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J is for Jad, peanut butter & chocolate, and global health paparazzi

The info hub for the hub of global health


Brought to you by the letter J 

J is for Jad, the mischievous baby goat created by the Sesame Workshop and the International Rescue Committee to help Syrian refugee children cope with crisis. Their program, Ahlan Simsim, stars Muppet kids Jad and Basma, a recent refugee. Instead of teaching numbers and letters, Ahlan Simsim is tackling fear, anger, loneliness, and distrust.


You got peanut butter in my chocolate!

Research and data science. They go together like peanut butter and chocolate. That’s why Possible, Medic Mobile, PIVOT, and Integrate Health dreamed up a new global health research and data science hub.

Hatched by a bunch of mixed methods researchers and data geeks, this new hub is for people who want to put their heads and methods together to improve health equity. The launch event is today, December 13, at the Knack in Belltown.


Oh, baby

Nearly 15 million babies are born too early every year, causing big problems in low-resource settings that aren’t ready and equipped to treat them. WGHA members are working to understand what’s needed to give those moms and babies more time.

  • The Global Alliance to Prevent Prematurity and Stillbirth’s Preventing Preterm Birth Initiative studied infection, inflammation, nutrition, and genomics—the biology associated with poor birth outcomes.
  • And Adara is showing us what’s possible with the right care at the right time in this video featuring our favorite 12-year-old triplets—Marvin, Martin, and Mildred.

How low can you go?

The World Health Organization’s new World Malaria Report 2019 shows an all-time low in new cases of and deaths from malaria. It’s a good and timely follow-up to the report from The Lancet Commission on Malaria Eradication, which includes the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, showing that malaria eradication is achievable within a generation.

And while more countries—like China, Malaysia, El Salvador, Iran, and Timor-Leste—are reaching zero malaria, Malaria No More is urging donor countries—especially the US—to invest more and pay progress forward.


Good morning, Vietnam!

When they’re not supporting teen moms in the Dominican Republic, the Global Programs team at Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest and the Hawaiian Islands (PPGNHI) is promoting LGBTQ-inclusive sexual health education in Vietnam. Last month, our PPGNHI friends celebrated 15 years of progress for Vietnam’s LGBTQ health and rights movement at the landmark Stronger Together summit in Hanoi.


Follow the paparazzi

They’ll lead you to Seattle, of course, and two local ladies crushing it in life and the media.

  • Kati Collective founder and CEO Kirsten Gagnaire talks with the Through the Noise podcast about technology, health outcomes, and why women and girls should always be in the middle of the action. Preach, Kirsten!
  • SightLife CEO Claire Bonilla shares leadership lessons, highlights from her 20-year Microsoft career, and how she unwinds in this Seattle Business Magazine “Daring Women” profile.

Claire also gave props to Women in Global Health Seattle. Not involved yet? Get on the mailing list and you may bump into these rock stars at a 2020 Women in Global Health Seattle event.


New in the 206

Medical Teams International’s new local office is (almost) open for business. Come January, Medical Teams will co-locate with Agros International in the heart of Belltown, after jumping across the lake from Redmond.


New in the executive suite

In January, PATH welcomes Nikolaj Gilbert as its fifth president and CEO. Originally from Denmark, Nikolaj expects to expand PATH’s global footprint.

And in February, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will welcome Mark Suzman as its fourth CEO. Originally from South Africa, Mark is known for his policy, media, and advocacy chops.


New power dynamics

The Global Health Council’s Global Health Landscape Symposium last week in Washington, DC, turned a spotlight on how to shift the power dynamics of global health. Minerva Strategies was there and wrote about why words matter in efforts to decolonize global health.


Opportunity alert

Attention science and policy nerds! Check out these opportunities to help you do what you do best.

  • L’Oréal USA, partnered with the American Association for the Advancement of Science, is accepting applications for the 2020 L’Oréal USA for Women in Science fellowship program, which grants $60,000 to five exceptional women who are US-based postdoctoral students.
  • Meanwhile, the Consortium of Universities for Global Health launched a new group to strengthen US leadership in global health. If you’re a researcher who wants to talk policy, check out the brand new State Technical Advisory Team (STAT).

People on the Move

  • Dr. Peter Small joins Intellectual Ventures as director of the Global Health Technologies Team. Drs. Julian Atim and Puneet Dewan are also new to the growing team.
  • Misha Coleman, Executive Director of our sister alliance Global Health Alliance Australia, is the newly elected Mayor of Yarra City Council, one of the most progressive city councils in Australia, right in the heart of Melbourne.
  • Sarah Crass made a move from Washington and World Vision to Oregon and Medical Teams International, where she is Chief of Staff.
  • Betsy Ingalls joins Panorama Global as a new project manager.
  • VillageReach announces three new board members: Dr. Iyabo Tinubu-Karch, Stephan Coonrod, J.D., and Dr. Vivien Tsu—the recipient of WGHA’s 2018 Pioneers Award for Impact.

Around Town


Note from the Editor: This is our last Field Notes for the year. Thank you for reading and for sharing with your friends and colleagues. We can’t wait to see and celebrate you in 2020. Happy Holidays!


Do you have a tip for Field Notes? Send it to Tiffany Cain, tcain@wgha.flywheelsites.com

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