In the Field

The following updates are live from GlobalGiving in the Field. Our staff members and volunteers are on site at projects you support – blogging and tweeting to bring you the most current news and feedback.

The Race to Save the Golden Eagle

By Lucius Lee - In-the-Field Representative, Mexico, July 24, 2014 12:53 PM

The Golden Eagle
The Golden Eagle's vast hunting ground

The following is a postcard from Lucius and Sarah, GlobalGiving's In-the-Field Representatives in Mexico, about FMCN's efforts to save the Golden Eagle and its habitat. 

Emblazoned on the Mexican flag is the mythical Golden Eagle – a creature so rare that many Mexicans have only heard about it in legends about their country's birth. It nests high up in the mountains of Coahuila, Mexico, only descending to hunt. Despite that, the eagle’s numbers have been dwindling due to the destruction of its prey’s habitat at ground level. We visited Fondo Mexicano para la Conservación de la Naturaleza (FMCN) in Saltillo and...

An eco-stove that cooks by trapping the sun
An eco-stove that cooks by trapping the sun's heat
Construction on the water catchment system
Construction on the water catchment system

Running to clean water with excited smiles!

By Charissa Murphy - GlobalGiving's In-the-Field Rep in Southeast Asia, July 17, 2014 01:00 AM

the UV water filter system
the UV water filter system

 

The following is a postcard from Charissa Murphy, GlobalGiving's In-the-Field Representative in Southeast Asia, about her recent visit to Splash in Cambodia.

 

Running across the dirt-covered school courtyard, students in weathered uniforms race to the clean water fountain station. Some of the children carry jugs or bottles with them, while others chase more instant heat relief and hydration. Regardless of their size, they leap up in enthusiasm to turn the faucet knobs, feet hanging off the ground and their heads or water jugs completely submerged under the water steam. The excitement for water ripples throughout the campus and in the smiles of each of the children.

 

This clean water at the school serves thousands within the...

using the water system to wash in training school
using the water system to wash in training school
clean water from the filter to pot for cooking
clean water from the filter to pot for cooking
vocational training - yum clean water for bread
vocational training - yum clean water for bread
jugs or cupped hands - both work for clean water!
jugs or cupped hands - both work for clean water!
teachers & community can access filtered water too
teachers & community can access filtered water too

Strength in Peer Understanding to Share Knowledge

By Charissa Murphy - GlobalGiving's In-the-Field Rep in Southeast Asia, July 16, 2014 09:01 AM

warm welcome and introduction from the CSSD staff
warm welcome and introduction from the CSSD staff

The following is a postcard from Charissa Murphy, GlobalGiving's In-the-Field Representative in Southeast Asia, about her recent visit to Cooperation for Social Services and Development (CSSD) in Cambodia, supported by GlobeMed at Rutgers.

Entering the Cooperation for Social Services and Development (CSSD) office was one of the warmest welcomes I have experienced as the In-the-Field Representative in Southeast Asia for GlobalGiving. The entire staff of about 23 people all smiled kindly, greeted me with interest, and joined a large conference table that is part of their open-environment office. Many of the volunteers and staff members were once CSSD target beneficiaries themselves (entertainment workers...

staff team explaining the HIV testing to EWs
staff team explaining the HIV testing to EWs
first up! she helped her peers feel comfortable
first up! she helped her peers feel comfortable
laughing afterwards b/c it wasn
laughing afterwards b/c it wasn't that scary!
ages of some of the EW women being tested
ages of some of the EW women being tested
getting ready for the next group of tests
getting ready for the next group of tests

Programs That Make a Difference- A Visitor's Views

By Charissa Murphy - GlobalGiving's In-the-Field Rep in Southeast Asia, July 16, 2014 09:01 AM

Children practice Thai language in the morning
Children practice Thai language in the morning

The following is a postcard from Charissa Murphy, GlobalGiving's In-the-Field Representative in Southeast Asia, about her recent visit to DEP-DC in Thailand.

Approaching DEP-DC's campus in Mae Sai in northern Thailand, I saw a collection of children with workbooks and engaged questions filling the outdoor classroom area. Although they were on their school's break after the end of the school year, the children and the teacher were studying together for extra help on their Thai language skills. The age ranges of the children varied, and each child had a language workbook suitable to his or her specific language level. I was captured by how engaged they were in practicing, collaborating, and asking the teacher questions when they needed it. It was clear from the beginning...

each student had a workbook based on his/her level
each student had a workbook based on his/her level
students practice Thai language together in the AM
students practice Thai language together in the AM
empty class hallways b/c exams recently finished
empty class hallways b/c exams recently finished

A Safe Place Beyond the Harsh Home Realities

By Charissa Murphy - GlobalGiving's In-the-Field Rep in Southeast Asia, July 16, 2014 09:01 AM

Art release time! Working on stick designs.
Art release time! Working on stick designs.

The following is a postcard from Charissa Murphy, GlobalGiving's In-the-Field Representative in Southeast Asia, about her recent visit to The SOLD Project in Thailand.     

Two of the boys' mother died a few weeks ago. The stepfather completely vanished from the picture afterward, which is apparently not uncommon here. The alcoholic father reappeared. He claimed to be equipped to take care of the children, but The Sold Project expressed many concerns that they will address immediately. They haven't been coming regularly, and when they do they haven't been fed or bathed. They just lost their mother. They need (and deserve) support and love; not neglect.

Though this just happened a few weeks ago, it is typical of many of the children in this area in...

a student & volunteer dance to release her stress
a student & volunteer dance to release her stress
Tawee shares The SOLD Project
Tawee shares The SOLD Project's beginnings & goals
previous activity: make shirts of a dream you have
previous activity: make shirts of a dream you have
Building progress in March, getting there!
Building progress in March, getting there!

AM: Unexpected Crises, PM: Overwhelming Support

By Charissa Murphy - GlobalGiving's In-the-Field Rep in Southeast Asia, July 16, 2014 09:01 AM

baby baskets given to each mother in the program
baby baskets given to each mother in the program

The following is a postcard from Charissa Murphy, GlobalGiving's In-the-Field Representative in Southeast Asia, about her recent visit to Mother’s Heart in Cambodia.

Rocking the baby, his breaths slow, irregular, and almost trapped within him, a terrified grandmother rocked him tightly in her arms as she explained how the baby fell two meters down stairs after an electrical fire erupted in their building the night before. This was not only what I walked in to witness at Mother's Heart at the start of the day, but I also observed the Mother's Heart staff walking into this same crisis as well. Before we even introduced ourselves to one another, the staff's unconditional care and support for the women and families it supports opened in front of me. They immediately...

housing supplies (cleaning product, food, etc.)
housing supplies (cleaning product, food, etc.)
comfortable, clean Mother
comfortable, clean Mother's Heart information area
mother and her healthy newborn (posed for photo)
mother and her healthy newborn (posed for photo)
many baby & housing donations from Mother
many baby & housing donations from Mother's Heart

Street Children Are Tutored as You Narrow the Gap

By Charissa Murphy - GlobalGiving's In-the-Field Rep in Southeast Asia, July 16, 2014 09:01 AM

a tutor spends quality time helping students
a tutor spends quality time helping students

The following is a postcard from Charissa Murphy, GlobalGiving's In-the-Field Representative in Southeast Asia, about her recent visit to the the LIN Center for Community Development in Vietnam.

Admittedly, I didn't know at first what "Narrow the Gap" meant. It became clear after my visit with LIN to one of its recipients of the Narrow the Gap grant funds, along with a visit to its Center for Community Development. The LIN Center is helping to narrow the gap between disadvantaged people in Vietnam receiving the services and support that they desperately need to survive and become self-reliant. Its doing so by granting technical and monetary support to nonprofits that are providing these important services. Selected by the community to receive LIN’s support, the...

students ask for help in different school subjects
students ask for help in different school subjects
oh, hello, future academic superstar!
oh, hello, future academic superstar!
students continued to arrive for help from tutors
students continued to arrive for help from tutors
the help from tutoring improves more than HW help
the help from tutoring improves more than HW help

Keeping Families Together w/ Nutrition and Shelter

By Charissa Murphy - GlobalGiving's In-the-Field Rep in Southeast Asia, July 16, 2014 09:01 AM

milk and rice?! yummm.
milk and rice?! yummm.

The following is a postcard from Charissa Murphy, GlobalGiving's In-the-Field Representative in Southeast Asia, about her recent visit to the Human Development Foundation/Mercy Centre in Thailand.

Smiling faces are plentiful at the Human Development Foundation's (HDF) Mercy Centre in the slums of Bangkok, Thailand. Though the children who attend school and/or live at the Mercy Centre come from harsh environments of poverty, families with alcohol and drug addictions, poor education systems, and even abandonment, it was evident that they find safety, care, and a large family community at the Mercy Centre. 

The Human Development Foundation really focuses on providing the entire community the support it needs to, well, stand on its own feet. The Centre is very...

visiting some children who live & learn at Mercy
visiting some children who live & learn at Mercy
getting ready to prepare a meal for the kids
getting ready to prepare a meal for the kids
John plays "got your nose" with one of the girls
John plays "got your nose" with one of the girls
HDF helps the blind too. these 2 are best friends.
HDF helps the blind too. these 2 are best friends.

Basic Necessities Give Villagers a Reason to Live

By Charissa Murphy - GlobalGiving In-the-Field Rep in Southeast Asia, July 16, 2014 09:01 AM

Two villagers donated land for a school
Two villagers donated land for a school

The following is a postcard from Charissa Murphy, GlobalGiving's In-the-Field Representative in Southeast Asia, about her recent visit to the Trailblazer Foundation in Cambodia.

The basic necessities of life: Food, water, shelter, clothing. Education isn't one of them, but why not? Because if children are hungry, ill from unclean water, or fragile and weak from the environment's forces, their ability to be present and learn is significantly diminished.

This is how the Trailblazer Foundation (TF) began its focus on providing the people in Cambodia with access to water. As surprising as it may be, considering the distances to target villages are not from the highly-touristed Angkor Wat boutique hotels, the same limitations to these basic needs still exists...

Charissa with a villager who has a home garden
Charissa with a villager who has a home garden
Cleaning rocks seems weird until you know why
Cleaning rocks seems weird until you know why
Generations of families learn to love safe water
Generations of families learn to love safe water
Village Fund data collection & refinement
Village Fund data collection & refinement

Do you ever feel limited because of your gender?

By Charissa Murphy - GlobalGiving's In-the-Field Rep in Southeast Asia, July 16, 2014 09:01 AM

staff capacity building on gender roles
staff capacity building on gender roles

The following is a postcard from Charissa Murphy, GlobalGiving's In-the-Field Representative in Southeast Asia, about her recent visit to the Women's Resource Center in Cambodia. 

Do you ever feel controlled or restricted because of your sex, age, education level, or income level? In Cambodia, just as everywhere else in the world, gender roles and societal expectations play a major role. In Cambodia, though, the differences mean that women are beaten down and/or left behind both literally and figuratively. For women, their role entails less access to education, a 1 in 4 chance to be a victim of domestic violence, and earning less income than men while often solely caring for not only her own children, but also extended family and living...

Kate was able to work directly with Sophal
Kate was able to work directly with Sophal
sharing knowledge on roles in other countries
sharing knowledge on roles in other countries
active, engaged learning!
active, engaged learning!
local staff engaged to help further support
local staff engaged to help further support

New Beginnings With A New Roof Over Their Heads

By Lucius Lee - In-the-Field Representative in Mexico, July 09, 2014 10:58 AM

Hard at Work Under the Sweltering Sun
Hard at Work Under the Sweltering Sun

The following is a postcard from Lucius and Sarah, GlobalGiving's In-the-Field Representatives in Mexico, about their experience volunteering with Un Techo Para Mi País 

6:00 A.M. - Half-asleep, our heads bumped vigorously against the car’s windows as we made our way through unpaved roads to Las Vias del Amor, loosely translated into The Pathways of Love. Do not let the name fool you, however. This is a community of tin shacks and stray dogs, located next to an abandoned railway track and a rubbish dump. More surprisingly, this shanty town lies just thirty minutes outside Mexico City.

Sarah and I walked along the dirt road towards the first shack, cautiously avoiding the muddy puddles that had formed from last night’s...

Lucius hammering in the final nails
Lucius hammering in the final nails
Sarah with her team in a completed house
Sarah with her team in a completed house

Tai-chi for pre-schoolers: A unique way of reducing violence

By Lucius Lee - In-the-Field Representative in Mexico, July 09, 2014 10:31 AM

The young pre-schoolers greeting us
The young pre-schoolers greeting us

The following is a postcard from Lucius and Sarah, GlobalGiving's In-the-Field Representatives in Mexico, about Fundación EDUCA Mexico's amazing ethics program for pre-schoolers. 

At 7:30AM in Ixtapaluca, a poor municipality just thirty minutes outside Mexico City by car, the groan of an empty stomach brings young children to the local pre-school. These children love coming to school because it is a safe haven and a welcome respite from the violence and poverty that plagues their society. 

Fundación EDUCA Mexico A.C runs a pilot program called “Universal Education for the Development of Ethics” in which young pre-schoolers begin their mornings with a session of tai chi. It was a rare sight to see...

Meditation Session
Meditation Session
Tai chi in the morning
Tai chi in the morning

GlobalGiving meets the stars of Maison de la Gare!

By Paige Creigh - Champion for Customer Bliss, April 30, 2014 06:04 PM

Some of the boys playing before class
Some of the boys playing before class

Paige is GlobalGiving's Champion for Customer Bliss in our office in Washington, DC. During a trip to Senegal, she had the chance to visit some of GlobalGiving's projects. Here is her postcard from the field. 

I had been in Senegal for 2 weeks and everywhere I went, not matter the size of the city, I met Talibe boys. It breaks your heart to see the kids begging, but even more so how natural it is to miss them. Talibe are part of the Senegalese scenery.

Upon my arrival in Saint Louis, Issa, the charismatic, superhero leader of this project, greeted me and led me to the beautiful haven that is Maison de la Gare. It was just around the time the boys start streaming in from the street, and the home was slowly filling with wrestling, cleaning, and giggling...

The boys learn how to use computers (and facebook)
The boys learn how to use computers (and facebook)
All kids love to pose for the camera!
All kids love to pose for the camera!
Issa shows me where the new building will be built
Issa shows me where the new building will be built
The afternoon drum circle!
The afternoon drum circle!

A GlobalGiving adventure in Kedougou!

By Paige Creigh - Champion for Customer Bliss, April 30, 2014 06:02 PM

Dondo in front of the chaperone
Dondo in front of the chaperone's rooms

Paige is GlobalGiving's Champion for Customer Bliss in our office in Washington, DC. During a trip to Senegal, she had the chance to visit some of GlobalGiving's projects. Here is her postcard from the field. 

After 15 hours in a sept-place from Dakar (7-passenger peugots that are a common form of transportation in Senegal and often carry goats and chickens along with their human passengers), and a blissful night’s sleep, I woke up to meet with Dondo. He is Neighbor Ape’s team member on the ground in Kedougou, Senegal. He is one of the co-founders of OBARAR, the village association working with Neighbor Ape.

Our first stop was the the new dormitory being built! I was lucky enough to have not only the company of Dondo, but also of one of his fellow...

Dondo let
Dondo let's me take a look at the dorm plans
Kids from the community at Primary School
Kids from the community at Primary School
Me visiting the kids staying in Kedougou!
Me visiting the kids staying in Kedougou!

An Oasis of Learning

By Lydia Sorensen - GlobalGiving In-the-Field Representative, April 25, 2014 03:02 PM

Hard at work on homework!
Hard at work on homework!

The following is a postcard from Lydia Sorensen, GlobalGiving's In-the-Field Representative in Guatemala, about her recent visit to Limitless Horizons Ixil

Walking into the Saber Sin Límites Community Library in Chajul, we are immediately greeted with hearty “buenos dias” by a giggling trio of kids clutching library cards. Behind them Marilu (one of the three librarians, all of whom are former scholarship recipients) is working with an older group of girls on a school project. All heads are bent together over the table as they carefully copy out a quote on morales (morals) unto a piece of yellow posterboard. The Chajul library isn’t just a place for children and students though, the whole community is able to take advantage...

Marilu helping with a presentation
Marilu helping with a presentation

Lion Power

By Chi Nguyen - In-the-Field Representative, April 29, 2014 10:43 AM

This postcard is written by Chi Nguyen, our In-the-Field Representative for Southern Africa. Chi will be traveling to the nine countries of Southern Africa, visiting and assisting our current partner organizations.

 

On Wednesday, April 16th, I had the privilege of visiting Global White Lion Protection Trust's several project site locations, a few being a primary school, a creche, and an orphanage. At the first school, we were able to witness a beautiful display of song, dance, and play from the children, demonstrating all that they have learned about the importance of conservation. They showed that we must respect the lives and habitats of the white lion and all of its friends in the kingdom, and they left nothing but smiles on every audience...

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Discipline & Integrity

By Chi Nguyen - In-the-Field Representative, April 21, 2014 11:54 AM

This postcard is written by Chi Nguyen, our In-the-Field Representative for Southern Africa. Chi is traveling to the nine countries of Southern Africa, visiting and assisting our partner organizations, for the first half of 2014.

On Tuesday, April 15th, I had the privilege of visiting Keep the Dream196 in Tzaneen, South Africa, and was pleasantly surprised to witness the immense amount of changes KTD strives to achieve in the community. KTD works with over 2000 kids every week in 65 different villages in Tzaneen. They work to instill physical, social, emotional, and spiritual confidence in the children, with the Children's Rights framework in mind. They strive to lead the children away from alcohol and drug abuse, sexual promiscuity, and other behaviors that may be...

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Fighting for the Unheard

By Chi Nguyen - In-the-Field Representative, April 21, 2014 11:52 AM

This report is written by Chi Nguyen, our In-the-Field Representative for Southern Africa. Chi will be traveling the nine countries of Southern Africa, visiting and assisting our current partner organizations, for the first half of 2014.

 

On Friday, April 11th, my colleague Moeko Shinohara and I had the pleasure of meeting Shayda and her Fundraising Manager to learn all about the ins and outs of Lawyers Against Abuse. We were pleasantly impressed with the way LvAgoes about their mission - with a highly educated and sentitive approach, we coudln't imagine clients of LvA receiving anything but the beset type of care, treatment, and attention. In addition to providing psychosocial support for their clients, they also mediate between all parties in the justice...

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Pitching Your Passion

By Chi Nguyen - In-The-Field Representative, April 21, 2014 11:51 AM

Pitching her passion for her future hair salon
Pitching her passion for her future hair salon

This postcard is written by Chi Nguyen, our In-The-Field Traveler for Southern Africa. Chi will be traveling to the nine countries of Southern Africa over a span of six months, visiting and assisting our current partner organizations.

On Friday, April 11th, I had the privilege of sitting in on one of One Global Economy's MEP (Mobile Entrepreneur Program) Workshops. Although James, OGE's MEP workshop facilitator, had given me the background on the purpose and impact of the workshops previously, I was completely unaware of the powerful and inspiring presentations and conversations that I would bear witness to that day.

The workshop started off with the participants breaking into smaller groups and brainstorming at least five "Challenges Entrepreneurs Face" with their five...

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Music to Our Ears

By Chi Nguyen - In-the-Field Representative, April 21, 2014 10:25 AM

This postcard is written by Chi Nguyen, our In-the-Field Traveler in Southern Africa. Chi will be traveling through the nine countries of Southern Africa for six months, visiting and assisting our current partner organizations.

On Thursday, April 3rd, my colleague Moeko Shinohara and I had the privilege of meeting Annerina Grobbelaar and visitng the project sites of Sound for Silence. It was such a pleasure to meet a project leader who is so wholeheartedly passionate about the work she does, so much so that you can talk about any topic in the world and she will always find a way to reconnect it to the hearing impaired community! Annerina gave us a tour of her well-kept office, the therapy table and Stokke Tripp-Trapp chair for their therapy sessions, and the clinic at...

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On Our Own

By Chi Nguyen - In-The-Field Representative, April 21, 2014 10:23 AM

An SHG in Action
An SHG in Action

This report is written by Chi Nguyen, our In-the-Field Traveler for Southern Africa. Chi will be traveling throughout the nine countries of Southern Africa for six months during the first half of 2014, visiting and assisting our current non-profit organization partners.

Fourteen women in knee-length skirts, white shirts, and blue throwovers gathered together in a rondavel in a homestead three hours outside of Durban, in rural South Africa. They pass a dish around the half-circle they have formed, each of them adding 2 Rand (the equivalent of $0.19 in US currency) to the pot and passing the dish on. Once they have all contributed their dues, they proceed with the meeting, going through the agenda and marking in their personal notebooks as well as the group...

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Light and Energy to Brighten Burma's Future

By Charissa Murphy - GlobalGiving In-the-Field Representative, March 27, 2014 07:46 PM

The following is a postcard from Charissa Murphy, GlobalGiving's In-the-Field Representative in Southeast Asia, about her recent visit to Solar Roots in Myanmar.

Lights. Energy. Heat. Hot water. Cooked food. Clean water. Critical thinking. Preventive maintenance. Knowledge sharing. Experimentation. Community advancement. Sustainability. These are just some of the resulting benefits of the trainings that Solar Roots provides to the communities within Burma, focusing on community sustainability.

Enthusiastic to learn, the 20 participants (monks, monastic teachers, and a few local residents) joined together for a 10 day training with Solar Roots on clay oven building and Photovoltaic solar panel training at a monastery in...

Strong Beginnings for Community Leaders of Burma

By Charissa Murphy - GlobalGiving's In-the-Field Rep in Southeast Asia, April 05, 2014 05:02 AM

Khine & Ma utilizing computers for research
Khine & Ma utilizing computers for research

The following is a postcard from Charissa Murphy, GlobalGiving's In-the-Field Representative in Southeast Asia, about her recent visit to Thabyay Education Network in Myanmar.

Preparing future leaders of Burma, the Exam Preparation Outreach Program (EPOP) helps to get students of Burma ready to study at an international and university level. After spending some time visiting organizations throughout Burma such as Thabyay, the need for programs such as the EPOP is evident. The education system in the country focuses on memorization rather than on critical thinking and research. It is disheartening to pass schools and even homes where students are outside reciting over and over lines that they have to memorize for an upcoming exam. The deafening trance forced upon these...

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Johana

By Lydia Sorensen - GlobalGiving In-the-Field Representative, March 21, 2014 05:10 PM

Johana and Rosa talk with Juan Gabriel
Johana and Rosa talk with Juan Gabriel

The following is a postcard from Lydia Sorensen, GlobalGiving's In-the-Field Representative in Guatemala, about her recent visit to Partners for Surgery.

While no parent ever wants their child to have a birth defect, here in Guatemala what is easily remediable in the United States is potentially deadly. Most children born here in rural communities are delivered by midwives (some of whom have little training) far from hospitals. For the hundreds of children born with cleft lip and palate this means that they are at a much higher risk. Often born to families who have no understanding of the condition, they are unable to breastfeed and sometimes starve to death. By working with the local government and community leaders, Partner for Surgery is working every day to...

Johana and her grandmother
Johana and her grandmother
Johana
Johana's family says goodbye!

Be Well Before You Do Well

By Chi Nguyen - In-The-Field Representative, March 21, 2014 05:13 PM

Packing parcels of life
Packing parcels of life

This postcard is written by Chi Nguyen, our In-The-Field Representative who will be traveling to the nine countries of Southern Africa to meet and work with our partner organizations.

 

On Monday, March 17th, I was privileged to meet Linda van Oudheusden who gave me a grand tour of Missionvale Care Centre and all of its accomplishments thus far - and a grand tour it was! Missionvale Care Centre, 26 years and running, now has quite a few impressive achievements to tout, such as two health clinics on the grounds, an assembly hall for HIV/AIDS support groups as well as community events and recreational activities, a farming project, and a sizable food program for the local impoverished community, just to name a few.

Student volunteers from America were...

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What is it?

GlobalGiving In The Field is a live update feed from our staff and volunteers visiting projects all over the world.

What you see on this page is a special combination of blog posts and live tweets via Twitter.

Interested in becoming an In-the-Field traveler? Learn more.

Where are they now?

Jacqueline Lee is visiting projects in Southeast Asia

Shonali Banerjee is visiting projects in Morocco, Spain, and France

Aliza Appelbaum is visiting projects in Morocco, Spain, and France

Charlene Chan is visiting projects in China

Mari Seto is visiting projects in China

Ellen Currin is visiting projects in Nepal

Shari Davis is visiting projects in Nepal

Spectra Asala is visiting projects in Southern Africa

Images From The Field