Writing Samples

United Nation's Africa Renewal Magazine, January 2010

To Save the Lives of Mothers, Infants

Commitment, money and innovation can reduce high mortality rates

Development Goals (MDGs) there is some good news. Rwanda is very likely to meet the MDG targets for child and maternal mortality, and will possibly be one of few countries in Africa to surpass them by the 2015 deadline. That is all the more remarkable given Rwanda’s painful history of genocide, which left the economy of that small nation in tatters and its society in complete disarray.   Read more -->

United Nation's Africa Renewal Magazine,  April 2008

Enlisting Men for Women's Equality

South African initiatives against sexual violence, gender inequality


When an older man raised his hand to speak on the third day of a gender workshop in Hoedspruit, a rural community in northern South Africa, Bafana Khumalo’s heart sank. As the facilitator of the workshop, which specifically targeted men, he had already touched on concepts of manhood and how gender inequality contributed to the sky-rocketing HIV rates in South Africa.

Mr. Khumalo worried that the participant would deliver a lecture on how equality between men and women is contrary to African culture or how women’s empowerment is dividing families. Older men are deeply respected in rural communities, and he knew this man had the ability to derail the workshop.  Read more -->

United Nation's Africa Renewal Magazine,  April 2008

RWANDAN WOMEN: Aids Therapy beyond Drugs

Food and hope are essential to survive

For Grace and her daughter Juliette, the anniversary of the April 1994 Rwanda genocide means one thing: they have lived with HIV for a dozen years, and their disease has progressed to AIDS. Grace was among the estimated 250,000 women who were raped at the time and is one of the untold numbers of women who were infected with HIV as a result. Juliette, now eight years old, is also infected.

Until recently Grace was living in abject poverty, trying to cope with the stigma associated with being HIV-positive and with the daily worry that there would be no one to look after Juliette after her early death.  Read more -->

African Activist Archive,  February 1990

Mozambique:  Sadly Revisited

The two pieces on Mozambique by Judith Marshall and Otto Roesch in November 1989 were timely indeed.  Hard reading I found, but hard because they struck a tone and a reality that resonated with my own recent visit — alas only for two weeks — to Mozambique.   It was the shortest visit I have made since I began traveling regularly to that country ten years ago.   It was also without doubt the most depressing and sobering.  Did I get it all wrong I wondered as I came back to New York and spoke of my impressions and experiences?   Read More -->

Southern Africa Front Line Focus, May/ June 1991

a new life in Mozambique

Maputo - “by the end of the decade against underdevelopment,” the young district responsavel for communal villages told me, “all the people of our district will be living in communal villages.”  The young responsavel was refereeing to the government’s recently declared national development plan.  

We were sitting on a high plateau over-looking a spectacular vista of rolling hills and open bush country in the district of Mossuril, Nampula province in the north of Mozambique.  Rows of neat mud-brick houses lined a wide thoroughfare to the side of our group, marking the center of Vida Nova (The New Life) communal village.  Read more-->