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Vanessa Thevathasan
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Vanessa Thevathasan is a freelance researcher and writer. She currently works as a blog writer for International Women’s Initiative, a community interest company working towards the promotion of women's rights and gender equality. She also writes for the Centre for Armed Violence Reduction. She writes about the impact of conflict on women and children and focuses on raising awareness about the many challenges women and girls face in daily life, including health, sexual based violence and economic security.

Entries by Vanessa Thevathasan

The Art of Dialogue: Talking Peace Through #Art4Peace

(0) Comments | Posted September 30, 2014 | 2:57 PM

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Zina: Peace Comes From Within, 2014


In an increasingly diverse and conflicted world, more collaborative effort needs to be made towards ensuring open community dialogue towards conflict prevention. There are many diverse paths to pursue peace and yet, art is...

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Breaking Bread for Peace: Conflict Kitchen and Cultural Food Diplomacy

(0) Comments | Posted September 29, 2014 | 4:41 PM

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Food diplomacy initiatives are increasingly being recognized as a successful means to open up peace dialogue as a result of our increasingly cosmopolitan palettes. Food is one of the oldest forms of exchange, with yet untapped recognition to deliver social conflict transformation. With...

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Famine Alert: Immediate Response Is Needed to Combat Somalia's Growing Humanitarian Crisis

(0) Comments | Posted September 24, 2014 | 10:56 AM

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Famine is at Somalia's door once again. In May, U.N. officials alerted the international community that up to 200,000 children under the age of five could die from severe malnutrition by the end of the year. The situation is exacerbated by the limited...

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Finding a Way Home: The Situation for Young Afghan Returnees

(0) Comments | Posted September 23, 2014 | 6:07 PM

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MSF Kabul Afghanistan: Young men from a camp in Kabul who helped to setup a temporary clinic for their people in Kabul.

In light of NATO's Summit Declaration on Afghanistan in Wales earlier this month, it's time to look...

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International Peace Day: Social Media as a Tool for #TalkingPeace

(0) Comments | Posted September 22, 2014 | 10:26 AM

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The unprecedented scale of war and human catastrophe that has raged across the world has marked this year as one of the most violent in recent times. Greater pessimism is expressed around prospects for peace, an idea that seems distant at best and...

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Famine Alert: Immediate Response Is Needed to Combat Somalia's Growing Humanitarian Crisis

(0) Comments | Posted September 22, 2014 | 9:49 AM

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Famine is at Somalia's door once again. In May, U.N. officials alerted the international community that up to 200,000 children under the age of five could die from severe malnutrition by the end of the year. The situation is exasperated by the limited...

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International Literacy Day 2014: The State of Girls' Education Today

(3) Comments | Posted September 8, 2014 | 2:58 PM

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As we mark International Literacy Day, it is an opportune time to highlight the importance of literacy and the challenges ahead in promoting global literacy. The statics are shocking and reinforce the urgency behind today's significance. According to the World Literacy...

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Securing the Right to Motherhood in Uganda Through Safe Birthing Projects

(0) Comments | Posted August 21, 2014 | 5:37 PM

In Uganda around sixteen women die giving birth each day (MDG report, 2010). The urgency to combat high maternal mortality is critical given that women give birth to on average seven children, the third highest in the world ((Uganda Bureau of Statistics and Macro International Inc. 2007).

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Paving the Way for Women's Inclusion in Palestinian and Israeli Peacebuilding

(0) Comments | Posted August 16, 2014 | 2:11 PM

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The latest breakdown in Palestinian-Israeli negotiations marks an opportune time to open up conciliation processes to recognize and account for women's contribution. Previously, the Palestinian-Israeli peace talks have lacked inclusivity and transparency for women. Yet, women have a unique insight and skill to...

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The Modus Operandi of ISIS: A War Waged on the Battleground of Women's Bodies

(23) Comments | Posted August 15, 2014 | 4:01 PM

The fall of Mosul, Iraq's second-largest city, in June marks the rapid territorial expansion of the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS). Iraq has been hurled into a new civil war where women's bodies are one of the battlefields. Yet as a proto-Caliphate descends on Mosul, the violence and...

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Voices of Reconciliation in the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict

(0) Comments | Posted August 6, 2014 | 12:29 PM

The third major military confrontation in Gaza in six years has taken place. An extremely fragile ceasefire has commenced. The latest escalation of violence after the kidnapping and murder of three Israeli teenage boys and Israel's counterassault through Operation Protective Edge in Gaza has garnered further undercurrents of hatred and...

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Birthing in the Gambia: Educate, Empower and Enable

(0) Comments | Posted July 31, 2014 | 4:32 PM

The BIG Project was established in 2011 in collaboration between Soroptimist International Great Britain and Ireland (SIGBI) and Maternal Childhealth Advocacy International (MCAI) to provide higher grade maternal care to combat the high maternal mortality rates in the Gambia through its motto: Educate, Empower and Enable. SIGBI's work in the...

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Securing the Right to Motherhood in Uganda: International Women's Initiative's Safe Birthing Project.

(0) Comments | Posted July 31, 2014 | 2:50 AM

In Uganda around sixteen women die giving birth each day (MDG report, 2010). The urgency to combat high maternal mortality is critical given that women give birth to on average seven children, the third highest in the world ((Uganda Bureau of Statistics and Macro International Inc. 2007). Such high rates...

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Saving Mothers in Afghanistan: Progress, Challenges and the Road Ahead

(0) Comments | Posted July 30, 2014 | 5:53 PM

Afghanistan has once again been labelled one of the worst places in the world to be a mother. According to UNICEF, a woman dies every two hours due to complications during pregnancy in Afghanistan. The main causes of maternal deaths are hemorrhaging, eclampsia and prolonged or obstructed labor, which are...

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