he was hoping the arts program for homeless youth would offer a creative outlet to vent his angst and pass the time. What Bucknor found was an opportunity and the tools to turn this li...

February 27th, 2016 read more