Mourning for Amina, Mourning for Yemen

By Marina de Regt. “Marina, if I die, will you then forgive me for all the trouble that I caused you?” my Yemeni friend Amina wrote me ten days ago. I have known Amina since my very first days in Yemen in 1991 and was in regular touch with her via Whatsapp. “I am very ill, I have Corona, please help me, Marina, I am going to die, the treatment of Corona is very expensive, please help me”. A few weeks earlier Amina had written me that Corona was spreading in Rada’, the small town in Northeast Yemen where I …

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A different perspective on “child marriages” among Syrian refugees in Jordan

By Marina de Regt For years, humanitarian organisations in Jordan and Lebanon have been concerned about the increasing number of “child marriages” among Syrian refugees. While early marriages of girls (between 14-18 year) have also been prevalent in certain regions in Syria, and still occur, these marriages are increasing in the context of refuge. In the period between 2011 and 2015 the percentage rose from 18,4 per cent to 34,6 percent, according to the Higher Population Council in Jordan. Studies of international organisations such as Save the Children (2014) and UNICEF (2019) give insight in the causes and consequences of …

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Podcast #3 is online! Guest: Haiyue (Fiona) Shan

In this episode, Puck de Boer talks to Haiyue (or Fiona, her English name) Shan, a PhD student at the Sociology department of VU University. From a holistic, multidisciplinary perspective, she investigates the experiences and challenges of Chinese migrant women in the Netherlands before, during and after they give birth, with a special focus on mental health and postpartum depression. Haiyue likes to experiment with podcasts and documentaries to collect data and disseminate her research outcomes. Topics in this podcast include:-Haiyue’s research, the importance of a multidisciplinary perspective and the role of anthropology within it.-Questions and challenges regarding pregnancy in …

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Venezuelans affected twice by COVID-19 actions in Latin America

Rigorous measures against the corona pandemic in Latin America affect the millions of Venezuelan migrants harder than local populations on the continent. The closure of borders with neighbouring countries also has far-reaching consequences for Venezuelans at home. International action is needed to avoid a worsening humanitarian drama. Mid-March, the Colombian government declared a state of emergency because of COVID-19, and abruptly closed its borders with Venezuela. In response, local authorities transported undocumented Venezuelans across the country to the border in hundreds of buses. Since informal businesses dried up and local soup kitchens closed in Cúcuta, the largest border town in …

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‘Humanizing’ Indonesia’s COVID-19 Pandemic Response

BY RATU AYU ASIH KUSUMA PUTRI AND PAMUNGKAS A. DEWANTO While the rich industrial countries are simply readjusting their national budgets amid the COVID-19 outbreak, the fiscal options for the middle-to-low income countries seem to be strictly limited. The Indonesian government, for instance, has undergone about USD 51 billion deficit after allocating about USD 25 billion for the health sector and other incentives for the COVID-19 relief. Unfortunately, in coping with this unprecedented crisis, the government not only experiences financial deficit but also ‘implementation deficit’ in channelling the pandemic relief. Jokowi administration relies heavily on the centralized database and numeric …

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COVID-19 in a war zone

BY MARINA DE REGT “Marina, how are you? I am worried about you, how is the situation with Corona?” a Yemeni friend asked me last week via Whatsapp. It was not the first time that one of my friends showed their concern about the situation in the Netherlands, which touched me greatly. They are living Yemen, in the midst of a civil war that has led to the biggest humanitarian disaster in the world according to the United Nations, and worry about me, living in one of the most economically developed countries. Their concerns are inspired by the images they …

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The Madwoman

© Mary Evans Picture Library / Alamy By Georgette Veerhuis It was around 10AM on Friday 19 January 2018 when Dolores suddenly rushed downstairs. ‘The Netherlands has gone mad!’ she yelled as she ran out of the house. ‘I’ll tell you all about it when I come back!’ The front door slammed shut. When Dolores returned, she immediately went upstairs and began making phone calls. When I went upstairs I found Dolores in her new study. Her laptop screen displayed a white page with blue details and an image of a smiling white man in a white coat. It was …

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Fighting a silent killer in the slums

  By Vera van Rijn     Although the media frequently reports on African children dying from malaria or HIV, it is actually pneumonia that is the biggest killer in children under five. With nearly 1 million annual deaths, pneumonia kills more children than HIV, diarrhea and malaria combined. Pneumonia is called ‘the silent killer’ because even today little attention is paid to this disease. In 2015 I joined a research team in the slums of Kampala, Uganda, in search of a way to stop children from dying of this disease.

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Onverwachts bezoek: aangename verrassingen tijdens het veldwerk

Door Mariska van Zanten            Met haar dochter van zes jaar oud bezocht moeder S. het Early Assesment Center in Nairobi. Ze wilde doorverwezen worden naar een goede school voor haar slechthorende dochter. De dag dat moeder S. daar langskwam was ik aan het participerend observeren en ik hoopte zo een goed beeld te krijgen van de geboden hulp aan ouders van dove en slechthorende kinderen. Ook was ik op zoek naar ouders die ik mocht interviewen en thuis bezoeken. Ik wilde de ervaringen van deze ouders in Kenia onderzoeken. Ik zou ouders onder andere een voorlichtingsfilm laten zien om data …

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