GLOBAL VOICES COLUMN ARCHIVE

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

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

Child labourers: An effect of syria’s war

Adad’s proud grin shone through the dirt encrusted on his face. Standing in a farm field, he declared, “I am happy because I have become a man. I earn money.” Adad is only a boy. Roughly 10 years old, he is one of hundreds of young Syrian refugees in Jordan who have been forced to work to support their families Many of these children were i...

November 21st, 2015 read more

Syrians are one wave in an ocean of refugees

Abdibasi Ahmed Hussein hasn’t spoken a word in eight years. Not since a cruise missile killed the 14-year-old boy’s father and brother in Mogadishu, Somalia, in 2008. Since then, over half his life has passed in Dadaab, Kenya, the world’s largest refugee camp. Abdibasi’s frustrated mother recently told Canadian journalist Michelle Shephard...

September 12th, 2015 read more

Pen pal project brings Yemen conflict home for students

The Facebook message came from the middle of a war zone. “It’s people like you that give me and so many others hope that we are not forgotten and alone,” wrote Yemeni peace activist Nina Aqlan to Canadian teacher Kathleen Connors and her students. That online exchange is part of a modern-day pen pal project for kids at North Ward Public Sc...

May 2nd, 2015 read more

What happened to #BringBackOurGirls? Was it clicktivism or slacktivism?

One year ago the world stood with a small Nigerian community to demand “bring back our girls.” Today, there may be no one to bring back. Most Canadians had never heard of Boko Haram—a Nigerian radical Islamic militia violently opposed to western education and culture. But in a matter of days they became a household name after abducting 270...

April 11th, 2015 read more

Canadian mission to improve peace, fight corruption

Within minutes of the Haiti earthquake in 2010, Claude Cuillerier risked his life entering collapsed buildings, digging survivors from the rubble with a car jack. Cuillerier is a sergeant in the Montreal police force, and a former volunteer with Canada’s police training mission in Haiti. Since 1989, thousands of Canadian officers like him have v...

January 3rd, 2015 read more

2014 wasn’t exactly a year worth tweeting about

Sports, violence, and Toronto’s Ford brothers. According to Twitter, that’s what intrigued Canadians this year. The 2014 #YearOnTwitter report reveals the 10 news stories most tweeted by Canadians. Six concern sporting events, two cover acts of violence (the Parliament Hill attack and the shooting of three police officers in New Brunswick.) ...

December 22nd, 2014 read more

How do young people end up among the jihadis?

To his friends, Collin Gordon was a “mellow dude” who played volleyball, studied business and threw the best parties at B.C.’s Thompson Rivers University. With the income he earned as a carpenter, Somali immigrant Ali Dirie, 18, he was considering a college education and a career as an x-ray technician. Chris Boudreau describes her son, D...

October 11th, 2014 read more

The world’s 51 million refugees are living in limbo

Clemantine Wamariya went years without taking a shower. Living with the filth and stench was still preferable to risking rape in a refugee camp bathroom. Wamariya was six years old when, fleeing the 1994 Rwanda genocide, she walked through the gates of her first refugee camp, clutching her teenage sister’s hand. It would be six more years befo...

August 25th, 2014 read more

Mia Farrow’s ode to the world’s strongest mothers

Mia Farrow has been to some of the worst places on Earth, and met women who’ve suffered crushing adversity. Her awe was palpable as she described their strength and resilience. “I’ve never met a weak mother,” Farrow said. “Everywhere I see mothers, to whom awful things have been done, who have lost everything. Yet they are willing to f...

May 5th, 2014 read more