Hello - I have certainly appreciated reading the introductions that
others have shared, thank you.
Here is my introduction to join the others in this very interesting and
worthwhile endeavor that you have initiated.
Residence: Sudbury, Massachusetts (just west of Boston, no. of
Framingham, so. of Concord)
(We also have a small flat at the Barbican in London)
Place of work:
My husband and I started a nonprofit organization called
"Population Initiatives For Peace" (PIFP) while living in London three years back,
and it still is centered there because we have been lucky enough to receive
funding from the European Union. We would probably be living there full-time if
it weren't that our son really wanted to go to the High School here in
Sudbury that his brother attended - he has 3 more years here so we are working
out a way to do that.
Since our work so far has been limited to the Middle East/North
African region, and my husband is from that area (Tunisia - and thus speaks
Arabic which I unfortunately still have not learned), he is the one who at
present does about 80-90% of the necessary travel-related work and I do things
that are related to research, proposal writing, strategic planning,
documentation, materials development, etc. IN SUM, I guess my place of work right now
is mainly in Massachusetts (with connections in London) but my mind is
often in Gaza, the West Bank, Yemen, Egypt, Tunisia and Algeria! (places
where we have worked or are working now)
Background/Education: Attended the University of California Berkeley,
then the USF School of Medicine. Trained in Pediatrics and Public Health.
Worked for a time in clinical pediatrics, then in general public health in
various county/state/international agencies.
1)While working in Tunisia as a pediatrician (we lived there 4 years in
the 70's) it became clear to me that the children in the children's
hospital there were nearly all there for preventable diseases - mainly
malnutrition and infections or a combination... I decided I wanted to work
"upstream" further (ie the adage of preventing people from falling in the river
further upstream rather than catching them when drowning..) so I went to work
at the country's Institute of Nutrition as Chief of Nutrition Education
and had a rewarding experience there.
2) Then on return to the U.S. I again did clincial pediatrics at a
hospital in Oakland and enjoyed it (all the while learning about confronting
episodes of child abuse and neglect up close and personal) - BUT I noticed that
I really preferred to be in on program and policy matters affecting
children's health city-wide. That's when I really made the final switch to public
health. I have worked in child health programs, injury prevention programs,
chronic disease prevention programs, a preventive medicine training program,
family planning programs, and school health programs, as well as working in
3) Attending the Beijing Women's Conference/NGO Forum last September in
China (more later on that I 'spose, it might take too long here!<s>)
So in sum I am a person interested in the health of families all over
the world - with regional interests in the middle east - and with a strong
focus on how we can PREVENT injuries, ill health (both physical and emotional
health), and avoidable and too-early deaths. Thinking within the context of this
group, (and this is a raison d'etre of our PIFP organization too) I believe,
however, that people cannot focus on, or be empowered to fulfill, the ideal of
preventive health care when they are faced with conflict, war and violence of any
kind. Thus, my interest in working in parallel on peace,
conflict-resolution, and violence prevention issues.
I think that sums up why I am happy to join with this group and think
about the problem of "what is this world coming to" - and ways to help spread
the word about what is already known about the prevention of both
inter-personal as well as societal violence.
P.S. Personal addendum:
We also have two older sons: Jon - an environmental chemist who is
working in Salt Lake City, and Alex, who will be in his 3rd year of law school
this year, well on his way to working in his chosen field: international
AND I have two fantastic sisters who I might try to get involved here.
One has joined with me to co-found our own nonprofit called "Women's Health
International" which will focus on women's empowerment re health information and
knowledge, and hopes to help support networks of women's groups working in
partnership around post - Beijing health issues (which definitely include violence
against women). My other sister is a musician/composer who lives in LA who will
eventually also be working with us on WHI (for one thing, doing the music for a CD
Rom we have in mind!).
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