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Ray Chambers
Mr. Chambers, a philanthropist, has directed most of his efforts toward improving the health and well being of children. He is the Founding Chairman of the Points of Light Foundation and co-founded, with Colin Powell, the America’s Promise Alliance. Mr. Chambers is the Co-Founder of the National Mentoring Partnership, and of Malaria No More.
In February 2008, the Secretary-General of the United Nations appointed Mr. Chambers as his first Special Envoy for Malaria. Visibility, awareness, and funding for malaria have each increased exponentially since then, with over $4 billion raised, over 400 million mosquito nets distributed and millions of treatment courses administered.
In February 2013 the Secretary-General expanded Mr Chambers’s mandate as his first Special Envoy for Financing the Health Millennium Development Goals – the internationally agreed set of humanitarian targets which come due in December 2015. Mr. Chambers serves as one of the UN Secretary-General’s MDG Advocates and chairs the MDG Health Alliance. He is also Co-Chairman of the Board of GBCHealth.
In his business career, Mr. Chambers was Chairman of Wesray Capital Corporation, which he co-founded with Former Secretary of the Treasury, Mr. William E. Simon.

Entries by Ray Chambers

Forgive, and Peace Is Possible

(1) Comments | Posted September 21, 2015 | 2:09 PM

Peace is hard. It takes serious work for a person to achieve a state that is quiet, tranquil and free from disturbance (inner peace). Far more daunting is what is needed to create a peaceful society that is stable, safe and free from war or violence. It is no wonder that many consider the achievement of peace to be an impossible task.

Forgiveness, by comparison, is easy. Well, perhaps not easy, but certainly easier than negotiating a peace treaty, leading a stable community of millions or clearing your own mental and physical space. Forgiveness is a unique human capacity, like empathy and compassion. And because forgiveness is both intentional and voluntary, we have complete control over it.

So here's some good news: Forgiveness is one of the most important foundations for peace. When those who have been wronged forgive, and when those who have done wrong ask for forgiveness, the possibility for peace is born.

Can we bring about peace through a more thoughtful consideration of forgiveness? I think we can.

Nelson Mandela, one of my personal heroes and one of the most expansive thinkers of our lifetime, said "Courageous people do not fear forgiving, for the sake of peace." Such powerful words, and these were words he lived by. When Mandela was finally given his freedom and the chance to lead his people, he knew that forgiveness would be the anchor of everything he achieved. "As I walked out the door toward the gate that would lead to my freedom, I knew that if I didn't leave my bitterness and hatred behind, I'd still be in prison." What an incredible statement.

Rwanda provides another compelling example of the power of forgiveness to sow the seeds of peace. Following a civil war that resulted in one of the most concentrated and brutal genocides in human history, the country embraced an approach to deliberately facilitate forgiveness across ethnic lines. This is widely credited with allowing the country to heal, to move forward, and to realize unimaginable progress. This forgiveness has not come easily, but the commitment of leaders and citizens to its principles has been the undisputed pathway to a better future.

I became a Special Envoy for the United Nations after two decades of philanthropy. During my early philanthropic years, I focused mostly on rebuilding my birthplace of Newark, New Jersey, and on creating a national movement for mentoring young people. After the horror of September 11, I became increasingly interested in understanding the root causes of war and hatred, and I turned to the UN to see how I might support its efforts. I knew the UN is a complex, huge and challenging institution. But it is also the world's most important organization, one that is anchored in the belief that only when nations and people work together can we solve the world's biggest problems and foster peace. I was all-in.

The UN was formed in 1946 out of the ashes of World War II, and with the vision of being a Temple of Peace. Today, the UN includes 193 member nations, whose leaders and staffs work together, day in and day out, and despite innumerable differences, to make a better world and to achieve peace. It is an honor to be affiliated with the work of the UN, and despite the challenges, bureaucracy and unavoidable failures, it is simply inconceivable to imagine our world without the United Nations and all it does.

In 2001, the United Nations designated Sept. 21 as the International Day of Peace. Each year, millions of people and organizations across the globe participate in activities intended to foster peace. This year, the 70th Anniversary of the UN's founding, we know that our world is far from peaceful. So I find myself thinking about what we can do to foster peace.

  • What if the Chief of the Ferguson police was able to ask forgiveness of the family of Michael Brown?
  • What if the Pope could ask forgiveness for the sexual abuse perpetrated by priests over many years?
  • What if leaders in Israel and Palestine could see that if the parents of children lost to the conflict can forgive, they can too?

Each of these acts of forgiveness is possible, and each would surely create change and improve the possibility of peace. So why not make it happen?

More important are these questions: What can you do to create peace in your world? Who can you forgive today? What grudge can you let go of before the sun sets? Who might you ask to forgive you for something you did or said that you know was hurtful? It's incredible what happens when one person embraces forgiveness. Can you make this year's International Day of Peace your day to forgive?

To get you started, take a look at the "Forgive for Peace" video, and catch the spirit. Make your own forgiveness video or image. Share your message on social media. And be part of a movement that holds the possibility to change the world.

As Desmond Tutu said, "Without forgiveness, there is no future."

This post is part of a series produced by The Huffington Post and "Forgive for Peace," in conjunction with the UN's International Day of Peace (Sept. 21, annually). The International Day of Peace is devoted to strengthening the ideals for peace, both within and among all nations and peoples. Forgiveness is the first step on the path toward Peace and therefore the Forgive for Peace Campaign was established. It also marks an annual day of non-violence and calls for a laying down of arms to bring about a 24-hour cease fire on September 21st. To learn more about Forgive for Peace, visit

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For Those Who Doubted the MDGs, Trillions of Dollars and Tens of Millions of Lives Saved

(0) Comments | Posted July 6, 2015 | 2:24 PM


School may be out for summer, but the development community is diligently drawing on lessons learned over the last 15 years in our quest to achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). On July 6th, the Secretary-General of the United Nations released his

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In Conversation: Ambassador Eric Goosby Readies for the Fight to Defeat Tuberculosis

(0) Comments | Posted March 20, 2015 | 7:22 PM


Did you know that tuberculosis claims a human life every three minutes? Or that TB has killed more people than any other infectious disease throughout the course of human history?

In January, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon appointed Ambassador Eric Goosby as...

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In Conversation: David Nabarro, the Man on the Front Line of the Ebola Crisis

(1) Comments | Posted September 16, 2014 | 12:10 PM


The world is at a critical juncture in its response to the worst Ebola outbreak in history, currently causing unprecedented death and upending communities and economies in West Africa. Countries and organizations are ramping up their commitments to help bring the crisis under...

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How Many Lives Can We Save In 500 Days?

(4) Comments | Posted August 15, 2014 | 11:50 AM


The clock is ticking loudly for all of us focused on achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), whose established end-date is December 31, 2015. We have made absolutely phenomenal progress since the goals were set, and there is much recent good...

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In Conversation: HRH Princess Sarah Zeid of Jordan on Mothers and Children in Humanitarian Crises

(0) Comments | Posted May 9, 2014 | 12:48 PM


The birth of a child should be a day of celebration and awe. But for millions of women around the world it can be the most dangerous -- and too often the last -- day of her life. Save the Children, with its...

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Top 10 Reasons to Believe Malaria Can Be Defeated in Our Lifetime

(2) Comments | Posted April 25, 2014 | 12:09 PM


In 2008, the malaria community came together to celebrate the first World Malaria Day and redouble global efforts to fight one of the world's oldest diseases, which at that time killed one million children a year. The progress made in the...

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On Giving Thanks: Notes on Arianna Huffington's New Book - Thrive

(0) Comments | Posted March 26, 2014 | 10:00 AM


I couldn't agree more with my friend Arianna Huffington's insight that giving is one of the foundations for building a rich life. I can confidently say that none of the material things I have acquired through my fortunate business career has been as...

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In Conversation: Paul Farmer on Today's Tuberculosis Emergency and Our Path to Saving Millions of Lives

(2) Comments | Posted March 24, 2014 | 1:33 PM


In the history of humankind, tuberculosis (TB) has killed more people than any other disease. TB remains one of the top 10 causes of deaths in the world and competes with HIV/AIDS as the biggest killer amongst all infectious diseases. One...

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Making Her Mark at Davos: Prime Minister Erna Solberg of Norway

(0) Comments | Posted January 24, 2014 | 10:24 AM

For more than four decades, the World Economic Forum (WEF) Annual Meeting at Davos has brought together leaders from industry, government, academia, civil society and the media to discuss pressing social and economic issues. This year's focus is on the widening gap between rich and poor.

If you work in...

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Child Deaths From Malaria Halved

(1) Comments | Posted December 11, 2013 | 12:04 PM

When people all over the world work together to achieve meaningful goals, it's important to pause and acknowledge success. Today the global health community deserves a high five. The World Health Organization released its annual World Malaria Report 2013 and it contains some seriously good news for children,...

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Ghosts, Goblins, Candy and Vaccines: How Trick-or-Treating Saves Lives

(1) Comments | Posted October 30, 2013 | 6:22 PM


What a privilege it is to be a kid who can dress up in a scary costume on a late October night and call on friendly neighbors for a handful of candy. This year I hope you're adding to your children's...

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If You Care About Children Join Our Effort to Save Four Million of Them

(0) Comments | Posted September 19, 2013 | 10:58 AM

The global community will soon gather in New York City for the annual United Nations General Assembly. Many important things will be discussed over several days, but none weigh more heavily on me than the millions of children's and women's lives that are at stake if we fail to achieve...

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Backpacks That Save Lives? You Bet!

(1) Comments | Posted September 3, 2013 | 6:51 PM


Summer is winding down. Store shelves are stocked with notebooks and pencils instead of sunscreen and beach balls. And for most kids, the essential back-to-school purchase is the almighty backpack. If you're going to carry books and lunch to school, you'd better...

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A (Not-So-Nagging) Reminder That Actually Saves Lives

(1) Comments | Posted August 7, 2013 | 11:47 AM

"Eat your vegetables." "Brush your teeth before bedtime." "Don't forget to take out the garbage." Who doesn't remember the nagging reminders that echoed through childhood and helped make us responsible adults? Today I've got a story about an amazing effort to save peoples' lives through regular reminders -- more helpful...

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Our True Point of Light

(0) Comments | Posted July 15, 2013 | 10:00 AM

During the 1988 presidential campaign, George H. W. Bush introduced the concept of "one thousand points of light." At first, some were unsure of the meaning of the phrase. But as the campaign wore on, Americans began to understand: President Bush was referring to the people of the United States...

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Closing the HIV Treatment Gap: A Global Development Priority

(0) Comments | Posted July 3, 2013 | 1:20 PM

Every movement has its moments. The quest to defeat HIV has had more than its share, both exhilarating and devastating. Yet through it all, the global community has come together in the most positive ways: Researchers remained undeterred. Advocates were indefatigable. Leaders chose to prioritize HIV, not ignore it. Patients...

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The Nanny Who Could, and Did - Our First 'Global Health Heroes' Winner

(2) Comments | Posted June 24, 2013 | 2:44 PM

I am thrilled to announce the winner of our first $1,000 gift in recognition of a person who is making a difference in global health. My hope is that this modest gift inspires you to recognize your own potential to make a difference in the world. As the big players...

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Fueling Our Collective Future

(2) Comments | Posted June 7, 2013 | 12:33 PM

Politicians aren't always known for their consistency. They operate in a world of competing demands and shifting political winds, making long-term commitment to a cause a rare achievement. The issues of global health are especially hard to support for politicians facing tough challenges at home, especially economic ones.


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The Most Important Doctor in the World

(1) Comments | Posted May 24, 2013 | 5:20 PM

In my UN Special Envoy positions I have had the honor to work with some of the best policy makers, researchers, and practitioners of global health. And I am always excited when my path crosses with Dr. Margaret Chan, the Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO), and one of...

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