Seattle aid org says Central America needs our help

Central America Map
(from Alex Covarrubias via Wikipedia)

The Seattle International Foundation sounded alarm bells about the development situation in Central America at an event on Tuesday, where panelists called for Seattle-based aid organizations like the Gates Foundation to step up activities in the region.

Tom Paulson, from our partner blog Humanosphere was at the Central America Donors Forum and filed this report:

A few decades ago, Seattle’s relationship with Central American nations like El Salvador, Nicaragua or Guatemala was perhaps most defined by this community serving as a haven for refugees in the nationwide sanctuary movement for people fleeing the violence of the civil wars.

On Tuesday, at Microsoft’s Redmond campus, I attended a meeting sponsored by the Seattle International Foundation (one of Humanosphere’s sponsors, I should note) called the Central America Donors Forum which illustrated how much things have changed — and how much still needs to change.

Like most such meetings, this one largely featured people standing up at the lectern talking about what they do. I would argue that you don’t really need a meeting for that. Just tell people to read your website mission statement.

But  further discussion at this all-day confab — which was aimed at creating new collaborations among attendees — did provide, for me anyway, a new insight:

Much of the aid and development community seems to ignore the needs of Latin America.

Read the rest here

Alex Stonehill

Alex is a cofounder and editor of The Seattle Globalist. He's a visual journalist whose work has been published by PBS, The Seattle Times, FRONTLINE/World and the Seattle Weekly.  Alex teaches journalism in the University of Washington's Department of Communication and recently directed the documentary film Barzan.
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