Nicholas Kristof highlights the VAD Foundation in his December 2016 short list of charity recommendations. Forget The Tie. Give A Gift That Matters.

Source: NY Times, Nicholas Kristof, "Forget the Tie. Give a Gift that Matters," December 1, 2016

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....Sure, you can buy your uncle a necktie that he won’t wear, or your niece an Amazon certificate that she’ll forget to use. Or you can help remove shrapnel from an injured child in Syria, or assist students at risk of genocide in South Sudan. The major aid organizations have special catalogs this time of year: You can buy an alpaca for a family for $150 at Heifer International, help educate a girl for $75 at Save the Children or help extend a much­admired microsavings program for $25 at Care. But this year my annual holiday gift list is special. I’ve tied some items to the election of Donald Trump, and I’ve looked for organizations that you may not have heard of....

...I’ve reported on crimes against humanity unfolding in South Sudan, one of the world’s poorest countries, and now the United Nations is warning of the risk of full­blown genocide. In this impossible situation, a South Sudanborn American named Valentino Deng is running a high school, one of few still functioning. It needs support so students can get an education and build their country. You may remember Valentino: He’s the “lost boy” at the center of Dave Eggers’s best­selling book “What Is the What.” What he has done since, in founding this school, is even more impressive. 

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World Affairs Council Blog Guest | Educating Youth and Curbing Hate Speech Can Pave the Way to Peace in South Sudan by Valentino Deng

This piece is by Valentino Achak Deng, Co-founder, Valentino Achak Deng Foundation. The views expressed are those of the author and are not intended to represent those of World Affairs. Deng will speak at World Affairs on Wednesday, September 28, 2016.

South Sudan is the world’s youngest nation. Tragically, the euphoria of liberation following our independence in 2011 was soon undermined by deep-seated political, ethnic and geographical tensions. For the past three years, this power struggle has played out as a full-scale civil war in the country, leaving citizens worse off than they were a decade ago.

Read the full blog here on the World Affairs Council's blog. 

Valentino Speaks at the World Affairs Council

Dave Eggers and Valentino Deng in-conversation at the World Affairs Council of Northern California on September 28. 2016. 

South Sudan is the world’s youngest nation. Tragically, the euphoria of liberation following its independence in 2011 was soon undermined by deep-seated political, ethnic and geographical tensions. For the past 3 years, this power struggle has played out as a full-scale civil war in the country. Over 2 million South Sudanese are internally displaced, and over half of its 11 million population is facing famine.

This discussion reflects on important questions facing South Sudan 5 years after gaining its independence. Is there hope for peace and stability in South Sudan? What role will the international community play in bridging ethnic tensions in the country? What is the future for the UN South Sudanese peacekeeping mission that is opposed by the very government it aims to support? Can the UN impose peace on a reluctant nation? What is the role of youth and the diaspora in paving the way to sustainable peace?

Listen to the podcast here: South Sudan -- Five Years Later