The Carter Center Blog

Panama Elections Full of Contradictions and Tensions

Panama’s elections were full of contradictions and tensions. Defying the polls, the winning candidate, Juan Carlos Varela, was the sitting vice president estranged from the president and running in opposition. With the possibility of the governing party continuing in office for the first time since the ouster of Manuel Noriega in 1990, fears of a growing concentration of power contributed to Panamanians rejecting the party that had led the highest economic growth rates in the hemisphere and a president with over 60 percent approval ratings.

Justice in Urban Liberia

The Carter Center’s community justice advisors (CJAs) are bringing free legal services – and awareness of how the law should work – to urban slums in Liberia’s capital, Monrovia.

In the slideshow below, we follow advisor Stephanie Sayeh as she visits client Massa Sherriff in Peace Island Township, home to many who were forced to flee during Liberia’s long civil …

Join President Carter’s Call to Action

The suffering of women and girls can be alleviated when individuals take forceful actions, which can impact larger society, asserts President Carter in his new book “A Call to Action.” Political and religious leaders share a special responsibility, but the fact is that all of us can act within our own spheres of influence to meet these challenges.

In “A …

Woman Sees Better Future After Eye Surgery

Stephanie Palmer is assistant director for the Carter Center’s Trachoma Control Program.

Flies buzzed in our faces as Fatahou Ibrahim, a Nigerien public health student, and I interviewed Assana*, a young woman with the eye disease trichiasis, and her mother, Habiba, sitting on colorful plastic mats beneath a tree. Assana, in her early 20s, said that trichiasis felt as though …

Working to Improve the Mental Health Care System in Liberia

Benedict Dossen, a native Liberian and an administrator for the Carter Center’s Liberia Mental Health Program, explains what it is like to watch and help his country heal.

Liberia is a West African country nearly the size of Mississippi with a population of 3.8 million. But unlike many other countries, Liberia only has one practicing psychiatrist. The need for mental …

Credible Elections are a Starting Point for Change in Madagascar

The Carter Center was pleased to partner with the Electoral Institute for Sustainable Democracy in Africa for a joint election observation mission to Madagascar’s Dec. 20 legislative and second-round presidential elections. Former Mauritius President Cassam Uteem, EISA Executive Director Dr. Denis Kadima, and I co-led the delegation.

River Blindness Treatment Brings Joy of Marriage Back to Ugandan Village

The success of the Ugandan National Onchocerciasis Program in Abeju means that fewer children will be ostracized because of river blindness.

Many of the benefits of Uganda’s National Onchocerciasis Elimination Program, supported by The Carter Center, are readily apparent: reduced blindness and itching, increased productivity, and better overall health outcomes. For one community in Uganda, however, an additional benefit has …

Celebrating the 100 Millionth Treatment for Blinding Trachoma

In early November, The Carter Center reached a trachoma milestone: supporting the distribution of more than 100 million doses of the trachoma-fighting drug Zithromax®, donated by Pfizer Inc. These treatments were provided over the last 11 years to trachoma-endemic communities in six African countries: Ethiopia, Mali, Nigeria, Niger, Sudan, and South Sudan.

The 100 millionth dose was distributed in Ethiopia’s …

President Carter Discusses Neglected Diseases on ABC’s ‘Good Morning America’

President Carter spoke with ABC’s George Stephanopoulos on “Good Morning America” on Nov. 5, about The Carter Center’s fight to wipe out trachoma and combat other neglected diseases.

“No former president has served longer out of office or made such a mark against some of the world’s most intractable problems,” Stephanopoulos said as he introduced the president.…

Critical Nepal Election to End Stalemate, Promote Stability | Q&A with David Pottie

Carter Center expert David Pottie explains the importance of Nepal’s upcoming election and the role of Carter Center observers.

Carter Center Pursues Lasting Peace in the Sudans

The geographic lines dividing Sudan and South Sudan “are completely blurry, so we focus on the lines that connect us,” Professor Jok Madut Jok, undersecretary in South Sudan’s Ministry of Culture, said during a “Conversations at The Carter Center” on Oct. 15.

Disputes over borders, an oil pipeline and access to resources persist in Sudan and South Sudan, which separated …

Art as a Bridge to Health

A community art group has been helping the Carter Center’s Onchocerciasis Elimination Program for the Americas (OEPA) highlight vital health messages.

Caja Lúdica, which translates as “the playful box” in English, uses interactive theater, costumes, music, juggling and more to engage communities, using art as a bridge for health education. Recently, the Guatemalan non-profit troupe visited Mexico, at the invitation …

Carter Center Celebrates International Right to Know Day with Liberians

In celebration of International Right to Know Day on Sept. 28, 2013, The Carter Center and local partners in Liberia hosted a series of activities to raise awareness of the value of freedom of information and to encourage the use and full implementation of the country’s 2010 Freedom of Information Act.

Local Georgia Police Chief Travels with Carter Center Mental Health Program in Liberia

Moultrie, Ga., Police Chief Frank N. Lang Sr. recently traveled with the Carter Center’s Mental Health Program to Liberia where he helped train local law enforcement officers on how to support people experiencing a mental health crisis.

Tune In: Carter Center River Blindness Experts Featured in Documentary on Public Television

“Dark Forest, Black Fly,” an independent documentary feature film from award-winning producer Gary Strieker and Cielo Productions, offers an in-depth look at Uganda’s pending triumph against river blindness, a disease that has blinded sufferers in Africa for thousands of years. The film documents the East African nation’s pioneering decision to pursue nationwide river blindness elimination in cooperation with their partners, …