Children Become Artists Become Journalists Become Darfur.

You’re fluent in international development, human rights law, medicine, or the arts? That’s amazing! But when it comes to rallying the rest of us, sometimes we need to be sold on the idea in our own native tongue, with strong communication. I was just talking with a co-worker about the need for non-profits to translate … Continue reading

“Happy Halloween” as a Journey

It’s that time of year again: the time of year when everyone eats a ton of crappy, cheap candy and brags about it. And it’s the time of year I become tempted by cynicism. A few years ago, I found out much of our chocolate has a connection to human trafficking in West Africa. It … Continue reading

Ways to Help Central Africa and Countries Affected by the LRA

In response to my recent criticism of Nick Kristof’s Kony2012 column, one commenter asked that I offer up better solutions: I personally would prefer it if “armchair theorists” who have taken Invisible Children to task would also say things like, ‘Although I will not be joining the Kony 2012 campaign, I did make a small … Continue reading

Chocolate and Child Slavery: Ten Years Later

In 2001, Congress attempted to force a slave-free label on all chocolate. In response, major chocolate companies lobbied relentlessly and eventually prevented the regulation. On October 1, 2001, they vowed to end child slavery in their supply chain on their own by 2005, and claimed that doing so via a 4-year plan without government interference … Continue reading

Good News Friday!

This week, good news comes from people whose names start with J. Thanks for these great recommendations, Jess, James and Justin. People whose names start with J are the very, very best. They also share in common a multimedia theme, proving that J’s are technologically savvy and forward thinking. I love J’s. How to Help … Continue reading

Ruined

This weekend I saw Ruined at Arena Stage in DC. I’d been waiting over a year to see this Pulitzer prize winner – ever since I first heard about it, really. Playwright Lynn Nottage wrote the piece after traveling to Africa to interview refugee women who had been victimized by the war in Congo. She … Continue reading

To Libya

Libyan Protesters in DuPont Circle, Washington D.C. / June 2010 For nearly two weeks I’ve been watching with excitement and dread as the Libyan people have fought, bled, and died fighting against their dictatorial regime. I feel a special closeness to the people there, even though we’ve never met and mostly differ in language, religion, … Continue reading

Happy Valentine’s Day, Mr. West

Last week I attended a Valentine’s Day-themed screening of The Dark Side of Chocolate, a documentary on human trafficking in the cocoa industry. I highly recommend you see it if you don’t believe chocolate is made by children, often against their will. At the same time, if you are prone to motion sickness as I … Continue reading

Let Africa’s Children Be Your Valentine

Valentine’s Day is coming up, and to celebrate it slave-free, you might want to plan ahead. Here are a few ways to support the abolitionist movement this February: Get Hershey to do the right thing. This year a lot of anti-trafficking organizations are fighting the chocolate industry by focusing their attention on Hershey. Hershey continues … Continue reading

The African Slave Trade, Suburbia-Style

Cinderella, 1865 It turns out we are still shipping in slaves from Africa to work our estates. And we seem to prefer children. In the United States today, an estimated one-third of trafficking victims work as domestic servants, mostly in suburban neighborhoods. The ones who are children often arrive after being sold in their African … Continue reading

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