Jewelry Brands That Give BackEvery day, people around the globe wear jewelry to either symbolize a personal significance or to complete any outfit. Whether it is worn as an accessory or to make a statement, jewelry has been around for centuries. There are thousands of jewelry brands in the world, but only a small fraction of them give back to people in need. This article will focus on five jewelry brands that give back to exploited women and children in need.

5 Jewelry Brands That Give Back

  1. Half United– Siblings, Christian and Carmin Black founded Half United back in 2009 as a way to merge their passion for fashion and philanthropy. Using recycled bullet castings, Half United’s unique jewelry designs empower consumers to fight against hunger. Each product purchased creates seven meals for a child in need. At the end of each month, Half United divides the number of meals raised equally between their local and global partners. One of their global partners is Elevating Ministries, which feeds more than 5,000 students a day. In the past eight years, Half United has supplied over 800,000 meals for children in need.
  2. AccountABLE- After witnessing the hardships Ethiopian women endured in extreme poverty, Barrett Ward was on a mission to end generational poverty when he created AccountABLE. The organization presented women with an alternative opportunity that would provide them with a living while empowering them out of poverty. Women in Ethiopia, Mexico, Peru and the U.S. create items from handmade jewelry to footwear. AccountABLE is one of the few companies that have published their wages. By making their worker’s wages public, AccountABLE is hoping other companies will do the same and realize the difference between minimum wage and a living wage.
  3. Akola – Akola is a local Ugandan dialect that translates to “she works”. Each piece of jewelry is handcrafted by women across East Africa and the U.S. Akola employs women who care for an average of 10 dependents. Through their nonprofit partners, Akola Project and Akola Academy, the organization creates jobs for women in unstable situations in both East Africa and the U.S. They create a community to assist, teach and empower women to become self-sufficient and free from poverty. Akola is not only helping women but also the environment through upcycling Karatasi beads, horn and natural raffia.
  4. PURPOSE Jewelry- For the past 11 years, PURPOSE Jewelry has been helping and employing young women around the world who have been rescued from human trafficking. Every stage of production involves one of these women and enables them to earn a living, learn valuable skills and gain a sense of security. Each handcrafted piece of jewelry includes the artisan’s signature, forever connecting her story of hope to the consumer. With each purchase, a portion of the proceeds goes toward their nonprofit, International Sanctuary. International Sanctuary provides women with education, health care and counseling. In the past year, they have provided over 9,600 hours of professional training and nearly 3,800 hours of education and tutoring.
  5. Starfish Project- The Starfish Project provides care for exploited women in Asia through its social enterprise of handcrafting jewelry and Holistic Care Programs. The Holistic Care Programs provide women with career training, healthcare, counseling, safety and education grants for children. Each month, the Starfish Project serves over 400 women by making weekly visits to local brothels. These visits provide women with medical services, education and even birthday celebrations. Nearly 150 women have been employed by the Starfish Project with thousands more participating in their Community Outreach Services. One hundred percent of the proceeds are reinvested into the Starfish Project’s mission of restoring hope to women and girls.

These five jewelry brands that give back are more than just selling accessories, they are helping those in need. These five jewelry brands give women back their freedom and give children back their childhood.

– Emily Beaver
Photo: Flickr

Orphans in Zimbabwe

The landlocked country of Zimbabwe in southern Africa is known for its diverse wildlife and sprawling, gorgeous landscapes. What many might not be aware of is the crisis taking place within the country. Young children and those under the age of 18 are the sole providers of their households because of circumstances causing them to become orphans. The 10 facts about orphans in Zimbabwe listed below demonstrate the severity and seriousness of this issue taking place in this diverse and culturally rich country.

10 Facts about Orphans in Zimbabwe

  1. HIV/AIDS contributes largely to the number of orphans.
    In Zimbabwe, there are more than 1.3 million orphaned children, and HIV/AIDS is the culprit. According to the National AIDS Council (NAC), over 50,000 households are headed by children under the age of 18 who have lost parents to this deadly infectious
  2. Children are born with HIV/AIDS.
    Adults and parents are not the only victims of HIV/AIDS. This infection can also be passed from mother to child by way of pregnancy, delivery or breastfeeding. In fact, 180,000 children were born with it. As a result, these children are highly vulnerable, and often face social prejudice.
  3. Orphans can go to next of kin, but that is not always an option.
    Traditionally, those orphaned in Zimbabwe are taken in by kin living in surrounding areas. This kin often involve aunts, uncles and grandparents of the orphaned children. Because of the destruction of families that HIV/AIDS causes, this network system is under severe pressure. It is predicted that between the years of 2020 to 2030, orphaned Zimbabwean children will not only have to deal with the loss of their parents but also will not have support from grandparents or other family members.
  4. Many run away after becoming orphaned.
    In an Evaluation Report completed by UNICEF in 2001 concerning orphans and other vulnerable children in Zimbabwe, it was reported that children dealing with AIDS in some form of their life were highly mobile. This means that nearly 50 percent of children had
    left their homes after the death of their parents. They headed for rural areas to ease hardships involved with living in the urban areas of Zimbabwe. Many children in this study ran away, never to be heard from again.
  5. Their education is poor.
    Education of those orphaned in Zimbabwe is lacking and in dire need of improvement. Adequate education in Zimbabwe for orphaned children is not easily accessible. Orphaned children, especially young adolescent girls, are often unable to regularly attend school. These children are missing out on key skills needed to be a functioning member of society, as education is considered a “social vaccine.”
  6. Poverty is certain.
    In addition to the loss of parents, many orphaned children struggle with extreme poverty. Poverty is destructive to all children of Zimbabwe and the world, but it is especially devastating to orphans under the age of 18 who have become the head of their household. They are exposed to a multitude of risks. These risks include poor health, poor educational opportunities, delays in development and a lack of emotional or social support.
  7. Many are not given a birth certificate which prevents them from accessing education and health care.
    In Zimbabwe, a high amount of children never receive a birth certificate. As a result, it becomes close to impossible to secure a spot in any school. This reduces their chances of adequate and sustainable education. In addition to this, never receiving a birth certificate can make seeking medical attention, especially for orphans living with HIV/AIDS, extremely challenging.
  8. Pathways offers services specifically for orphans in Zimbabwe.
    In July of 2018, USAID announced the launch of Pathways. The program was designed to provide nutrition, health and psychosocial services for orphaned and vulnerable children in Zimbabwe. This five year, the $35 million program will provide support and offer services to 250,000-HIV/AIDS infected orphans and 59,500 households of Zimbabwe.
  9. There are programs dedicated to keeping families together.
    SOS Children’s Villages in Zimbabwe has been one of the leading organizations offering support for orphans since 1983. Goals and the work of SOS Children’s Villages are working to support and strengthen families by providing necessities and ensuring that they stay together. If families are unable to remain together, SOS Children’s Villages can place vulnerable children into SOS families. Additionally, SOS Children’s Villages in Zimbabwe also works by way of providing education and advocacy.
  10. CAMFED is helping young orphan girls gain educational opportunities.
    CAMFED Zimbabwe, an organization launched in 1993, has been working tirelessly to increase educational opportunities for orphaned female adolescents in Zimbabwe. By providing scholarships for poor girls in rural areas, building hostels to shorten long distances girls must walk to school (walks are dangerous and tedious for young girls), chances for academic success for young women in Zimbabwe is improved and attainable. Nearly 104,000 young, orphaned girls have been given secondary scholarships by CAMFED Zimbabwe.

Improvements Are Still Needed

Overall, the 10 facts about orphans in Zimbabwe listed above are important in understanding the severity and prevalence of this issue in Zimbabwe. Though many vulnerable children have been supported by a variety of organizations dedicated to orphans in Zimbabwe, a significant amount of work is still needed to truly relieve the burden that orphans in this country must take on.

– Anna Giffels
Photo: Flickr

Starkey Hearing Foundation Empowers Patients in El SalvadorFour-hundred and sixty-six million people worldwide are affected by hearing loss. While this figure does include the occasional grandpa, the majority of those affected live in low and middle-income countries. In developing nations, it is uncommon for hearing disabled children to be enrolled in school or for hearing disabled adults to find employment. The Starkey Hearing Foundation is working to change this, and here’s how. 

So the World May Hear

William F. Austin started the Starkey Hearing Foundation in 1984 for one simple reason: So the World May Hear. The foundation has followed this mission for over 30 years through collaboration with NGOs, governmental agencies and health leaders in more than 100 countries. While much of the work that the Starkey Hearing Foundation does is in service delivery, combating hearing loss also requires education and advocacy efforts. By providing services in each of these categories, the foundation has been able to deliver 1.9 million hearing aids across the globe.

Providing Life-Changing Equipment

While the majority of those who are hearing disabled live in the developing world, less than 3 percent of them can afford or have access to hearing health care. The Starkey Hearing Foundation’s solution to this problem goes beyond simply putting a bandaid over the wound. Their model is community-based, creating sustainable hearing healthcare through local teams and partnerships.

First, the foundation identifies an area in need. After local health workers are educated and trained, then communities begin to receive hearing aids. During this phase, the foundation also works to educate patients and their families and communities about hearing health care. Monthly aftercare services are provided at a central location that also offers free repair and replacement for damaged hearing aids. Finally, the foundation works to foster self-reliance in their patients by employing speech-language pathologists to track the progress of those who have received aid. The follow-up that this model provides ensures that impoverished people who are affected by hearing loss can continue to have access to the care they need for the rest of their lives.

How Individuals Can Help

The Starkey Hearing Foundation’s “Hear Now” program is a recycling initiative that makes it easy to get involved by donating old hearing aids, or even parts of old hearing aids. This program collects about 60,000 hearing aids per year which are then restored and redistributed to those who need them most.

If you don’t have a hearing aid or know anyone who does, you can still get involved by visiting the Starkey Hearing Foundation’s donation page. The page is extremely user-friendly and includes a guide showing what a given donated amount of money can do. For example, a $20 donation can provide one mold for a hearing aid, and a $70 donation will pay for a hearing aid replacement.

– Ryley Bright
Photo: Flickr

Benefits of Needle-Free VaccinesThere are many different methods of non-traditional vaccines or needle-free vaccines that are being produced and becoming more available every day. For example, these include dry powder vaccines or patches. Most notable are jet injectors. Jet injectors use a large amount of pressure and fluid to breach the skin in a very fast motion. These vaccines are effective for usage in countries with extreme poverty because traditional vaccines need to be refrigerated. They also require a way to keep needles sterile. These five benefits of needle-free vaccines detail on how to solve these problems and more.

Five Benefits of Needle-Free Vaccines

  1. Jet Injectors Have Been Around for a Long Time: Jet injector technology might sound new, but it’s not as new as one would think. These kinds of shots were administered back in World War II. In fact, they were actually used through the 1980s until it was discovered that they were spreading diseases. This was due to the fact that the technology hadn’t been developed enough. Until it could be, the jet injectors had to stop being used. Now they have made jet injectors to be single-use, so there is no risk of spreading diseases between patients.
  2. They Require Fewer Resources: Jet injectors have been the most popular method of needle-free vaccines as they tend to use far less of the actual vaccine. This is arguably one of the most important benefits of needle-free vaccines. Jet injectors use up to 60 percent less vaccine than traditional needle vaccines. This is particularly helpful when there are shortages. Because jet injectors use a significantly less amount of the vaccine, it is also a cheaper option. For instance, the cost is $3-4 per vaccine or even $900 for 500 vaccines.
  3. They Are Less Painful: Another problem with the traditional vaccine is that it can cause pain in patients. This can become especially difficult when patients need multiple shots. Furthermore, those who fear needles are less likely to get a vaccination. On the pain scale, a pain score of three is when a person indicates that they are in some pain. This is important to know because when 100,000 subjects were given the jet injection, they had a pain score of zero. This painless injection allows for an alternative to the needle as it can easily administer multiple shots without pain. Lower pain scores are one of the key benefits of needle-free vaccines, as they allow the device to reach the broadest swath of patients possible.
  4. Less Risk of Injury After Disposal or Use: Needlestick injuries are another key problem with traditional vaccines. Needlestick injuries are injuries that happen when a needle accidentally penetrates the skin. The people that are exposed to these injuries are people who work with and around needles. Additionally, this can also happen to people like garbage-men when needles are not disposed of properly. When this kind of injury happens, they can transmit: HIV, Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C and AIDS. With the invention of jet injections, the risk of these injuries is reduced to nearly impossible as these injections need intense pressure to be administered.
  5. They Are More Efficient: The reason these jet injectors were being used in wars was that they are a faster and more efficient way of administering vaccines. Now that the technology has advanced over the last 70 years, these injections are less painful, more sanitary and now even faster. The injection lasts 1/10th of a second. It’s actually so fast that patients can barely feel it. This is helpful for those people in countries with extreme poverty as they are able to administer a lot of vaccines in a short amount of time.

With these benefits of needle-free vaccines, it’s clear this is the direction that the world should be headed in. They are cost-effective, sanitary, fast and nearly painless. As a result, access to vaccines could be provided to third-world countries at a more effective and reliable rate as they don’t need refrigeration and clean water.

– Ian Scott
Photo: Flickr

Trauma Care in Developing CountriesThe field of injury and trauma care in developing countries is severely neglected, as injuries are predicted to account for 20 percent of all ill-health in the world by 2020. In fact, injuries cause 5 million deaths a year — more than HIV/AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis combined. Of these deaths, more than 90 percent of them occur in developing low – and middle- income countries. Thus, injuries contribute to the ongoing cycle of poverty in countries that lack equipt health care systems and preventative measures. However, despite the urgency, injury prevention research in developing nations is currently underfunded.

Causes of Trauma and Injury in Developing Nations

A significant portion of injuries in developing nations is caused by road traffic crashes. In fact, road traffic crashes are predicted to be the fifth leading cause of death by the year 2030. Road-related injuries leave children particularly vulnerable — as the WHO estimates that road traffic injuries are the leading cause of death in 10–19-year-olds, globally and that low-income and middle-income countries account for 93 percent of child road traffic deaths.

The high rate of road traffic crashes only strengthens the cycle of poverty within households. In fact, a survey showed that 28 percent of rural Ghanian households had to decrease food consumption when a member was injured in a road crash.

The prevalence of road injuries also hinders national economic development. As a result of road injuries, low- and middle-income nations are estimated to be drained of $65 billion dollars a year — all of which could go towards the economic development of these nations.

Road traffic, though the most prevalent, is just one cause of injury-related death. Others include homicide, suicide, drowning and death by way of natural disaster.

Emergency Care Systems in Developing Nations

An effective emergency care system consists of three components — care in the community, care during transportation and care upon arrival to a health facility. Care in the community has much to do with prevention and the early recognition of an injury. Many individuals lack the skill or training to recognize early signs of medical emergencies. In fact, in Zimbabwe, a significant number of maternal deaths is caused by avoidable factors that went unrecognized by health workers.

A further barrier to emergency care treatment is lack of transportation, which may arise due to a variety of factors such as lack of vehicles or faulty roads.

Such problems can delay emergency care and impact the health of patients severely. In fact, according to the WHO, studies of fatal childhood illness in Guinea-Bissau and the United Republic of Tanzania showed a high attendance rate at health facilities before child death. One of the reasons for these fatal outcomes is the late arrival of sick children to the hospital.

Additionally, health care facilities across the globe differ with respect to equipment, resources and staff. In 2006, the WHO estimated that a combined 57 countries had a shortage of 2.3 million medical professionals — including physicians, nurses and midwives. The organization also reported that 41 out of 135 countries do not have at least one computer tomography device per million habitants.

Such lack of resources contributes to the high death of injury patients in developing nations.

Examples of Progress: Improving Trauma Care in Developing Countries

  • Increased Awareness: 85 percent of disasters and 95 percent of disaster-related deaths occur in the developing world yet only 1 percent of disaster-related publications cover these regions. However, two groups of researchers, from Tanzania and Nigeria are blazing the field of trauma research in the developing world and are now published in the Scandinavian Journal of Trauma, Resuscitation and Emergency Medicine.
  • Preventive Measures: More precautions are being taken in the developing world in order to prevent injuries from happening in the first place. For example, more safety interventions, such as speed bumps and roundabouts, have been successfully implemented in selected low-income countries.
  • Funding: While the field of trauma and injury care in the developing world has historically been underfunded, progress is being made. Governments around the world continue to recognize the critical importance of funding health intervention in times of emergency. In fact, Japan has recently provided a contribution of $22 million to the WHO’s Contingency Fund for Emergencies.

The current state of trauma and injury care in developing nations can be improved through proper planning and targeted efforts to establish community health care, emergency transportation and the improvement of health care facilities. With the help of nations and organizations, the death toll of trauma and injury patients in developing nations can be drastically reduced.

– Shreya Gaddipati
Photo: Flickr

10 Facts About the Cycle of Poverty
Poverty and homelessness spread throughout the world, despite efforts being made to alleviate these issues. Social psychology studies explain factors that contribute to the cycle of poverty, as well as what to focus to prevent them. Below are 10 facts about the cycle of poverty for consideration.

10 Facts About the Cycle of Poverty

  1. Homeless and poor people often elicit a neural reaction of disgust, according to fMRI studies conducted by looking at brain activity. These studies were done by psychologists Lasana Harris and Susan Fiske. This creates a process of dehumanization. These outgroups (i.e. impoverished persons) are considered to experience different complex human emotions, which feeds into acceptance of poverty. People in poverty can be viewed as responsible for their situation and not being “as human” as more privileged people, Harris and Fiske found.
  2. In a certain way, media attempts to humanize these people by giving personal stories of homelessness or poverty. However, this has a backfiring effect. Media over-exposes human suffering to the point of desensitization, leading citizens to ignore it and decrease caring attitudes, according to studies conducted by psychologists Elizabeth Paluk, Eldar Shafir, and Sherry Wu.
  3. Most poverty alleviation methods focus on only one factor, such as income per capita. However, poverty should be assessed not only by economic factors, but social, moral and political as well. “The use of income alone draws policy attention away from the underlying causes of poverty and processes that perpetuate poverty and obscures the social and health dimensions of poverty,” social psychologists Parthiban Gopal and Nor Malina Malik stated.
  4. Evaluating poverty in Malaysia, Gopal and Malik found out that women who escaped poverty relied on herself, planned long term, took risks, used her resources and was courageous about trying new ventures and possibilities to make life better. Programs should not just provide aid for those in need but should facilitate mechanisms of self-reliance that teach people in poverty ways to take risks and use their resources to escape the cycle, according to Gopal and Malik.
  5. The cycle of poverty perpetuates disease due to inaccessibility to resources and poor living environments, that in turn perpetuates the cycle of poverty due to inability to work and costs of treatments.  According to Health Poverty Action, diarrhea, pneumonia and malaria account for nearly half of all child deaths globally. These are very treatable diseases but are often life-threatening in impoverished areas.
  6. Health Poverty Action (HPA) is a global project that strives to relieve health issues in impoverished countries. In Ethiopia, 7,412 women were able to access government health services in the areas this organization works. This represents an increase of 38 percent since the start of the project in 2016. In Nambia, for example, HPA facilitated a 55 percent reduction of multi-drug resistant tuberculosis cases compared to 2016.
  7. According to Gopal and Malik, the main causes of urban poverty were the low level of education, lack of job opportunities, large family size and lack of access to social facilities. Organizations such as the HPA, that are providing more health, reproductive and education access to these impoverished areas can help break this cycle.
  8. The lack of jobs in rural poor environments causes the poor to migrate to urban areas in hope of finding jobs, furthering perpetuating urban poverty. Therefore, policies should focus on creating more employment opportunities in rural areas as well.
  9. The World Bank is partnering with China, where employment opportunities have been flourishing, to promote job creation and economic development in struggling countries. They work with developing countries’ governments to advise them in creating a better economy and society for the poor, according to Axel van Trotsenburg, Vice President of Development Finance.
  10. Climate change also gravely affects impoverished countries. In Africa, where the years of life lost to climate changes are predicted to be 500 times higher than in Europe, two-thirds of the workforce work in agriculture. However, countries can adapt to this by reducing their emissions and promoting a more sustainable way of living. HPA suggests wealthy countries, like the U.S., need to step up and set an example for developing countries.

These 10 facts about the cycle of poverty can improve understanding of this important issue. It is important to understand humans unconscious bias of dehumanization towards impoverished people so that they can consciously change it.

In order to reduce poverty, solutions must focus on the multi-dimensional causes of poverty. It is also vital to examine examples of people who have escaped the poverty cycle. Projects like HPA are facilitating much positive change by increasing accessible health services and reducing poverty in countries around the world. With a greater focus on sustainable living and more funding for programs like HPA, organizations can combat the global poverty cycle.

Anna Power

Photo: Flickr

How One Organization is Ending Clubfoot in Developing Countries
Around the world, children are being born with congenital anomalies such as clubfoot every day, and many children in developed countries will receive simple treatments. However, in the developing world, children often have to live with an untreated clubfoot that will present intense challenges throughout their lives such as discrimination, neglect, poverty and even abuse. A company called MiracleFeet is changing the lives of children with clubfoot and offering cost-effective treatments to end clubfoot in developing countries.

What is Clubfoot?

Clubfoot is a deformity that affects 100,000 babies a year and is one of the most common birth defects globally. It is easily identifiable in infants and causes one or both feet to twist inward, which eventually causes the child to walk on his or her ankles. This occurs in fetuses who have abnormal developments in their tendons, bones and muscles, specifically in their legs and Achilles tendons.

In poorer countries, a shocking 80 percent of clubfoot cases are untreated, resulting in lifelong disabilities. It is unknown what causes clubfoot, but genetic problems may be one factor. This birth defect has been recorded throughout history and has most commonly occurred if a parent had a clubfoot. It is also more common in boys.

If an infant in a developed country is suspected of having clubfoot, it can be identified using an ultrasound. Generally, this condition had been treated by surgeries that greatly diminish the quality of life for these patients, especially in the developing world where victims have little access to proper treatment.

The Ponseti Method and MiracleFeet

The Ponseti Method is a great alternative to painful clubfoot surgeries that decrease the patient’s quality of life. This method has a 95 percent success rate, is low-cost and fairly simple. Instead of performing surgery, the child’s foot is manually aligned into its proper place using a variety of casts. In some cases, the procedure is successful within 20 days.

Treatment is supposed to start within a week of the infant’s birth when tendons are more elastic and correction for clubfoot is easiest. However, this method has also been used on older kids with some reporting that people can be successfully treated up to age 16.

MiracleFeet was founded by parents whose children suffered from clubfoot. This nonprofit is using The Ponseti Method to transform the lives of children born with clubfoot in developing countries all over the world. Its belief that healthy children add social, cultural and economic growth to their communities has fueled the organization’s desire to end this curable disability.

MiracleFeet partners with local healthcare services in developing nations to provide low-cost treatment and support for families affected by this deformity. They also provide innovative braces for children suffering from clubfoot to wear at night after receiving treatment.

They are determined to improve the health of these children who are living with a curable disability. MiracleFeet has already been successful in 25 countries, helping over 31,000 children at an average cost of $250 a child. Its current goal is to help 50,000 children by 2019.

MiracleFeet’s Work in Nepal

MiracleFeet has helped many nations throughout Africa, Central and South America and Asia. Nepal is one country that has been touched by this organization. In 2004, Nepal had one clinic that practiced The Ponseti Method, The Hospital and Rehabilitation Center for Disabled Children (HRDC). This is still the leading provider of The Ponseti Method, having treated 3,721 children in its first ten years.

In June 2014, MiracleFeet opened The Lahan Clubfoot Clinic, one of their four clinics in Nepal. The Lahan Clinic is a joint operation between HRDC and MiracleFeet and was able to help almost 40 children within two months of opening. Now, MiracleFeet has helped 1,016 children in Nepal and is determined to keep working in the country.

MiracleFeet is not alone in its fight to combat clubfoot. It is also part of The Global Clubfoot Initiative (GCI) established in June 2017. The GCI envisions a world where no child suffers from clubfoot. Their Run Free 2030 program has a goal of providing at least 70 percent of children with clubfoot in developing countries access to treatment. They are working to provide education about clubfoot and support of The Ponseti Method all around the world.

With organizations like MiracleFeet and The Global Clubfoot Initiative providing greater access to treatment for children with clubfoot, it is possible to envision a world free of this disability in the future.

– Alexandra Eppenauer

Photo: Flickr

It is no secret that health care in developing countries is abysmal. Inhabitants in these countries suffer from unclean water, poor sanitation conditions and a high risk of contracting infectious and severe diseases. In the 1970s, the World Health Organization set a goal to have universal health care across the globe by the year 2000. It is now 2017, and that goal is nowhere near being achieved. Much of the disparity centers on health inequities between and within countries, especially in those less developed.

Low-income countries not only suffer from a lack of technology and education, but they also lack in the number of skilled professionals working in communities, where the result is people dying from treatable diseases like diarrhea. Another problem is that little research and development is conducted on diseases that affect such areas. Most global research spending on health care goes toward the prevention and curing of diseases suffered in the developed world, leaving little behind for developing countries.

This being said, there has been a recent shift towards bringing health care to developing countries. First, the United Nations acknowledged the health disparities and the lack of health care systems. To resolve these disparities, the Millennium Development Goals were created, with the Sustainable Development Goals following close behind. Each set of goals attempts to improve health care in less-developed countries using the resources available to the world’s more-developed nations. Strategies were formulated under the belief that “leaders in health care have an important stewardship role across all branches of society to ensure that policies and actions in other sectors improve health equity.”

The global health care crisis comes down to the cooperation of all nations working in concert to assure adequate health care in developing countries. This means using the resources of developed countries to research and set up prevention plans based on factors experienced in developing countries. It also means educating those in less-developed nations on safe sanitation practices and simple prevention methods.

To achieve universal health care, a team effort is required.

Taylor Elgarten

Photo: Flickr