Make Food Not War


The single largest cause of acute hunger in the world is not a lack of food, it is war and conflict. The World Food Program says conflict has pushed 74 million people to the edge of starvation. One of the most severe situations is in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, where militias and marauding gangs have driven millions of farmers off their land. GGC discusses the crisis with the director of the World Food Program in the DRC, Claude Jibidar, Rosette Kasereka, a farmer and Zachary, a former child soldier. The fertile DRC could easily grow enough food for all its people and all of Africa, for that matter, if the fighting would only stop, Jibidar tells co-hosts Edie Lush and Claudia Romo Edelman. Humanitarian groups and governments have adopted a new approach focused on ending need as well as delivering aid. In the DRC, that need is an end to violence. So WFP and other groups have focused on peacemaking. Kasereka credits a WFP program for uniting farmers. “Through union is power,” she says, ”we have become one. It has brought us together in this in this conflict situation that we lived before.“

This episode also features an interview with Tara Nathan, Executive Vice President of Humanitarian Development at our sponsor, Mastercard. She describes the digital aid network Mastercard has built to help humanitarian groups, corporations and governments to get out of their silos and work together.

Since 2012, Mastercard and the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) have been working together to deliver innovative solutions to help create a world with Zero Hunger. WFP works in more than 80 countries around the world, feeding people caught in conflict and disasters, and laying the foundations for a better future.

In 2017, Mastercard launched the 100 Million Meals initiative to raise funds for children in need around the world via cause marketing campaigns and events,. These campaigns support WFP school meals programmes, which can mean not only better nutrition and health, but also increased access to and achievement in education.

Featured guests


Zachary spent 5 years as a child soldier for an armed militia in the DRC – aged 13 to 18. Alongside other young people who had left the armed groups he underwent training organised by local NGOs, UNDP and UNICEF.  WFP ensured that he was fed while at the National Institute for Professional Training (Institut National de Formation Professionnelle: INPP). Now he has started a business using the computer and printer he was given as part of the training. He writes resumes and letters on Word, makes PowerPoint presentations and downloads movies and music for the people of his village and hopes one day to be a computer engineer. Since returning, he has dissuaded more young people from joining armed groups as he did.

Rosette Kasereka

Rosette Kasereka is a farmer in the North Kivu province of the DRC. She was displaced from her home for many years and was unable to farm. Since being able to return to her home she has participated in WFP and FAO’s resilience-building project known as “Purchase for Progress”, or P4P. The project helps farmers increase output and improve access to markets. Rosette now manages a warehouse which as a result of P4P is bringing in more produce than ever before. The increased amounts of money this project creates allows the farms to grow and for children to be sent to school. Rosette now passes on what she has learnt from being a part of P4P to other female farmers.

Claude Jibidar

Mr. Claude Jibidar arrived in DR Congo in July 2016, appointed as Representative and Country Director, where he had previously served in different capacity from 1999 to 2002 and from 2006 to 2008.  Mr. Jibidar brings more than 25 years of non-profit and corporate leadership experience focusing on food security, nutrition and emergency response strategies. Mr. Jibidar guides a team of about 500 staff members in the Country Office and across 8 Area and field Offices aiming at meeting the immediate food needs of vulnerable Congolese. He had served previously, three years in the same capacity in Kabul Afghanistan, leading a team of more than 550 staff across 6 field offices.   

Benjamin Anguandia

Benjamin Anguandia works for the World Food Programme in the DRC. He has lived in the DRC for all of his life excluding 5 years that he spent in Kenya as a young boy. He studied in the DRC majoring in biochemistry in high school and communications at university. He has experience living and working in insecure environments in the DRC and uses his knowledge in areas such as health and food security to help communities.

Tara Nathan

Tara Nathan is Executive Vice President for the Humanitarian & Development sector at Mastercard. In this role, she leads the company’s strategy to develop and scale products & solutions for the Base of the Pyramid. The Humanitarian & Development team is dedicated to creating an ecosystem that streamlines access to education, health, commerce, and other vital services for the most vulnerable communities. Tara’s team is focused on driving commercially sustainable social impact. Before Mastercard, she worked at Mobile Payment Solutions as the chief executive officer leading the innovation and commercial development of the Mastercard Mobile Payments Gateway a platform designed to facilitate mobile payments for consumers around the world. Before joining Mastercard, Ms. Nathan worked in various managerial positions at Citigroup’s retail banking business and was a diplomat in the U.S. Foreign Service working in Taiwan, Japan and China. She earned a BSFS from the Georgetown School of Foreign Service and an MBA from The Wharton School of Business.

This episode was made possible thanks to the support of


New Speaker: 00:00 [Music]

Claude Jibidar: 00:05 If people in the DRC cannot plant because they are driven away from the field that don’t have what they need to feed themselves every day.

Rosette: 00:19 (Native Language) When there is war, everything is destroyed. No school for the children and no food.

Claude Jibidar: 00:27 Surviving sometimes means being on the side of those who hold the guns.

Zachary: 00:36 (Native Language) Life was very difficult to surviving, getting food and that’s when I ended up joining an armed group.

Claude Jibidar: 00:44 If an end is brought to the conflict, I’ll be ready to go back to DRC in a few years’ time. Not to be distributing food, but to be buying food from the DRC.

Claudia Edelman: 01:05 This is the Global GoalsCast, the podcast that shows how we can change the world

Edie Lush: 01:11 In this episode – famine and how to end it. 100 million women, men and children are going to bed tonight dangerously underfed, but the solution isn’t just delivering food, it’s making peace.

Claudia Edelman: 01:25 This podcast is all about making progress and celebrating champions, but we also shine a light on issues that might either derail the progress or on connections that are harder to see. In a moment, we will hear about the connection between conflict and extreme hunger and the new approach by humanitarian agencies.

Edie Lush: 01:46 But first, this word about our sponsors.

Michelle: 01:51 This episode is sponsored by Mastercard. Stay with us later for an interview with Tara Nathan, Executive Vice President of humanitarian development at Mastercard, who will tell us about the digital aid network Mastercard is helping to build and our thanks to CBS New Digital and to Harmon, the official sound of Global GoalsCast.

Edie Lush: 02:18 Welcome back to the Global GoalsCast. I am Edie Lush.

Claudia Edelman: 02:21 And I am Claudia Romo Edelman. Edie, we talk a lot about how sustainable development goals are connected and interconnected. How one goal, say, educating girls helps achieve other goals like ending extreme poverty.

Edie Lush: 02:38 Exactamente, Claudia, and in this episode we’re going to explore a vivid and brutal example of this connection. Goal number two is “Zero Hunger” by 2030. Goal 16 calls for “Peace and Strong Institutions”. What humanitarian agencies say is that we will never achieve zero hunger without major strides towards resolving conflicts.

Claudia Edelman: 03:01 Let us share some basic facts. The World Food Program says that about 113 million people are suffering acute hunger in 53 countries. These are people at risk of starvation in places like Yemen, Afghanistan and parts of Africa.

Edie Lush: 03:20 The problem in the majority of these severe situations is not a lack of food, it’s war and conflict that prevents the growing of food or it’s delivery

Claudia Edelman: 03:29 Or both.

Edie Lush: 03:30 Right? Exactly. So the lasting solution isn’t dropping burlap bags of food from cargo planes. It’s healing the conflicts.

Claudia Edelman: 03:37 Correct. And the World Food Program says that one of the most severe examples of this challenge is the Democratic Republic of Congo, the second largest country in Africa, which is what you explore with them. And the Democratic Republic of Congo, Edie, as you know, holds a very special place in my heart. It was the first ever campaign I launched

Edie Lush: 04:01 And we are going to talk about that at the end of the show. So you, the dear listener, have to hang on for that. So the World Food Program says 13 million people suffer acute hunger in the Democratic Republic of Congo and millions more are at risk. The country has been torn apart by violence and millions of people have been displaced from their land. So in this very fertile country, they can’t grow enough food for themselves and it is often very hard to get food to them. To understand the situation, I spoke with three people in the DRC. The first was Claude Jibidar who directs the efforts of the World Food Program in the DRC. And to help tell the story, he introduced me to two local colleagues. One is Rosette Kasereka, a farmer who had been driven from her land. And the other is a young man we call Zachary, a former child soldier. We’ll hear more from them through a World Food Programme translator. I’ll tell you more about him later.

Claudia Edelman: 05:00 Claude Jibidar has been with the World Food Program for 25 years. As a fact, World Food Programme, WFP, Edie, what do you say? We actually start a lexicon in this podcast and we started introducing jargons and abbreviations that people should know about. So Claude has been with the World Food Programme, WFP, for 25 years.

Edie Lush: 05:22 Okay. I will allow that jargon.

Claudia Edelman: 05:23 He worked in the DRC in his younger days and then return in 2016 after a tour in Afghanistan as conditions in the DRC were worsening.

Claude Jibidar: 05:36 The DRC is part of my daily concerns, worries. It’s what keeps me awake at night because DRC is one of those countries. Where everything should be in place for people to have more than enough to eat.

Rosette: 06:00 (Native language) The farming, we do is in a very difficult context because since 1994, the war has been um, making access difficult to our farms.

Claude Jibidar: 06:13 If people in the DRC cannot plant because they are uprooted because they are driven away from the field they don’t have what they need to feed themselves every day, they don’t have what it needs to take a sick child to health center or take a child to school. That’s the bottom line. If people don’t cultivate in DRC they don’t eat. The one important factor, if I was to pin only one in the DRC, I would say conflict. And what it means is that a family, a woman, her children, the husband in the middle of the night anytime suddenly they have to run and that run and leave everything behind.

Rosette: 07:08 (Native language) It was one of the groups called, CNDP that attacked the regular army. It was heated up badly that the army had to flee. And in that period there were many people that lost their lives. And in that period we had to run away. We had to flee from that (native language) and at that time we fled with my four children and with my husband and uh, my mother.

Claude Jibidar: 07:42 So Rosette is one of those extraordinary women in the DRC. You cannot imagine what they go through.

Rosette: 07:55 (Native language) And so when you talk about when there’s war, everything is destroyed. No school for the children and no food. We all slept, at one little room and food was very difficult to find.

Edie Lush: 08:12 It would be simple, or perhaps I should say, simplistic to think of all of this as good farmers who driven from their land by evil soldiers. Claude explained to me that often is not the soldiers themselves were caught up in the cycle of hunger and conflict. The perpetrators are victims, too.

Claude Jibidar: 08:30 In many instances you are talking of a handful of young guys from a village trying to survive. And what do they do to survive? They try to have access to resources either by taking it from whoever may provide them something: a bag of maize, a cow, a goat from the villages simply because those young people are armed. In other circumstances, maybe much better organized groups, some of them manipulated, some of them even set up to access and control resources and they get something out of it…so it’s all about survival.

Zachary: 09:21 (Native language) I had to stop school suddenly because of the conflict of war that had just started. My parents were being disturbed when they were going to farm and that led to me stopping school.

Edie Lush: 09:41 We call him Zachary. The World Food Program asked us to withhold his real name to protect him from reprisals by the armed group that he used to run with. He was 13 when he joined the militia.

Zachary: 09:56 (Native language) Life was very difficult surviving, getting food and I started having ideas and that’s when I ended up joining an armed the group.

Claude Jibidar: 10:08 You realize that uh, they did go through some terrible times. These were people who are trying to survive

Zachary: 10:19 (Native language) Once I joined the armed group, life was even more difficult than I had thought before, because it was very, very, very difficult to eat and once we would fight every time and not eat anything. And when you left as a group to go out somewhere to fight, you’d leave with a number of ten, and you come back three people and there was even no medicine – we just lived like that.

Claude Jibidar: 10:53 Surviving sometimes means being on the side of those who hold the guns rather than being the victims of those people. Survival is also about, you know, making sure that you can have access to those resources yourself.

Zachary: 11:09 (Native language) Our food we used to get it from the farmers, we would go in people’s farm and take things. We would do looting most of the times and I would stop cars on the road, take what we want, also some money. (Native language) Yeah that’s how we got our food.

Claude Jibidar: 11:30 And that goes on until a time when somebody can come and give you alternatives, give you options. And Zachary, like many others– they had this opportunity to be given options. And um, through those options, you know, change the way they were looking at the future. These are people, if you talk to them, you’ll see that what they want is they want education, they want security, they want to grow up and have their own families care for their own families. I mean things that are as simple you and I, we, we enjoy every day just a bit of peace.

Claude Jibidar: 12:17 There is more than enough to feed everybody. I don’t think that is the point. The point is about a number of people in a number of specific countries and contexts, face challenges that are beyond what they can manage themselves. And that is where I believe, you know, agencies like the World Food Program and all the others really have to come together.

Claudia Edelman: 12:54 In 2016 the world’s humanitarian organizations came together at a very important meeting in Istanbul. I happened to be there and they agreed on this new approach of not just delivering food, but also solving the problems that caused hunger in the first place. Istanbul was massive, a crucial meeting of the minds where leaders agreed for the first time to work on prevention and also work on issues at the same time. Everything is interconnected.

Edie Lush: 13:27 There’s a new phrase for this thinking humanitarian agencies should move from delivering aid to ending need, and I asked Claude about that. So it sounds like peacemaking is the ultimate skill you need to make sure that people can just eat. How do you address that? Do you and your colleagues have the skills you need? Do you fund people who do, how does it work?

Claude Jibidar: 13:52 We call on everybody. We call on people like you. I call on first and foremost on the government to play its role to ensure that its people can have some stability. We try from our own side to stabilize communities. Let me give you an example. One of the conflicts currently hitting that Tanganyika province of the DRC is a conflict between what we call the Tua, which are the peak big community against the Bamtu community. These two communities have been at war fighting each other, killing each other, creating displacement. So what we, WFP, have tried to do jointly with FAO, with other NGO partners like “Search for Common Ground” is to bring these people together and have them work side by side, have them see what advantages they can obtain from this collaboration, what it brings them as opposed to, you know, the conflict that they were pursuing.

Claude Jibidar: 15:19 And if you go to a place called Caballo, you have today through a resilience project being implemented by the World Food Program, FAO, and “Search for Common Ground”, with the support of a number of donors, you have these communities working side by side, they reap the benefit of pooling their resources, their capacities together. This is something that I wish I could scale up and multiplied by 100 because you know what hunger drinks about conflict and conflict generates hunger so it’s a vicious circle. It has to be broken.

Claudia Edelman: 15:59 The scale of the challenge is quite large. With families living in terrible conditions and unable to farm or feed themselves.

Claude Jibidar: 16:09 The new numbers was more than 4.5 million people displaced internally. Being internally displaced in Kasai meant that people had left their homes and for a year, for some of them, people have been surviving in the bush, and when I say surviving in the bush, it means feeding off whatever you could find in the Bush sleeping, wherever you could sleep.

Edie Lush: 16:40 We rejoin rosette that after she and her family returned home, unlike so many who lose children to hunger or illness – or even snakebites – while displaced from their homes, she has all of her family intact.

Rosette: 16:56 (Native language) When we got back, it was very difficult depending on assistance. Everybody was trying to farm in their own different ways. Seeds were difficult to find before that. Until when WFP, the World Food Program and Food and Agriculture Organization came in to support us with the trainings on how to farm and, uh, increase our produce and also provided us seeds and tools.

Edie Lush: 17:29 And so now what are you growing Rosette?

Rosette: 17:34 (Native language) We farm maize, beans, cabbages, eggplants. (Native language) I am able to plant for selling and also eating some in the family and also I’m managing to, to have some money selling my products to pay for basic services and most importantly, uh, the children’s school fees.

Claude Jibidar: 18:05 WFP, FAO helps them, provide them with a bit of food, provide them with a bit of seeds, a few tools and two months after you see Rosette and you see other women chanting, dancing because they have had their first harvest. And that’s one of the stories. But it is the story of I would say all the women that we are meeting in the DRC and that’s why for us it is so important to be behind these people, to support them, to listen to what they want, what they need and do our utmost to be able to bring them because what we are bringing is very little and what they’re fighting, what they’re struggling is so much more, so much more than what we can bring them. That’s why I think the story, the history of the DRC, you know, if this country becomes what it is meant to be, I think it will be thanks to the women of the DRC.

Claudia Edelman: 19:12 As she was rebuilding her own life, Rosette was able to take on a leadership role in a farmer’s group that is part of their resilience building encouraged by the World Food Program. It is called purchase for progress and it helps farmers build their markets and income.

Rosette: 19:32 (Native language) I’m the president of the 11 farmer’s organization. It is very important as the project came because here in our area it’s very difficult for women to be in positions to make decisions. It was always the manner that makes the decision even in the homes, but now I’m part of the team. I am now making, able to make, decision and it makes me very happy. Through this project I have also learnt personally that uh, farming is a, is a very good business. It’s a business because it has enabled me to learn the value of what I produce. I know that food is very important and there is a portion I can keep, I can store for eating and a portion I can sell and it has increased my income in my house. Here, there’s a common saying that says union is power. And through this project, purchase for progress, we have become one. It has brought us together in this conflict situation that we lived before. If I’m in a difficult situation, I know I can go to another person within the group because now we know each other better. I found where I belong. I know that with farming I plan my life better. I know what I produce, my income is and that’s how I live. (Native language)

Claudia Edelman: 21:12 When we come back, we will hear why Zachary decided to lay down his guns and give up being a child soldier. At first, another cool woman from mastercard, Tara Nathan, executive vice president in charge of humanitarian development. Claudi. We met her in Davos, remember indeed, and I spoke to her about the digital aid network. Mastercard is helping to build.

Tara Nathan: 21:37 We see that while philanthropy has a critical role to play, we believe that our technology and our capabilities and leveraging our knowledge of not just digital technologies but of building payments, ecosystems can really have transformational impact. Specific examples, we partnered with a number of different NGOs, the likes of Mercy Corps and Save the Children, World Vision, et cetera, to build something called the Mastercard Aid Network.

Tara Nathan: 22:08 What the Mastercard Aid Network was, was a digital wallet that enabled a beneficiary who was sitting in a remote place, whether in Yemen, in a disconnected environment with no mobile phone coverage, with no power, no electricity, the ability to receive digitally their food and their humanitarians benefits. What this does is because they’re receiving it digitally, it gives that beneficiary the ability to redeem at a local marketplace just like you or I would. It enables them to redeem their benefits for fresh fruits and fresh vegetables and to actually make healthy choices for their families. The other side of that really is what it does for the organizations that service and that serve these beneficiaries, like the NGOs who we partner with.

Tara Nathan: 23:00 And that is it gives them a more cost effective way, a more auditable, a more transparent way to provide these benefits. We look at our digital infrastructure as sort of digital roads that that give access to a number of different services and we have another solution that we are deploying currently across Uganda and Kenya and in India as well, which is giving, for example, smallholder farmers access to Agri buyers. So a small holder farmer typically in a rural environment would be limited as to where they could sell their goods. So their household income will be limited by who comes to their, literally who comes to their farm gate and purchases what their wares are.

Tara Nathan: 23:46 By digitally enabling these smallholder farmers, we give them access to large scale Agri buyers who can now pay much more for their produce or for their beans or for their crops. And eliminate some of the middle men who sit and extract rents in these value chains. We now either eliminate some of that and or create transparency.

Claudia Edelman: 24:10 More from Mastercard and Tara Nathan later. Now let’s return to our conversation about how conflict and famine are tied together. And no one illustrates that better than Zachary who talks about the terror of being a child soldier.

Zachary: 24:32 (Native language) I decided to leave during one mission whereby we, we went to fight and uh, we went 15 and came back seven people. Three of my friends got killed that day and I thought to myself, why should I continue living like this? And uh, if there’s no other life than this, that was when I decided to go and leave the group.

Edie Lush: 25:02 He would have been killed if he’d asked to leave. He fled in the night, made it home, but then had to go into hiding from the very militias that he’d run away from

Claudia Edelman: 25:12 And here is where the coordinated humanitarian efforts to end need gave Zachary a new start. He joined the training program run by a local NGO, focused on rehabilitating former child soldiers. The WFP made sure he was fed while he was learning how to start a new business.

Rosette: 25:37 (Native language) I got registered for the program and they took us to a place where they would train us and they ask us what we wanted to learn. As me, I was passionate about computer science and uh, that’s what I chose to be trained in. (Native language) The place where the educational center was located, was a two hours of walk from where I lived, from my village, my home. I had to wake up very early in the morning around five o’clock to be there at eight o’clock. It was very difficult in the beginning. I was motivated and encouraged through the food that uh World Food Programme was giving out to the former ex soldiers participating, taking part in that training that motivated me, encouraged me to continue and finish the training.

Edie Lush: 26:36 After the training and with the ‘exit kit’- that’s a computer and a printer provided by the program, he was able to open his own business providing printing, scanning, word processing and more.

Zachary: 26:50 (Native language) I opened the place and I make some money out of it. (Native language) With a place I’ve opened I’m also providing training, showing some youth that are interested in computers and computer sciences. And also through that I’ve been able to sensitize former armed group people that were still in there. I talked to them and sensitized them out of it to get out.

Claudia Edelman: 27:21 He also used his experience to discourage other young people thinking of joining an armed group. He had succeeded with seven people who were about to join the militia.

Zachary: 27:34 (Native language) I see myself as a peacemaker and the more knowledge I get, the more I’ll have the ability to help out as many people as possible. (Native language) I dream of a place where we are able to do live free of children going into armed groups like the way I did.

Claudia Edelman: 28:03 Don’t just deliver aid, end the need. We can really see that in the stories of Rosette and Zachary. She has learned to manage and grow an agribusiness and he’s a budding tech entrepreneur.

Edie Lush: 28:15 And a big part of his business Claudia is actually helping people download movies and music. He’s like a kind of one man Netflix, but that’s to say nothing of his new found role working to keep young men and women like him out of the armed militias. I was really moved by my conversation with Zachary and also Claude Jibidar. He and the other humanitarian leaders know what needs to be done in the DRC. If peace and stability can be created, the experts say the DRC has the abundance to produce enough food to feed everyone in Africa, with food left over.

Claude Jibidar: 28:53 I always say as a joke that in the DRC, when you take your tomato, you wash your tomato, you throw the water. You come a month after you have a tomato plant, but it is true. It’s not a joke. I recall back in the 90s we tried to rehabilitate some rail tracks that had not been used for nine months. There were trees, trees had grown in the middle of the tracks. I mean that’s what DRC is about. The potential is there. Everything grows and grows very fast. If an end is brought to the conflict, I would be ready to go back to DRC in a few years’ time. Not to be distributing food, but to be buying food from the DRC and taking that food in a number of other places where they’re hit by drought and by, you know, like Mozambique at the moment with, you know, these floodings because the DRC can feed huge numbers of people. FAO Talks of 2 billion people. This country hosting currently 90 million people, of which at least 20 millions are food insecure. That country could produce enough to feed 2 billion.

Edie Lush: 30:19 Claudia, I don’t know if you’re aware, but we had some behind the scenes drama making this episode. As you can see, conflict is a daily issue in life in the DRC, so it turned out to be a daily issue in recording. Benjamin Anguandia, who was the WFP staff person who also was a translator, was supposed to go interview Rosette and Zachary with me on the other end of the phone and I got a message from his office saying he’s had to turn around because there’s armed militias on the road between his office and where Zachary and Rosette live, so the exact same issues that affect those folks in our episode affected our podcast.

Claudia Edelman: 31:02 I started by telling you Edie when I was working for the UN refugee agency in 2008 no one, I mean no one spoke about the DRC. The focus was in Darfur and in other areas of Africa and the world. But I went out and started measuring and checking media space given to the DRC, how much media was covering it and literally was nothing, was one of the countries that had very little funding and there were 5,000 people killed every day and the number of child soldiers that were in DRC wars, were humongous. So it was almost like the bloodiest place in the world that no one saw. I went out and started knocking doors of different people to try to get some attention to the DRC. So the first door I knocked was Universal Studios. I said, I need you guys to come to the DRC and film something so that we can bring this issue to the table.

Claudia Edelman: 32:00 You can only imagine their faces. When I said that, and they were like, what’s the DRC? But beyond that they committed to actually doing that. And we went afterwards to try to get a soundtrack so that we could do something. So the Rolling Stones donated “Gimme Shelter” and then we went out to Ben Affleck to see whether he could actually direct this video to try to incentivize people to give shelter, to actually understand the DRC was a tragedy that needed to be seen and needed to be corrected. Knowing how much potential DRC had. You can only imagine the amount of times that we tried to take off with the little planes full of equipment trying to land in the DRC was not possible. So I thank everybody for having made that effort and it brought the DRC from the invisible to the visible to some degree.

Edie Lush: 32:49 What did you learn from that?

Claudia Edelman: 32:51 DRC is a place that illustrates that you have to work together on so many fronts at the same time and you know like it’s not that you can work towards education and forget about gender and you have to work on everything at the same time and it’s such a potential land. People understanding leaders, understanding that in order to really accomplish ambitious goals, you have to work on many things at the same time and pretty much work on prevention, but Edie, pretty much what the sustainable development goals or SDGs are. There we go, lexicon number five,

Edie Lush: 33:27 Another bit of jargon.

Claudia Edelman: 33:27 There we go.

Edie Lush: 33:28 Can I, before we move on, I just want to say the next time you go to knock on the door of Ben Affleck and the Rolling Stones I could come to, I can also knock on doors.

Claudia Edelman: 33:38 But Edie, these stories, the stories that we’re telling today, they illustrate hope and how champions are really making a difference and how it is possible to get to that path. Particularly now that we have by far more understanding and a framework of action.

Edie Lush: 33:55 And I think that those stories that we told today, the stories of Zachary and Rosette, they are the champions just as much as Claude is. Those are the folks who are helping to rebuild their country even as it’s still under so much threat.

Claudia Edelman: 34:10 Edie, not to brag, but on Saturday I was awarded the Ellis Island Medal of honor. I hope that you saw that and there were like 100 people that were honored and the one that really got the attention of everybody, because there were only a few people speaking, was David Beasley. He’s like the executive director of the World Food Program. And when he was talking I could just see that people got it, but also had hope and they believed on it and actually they could understand it and see because food is something that is concrete and tangible and gets people together. David was also very good in praising the US for stepping up and while in many other areas, you know, like there’s, there’s some questions about whether the US is following, you know, global affairs here. He reassured that this country was actually stepping up and stepping forward. So that was a massive event.

Edie Lush: 35:04 And I would like to praise you for stepping up in such an amazing dress. Not that it’s all about the dress.

Claudia Edelman: 35:11 And the dress is a beautiful bridge to the facts because it’s not only looking great but also looking smart. So here are the three facts for today.

Edie Lush: 35:21 So fact number one, issues of food and nutrition are not only related to agriculture or trade. Conflict plays a huge role and as a fact, conflict is the most serious cause of acute hunger affecting 75 million people and getting worse.

Claudia Edelman: 35:37 Fact number two, one third of the world’s food is wasted and one person in 10 around the world is under nourished.

Edie Lush: 35:45 Fact number three, 29 million people face acute hunger because of climate change. Most of these people are in Africa but also in Pakistan and Haiti. This is likely to increase and spread in the years to come. And in several countries including the DRC conflict and climate change are reinforcing each other. You can learn more at our website, globalgoalscast.org the links to the latest reports on hunger are there to learn more. You owe to yourself and the future. As Claude Jibidar explained,

Claude Jibidar: 36:18 Maybe think the worLd differently, whatever big the world is whatever happens somewhere will affect all of us. If other people are suffering, there will reach out to where they can have safety, where they can have wealth, where they can survive. So let’s help each other because otherwise we will all be the same problem at some point.

Edie Lush: 36:49 Okay, Claudia, we’ve also got some actions. Action number one, Claudia, take out your phone and if you haven’t already, download, Share the Meal, the World Food Programme, oop, the WFPs app. It lets you pick where you want your help to go. So swipe, till you find the one you want to click on and then you can feel good. I did this yesterday and I was tidying up the script and I chose the DRC because the money I give goes directly to the school feeding programs like the one Rosette sells her crops too.

Claudia Edelman: 37:20 So I’m going to correspond to your action with another phone action. Edie, take out your phone, now, download Olio. You got it?

Edie Lush: 37:31 I got it. I did it.

Claudia Edelman: 37:32 There you go. So snap a picture of something you don’t want in your fridge or cupboard and within a day someone in your neighborhood will come and pick it up. How smart is that? Combat food waste and eliminate hunger locally. That’s awesome. Edie did this all last weekend, didn’t you?

Edie Lush: 37:52 I did and I even got rid of my cranberry sauce that I thought no one but Americans would want and why would they want it in London in May and somebody did. That’s what’s amazing.

Claudia Edelman: 38:03 Download Olio guys.

Edie Lush: 38:05 Action number three, support partners of Global GoalsCast- Slow Food, check out their food for change campaign, which explains how our food choices have a direct impact on the future of the planet.

Claudia Edelman: 38:17 And also support Gastromotiva from our friends in Brazil that feed people in underprivileged areas, reduce food waste by cooking it and also empower youth to be more aware and more conscious about their food.

Edie Lush: 38:34 And here’s the Global GoalsCast lexicon.

Claudia Edelman: 38:40 WFP- World Food Programme

Edie Lush: 38:41 DRC- Democratic Republic of Congo

Claudia Edelman: 38:44 SDGs- sustainable development goals

Edie Lush: 38:49 and NGOs. I don’t even know what they are!

Claudia Edelman: 38:50 Ah you got it! Non-governmental organisations

Edie Lush: 38:50 Non-governmental organisations.

Edie Lush: 38:58 Now Let’s hear more from Tara Nathan, executive vice president at Mastercard. Earlier, she introduced us to the way Mastercard is helping people in remote locations to receive aid digitally and how that in turn is promoting better nutrition. Is all of this being done via the mobile phone?

Tara Nathan: 39:18 We find that in a majority of the context where people living at the base in marginalized communities exist, frankly, have no connectivity or have very intermittent connectivity. And so when those types of contexts, what we’re really trying to figure out, and we’re doing a lot of innovation around is how we can create offline solutions. So offline solutions that are facilitated via what looks like a regular Mastercard that you carry around in your wallet. But now what we do is we leverage that chip card to serve, if you will, as an entry level mobile phone almost because it can store data, it can store biometric capabilities. Wouldn’t it be great if someone can show up at a point of interface at a point of sale and just via their biometrics just via who they are, capture their face and receive the goods and services to which they are entitled.

Edie Lush: 40:12 So what do you think the biggest challenges are with the programs that you get involved with that aim to serve marginalized individuals and communities?

Tara Nathan: 40:25 I think the biggest challenge that we face, frankly, is that the various actors across the humanitarian and development sectors still fail to act in concert. So what does that mean? We have very siloed approaches, both from a solution perspective, from a technology perspective, from a go to market perspective. And what that results in is, high cost for donors, it results in unprofitability for the private sector. It results in substandard solutions for the beneficiaries we seek to serve. So that is the main gap. We’ve made an effort to this end in conjunction with about 35 other partners we launched in Davos actually two years ago. The Smart Communities Coalition and the Smart Communities Coalition is really aimed at doing that. Smart Communities Coalition really aims to say, how do we create the digital roads, the power roads, the connectivity roads that create the infrastructure that can provide those longterm solutions. I think these are the types of ecosystem or joint approaches that are really going to be critical if we are going to solve, you know, what has been repeatedly called out is the several trillion dollar funding gap to achieve the the sustainable development goals.

Edie Lush: 41:56 That was Tara Nathan from Mastercard.

Claudia Edelman: 41:59 And that was a wrap. That’s it for this episode of Global GoalsCast. Thank you so much to all our guests. You can find out more on our website, globalgoalscast.org. Please like and subscribe wherever you get your podcasts and follow us on social media at Global GoalsCasts. Goodbye, Edie Lush.

Edie Lush: 42:18 Goodbye, Claudia

Claudia Edelman: 42:23 Bye!

Michelle: 42:23 Music in this episode was by Neil Hale, Andrew Phillips, Angelica Garcia, Simon James, Katie Crone and Aasgeesg Paliwal. Thanks to our translator, Benjamin Aguandia. This episode was made possible with the support of Mastercard, CBS News Digital, and Harmon, the official sound of Global GoalsCast.


The World is on the Move


“Migrants are the ultimate agent of development,” William Lacy Swing, head of the International Office for Migration, says in this episode of Global GoalsCast. 

Indeed, 13 of the 17 Global Goals are linked to migration. 

“We can’t achieve the Global Goals without encouraging people to move around,” says co-host, Edie Lush.

Decisions made now about migration – by countries and individuals – will likely determine whether the Goals are achieved by the deadline of 2030. “the economic powerhouse that migrants are needs to be nurtured,” says Louise Arbour, Special Representative for International Migration for the United Nations.

In this episode, you will meet Brenda, a migrant from Mexico, who as a fourth grader crossed the Rio Grande at night with little but her parent’s dreams for her. Now, she works as a software engineer for Google. Migration changed her life. But what about a child in Mexico today who might want to follow her path? “One of the largest threats to the global goals is the backlash against migration in major parts of the developed world,” says co-host Claudia Romo Edelman. 

How can the backlash against migrants be eased so the power of migration can drive global development?  Romo Edelman and Lush seek answers from former mayors of San Antonio and Dublin as well as from a leading representative of The Catholic Church.  Fear can’t be addressed without empathy, they suggest. “They really do feel threatened or they really do feel rendered insecure or disoriented,” says the Father Michael Czerny, undersecretary to the “Section for Refugees and Migrants” in the new Vatican department for the Promotion of Integral Human Development.

 “So its worth being sympathetic first of all rather than condemnatory.” An orderly system setting the worlds rules for migration will help reassure people, says Romo Edelman. 

Featured guests

Aqel Biltaji

Aqel Biltaji is the former mayor of Amman. He was appointed by the cabinet of the Greater Amman Municipality in September 2013. He had occupied several positions over the course of his life most famously as a tourism adviser to King Abdullah II and as chief of Aqaba’s city council.


Brenda is actually studying Computer Science at UT-Austin. She is undocumented and was the first in her family to graduate from high school. She has a memorable story about, as a very young child, crossing the border into the United States with her family. At ARS, she participated in a competition at MIT where her group designed and built food storage units that could be used in the desert. She has interned at Google and has a job offer for when she graduates from college.

Brendan Carr

Brendan Carr is an Irish Labour Party politician and member of Dublin City Council. He was Lord Mayor of Dublin 2016/2017.He was first elected to Dublin City Council at the 1999 local elections as a member for the Cabra-Glasnevin local electoral area. He was re-elected in 2004 but did not contest the 2009 local elections. He returned to Dublin City Council representing the Cabra-Finglas area at the 2014 Local Elections. Carr is a SIPTU trade union official.

Henry Cisneros

Henry Cisneros co-founded CityView in 2000 and serves as the firm’s chairman and sits on each of CityView’s Investment Committees. In 1981, Cisneros became the first Hispanic-American mayor of a major U.S. city, San Antonio, Texas, where he was elected to four terms. In 1992, President Clinton appointed him Secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. In 1997, he became president and COO of Univision Communications, the Spanish-language broadcaster. He is a member of the advisory boards of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the Broad Foundation, and was honored by the National Housing Conference as the “Housing Person of the Year”.

Khalid Koser

Formerly deputy director of the Brookings-Bern Project on Internal Displacement, Khalid Koser is the executive director of the Global Community Engagement and Resilience Fund. He is an expert in international migration, refugees, asylum, and internal displacement.

Louise Arbour

Louise Arbour, CC GOQ is a Canadian lawyer, prosecutor and jurist. She is currently the UN Special Representative for International Migration. Arbour was the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, a former justice of the Supreme Court of Canada and the Court of Appeal for Ontario and a former Chief Prosecutor of the International Criminal Tribunals for the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda. From 2009 until 2014, she served as President and CEO of the International Crisis Group. She made history with the indictment of a sitting head of state, Yugoslavian president Slobodan Milošević, as well as the first prosecution of sexual assault as the articles of crimes against humanity.

Michael Czerny

Michael Czerny, S.J., is a Canadian Jesuit who has worked with various Jesuit social justice initiatives for over thirty years. In December 2016,Pope Francis appointed Jesuit Father Michael Czerny as an undersecretary to the “Section for Refugees and Migrants” in the new Vatican department for the Promotion of Integral Human Development. Czerny first served as the founding director of the Jesuit Centre for Social Faith and Justice in Toronto from 1979 to 1989, then as director of the Human Rights Institute at the University of Central America (UCA) in El Salvador. From 1992 to 2002, Czerny served as the Secretary for Social Justice at the Jesuit Curia, and subsequently served as the founding director-coordinator of the African Jesuit Aids Network (AJAN) until 2010. Since 2009 has been an adjutor to the African Bishops Conference and Synod, as well as personal assistant to Cardinal Peter Kodwo, president of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace.

Philippe Legrain

Philippe Legrain is a British political economist and writer. He specializes in global and European economic issues, notably globalisation, migration, the post-crisis world and the euro. A visiting senior fellow at the London School of Economics’ European Institute, he is a former adviser to European Commission president José Manuel Barroso from 2011 to 2014.

William Lacy Swing

William Lacy Swing is the Director General of the International Organization for Migration. He is a diplomat and former United States Ambassador, and United Nations Special Representative of the Secretary-General and Under Secretary General.

Special thanks to


[00:00:01] P1: I could not have had the opportunities I had if I had been over there. I will not have gotten to intern for Google or even have a job with them now.

[00:00:11] P2: Yes. The world is on the move. And we will see more of that.

[00:00:15] P3: The economic powerhouse that migrants are I think has to be nourished.

[00:00:20] P4: Am deeply concerned over the policies of some national leaders are taking at the moment putting disparate xenophobic chauvinistic view of society is going to damage the world in general.

[00:00:43] CG: Welcome to the Global Goals cast. The podcast that explores if we can change the world. I’m Edie lush Lush and I am Claudia Romo Edelman. We’re happy to have you here. And this episode we’re going to look at migration. Why is it essential? And how the backlash against migration is the direct threat to the Global Goals set by the United Nations, right after this.

[00:01:06]P5: In every episode we will give you the sticky facts and figures that you will want to share with your friends over coffee. All data is brought to you courtesy of SASS, our official analytics and data visualization partners. And you can go to our website at GlobalGoalsCast.org to find even more data visualizations and maps. We love you SASS.

[00:01:15] EL: Welcome back. On this episode we’re going to talk about an issue close to my heart and Claudia’s and that’s migration. We’re both migrants, we and our children have benefited enormously because we are able to move from country to country. For me it’s the U.S., then the Bahamas, back to the U.S. became an internal migrant moving from the West Coast to the East Coast, and now I live in the UK and Claudia, you went from Mexico to..

[00:01:41] CG: Well practically everywhere.

[00:01:43] EL: Enough about us, but we’re going to look at migration through a very special lens today and that’s not just the lens of the good migration has done for us. And the millions of other individuals and families or even the really familiar discussions of the desperate people fleeing the world’s most horrific troubled spots.

[00:02:00] CG: Now we want to highlight how different the world would look like 12 years from now depending on the decisions about whether we close off migration, we close the borders or we build bridges and whether we encourage a migration that is more orderly and systemic or we just want to build walls.

[00:02:17] EL: Migration is baked into the Sustainable Development Goals. Here’s William Lacy Swing, the director of the International Organization for Migration explaining the connection.

[00:02:26] LS: 3.5% of the world’s population are international migrants. That’s the 244 million as I mentioned. But these 3.5 percent of the world’s population are producing 9 percent of global GDP and that is 4 percent more than they would have produced if they stayed at home. So when people ask me what’s the relationship between migration and development, I say migrants are the ultimate agents of development. 

[00:02:53] CG: To show the power of migration in a few minutes we’re going to introduce you to Brenda who we love because she’s such an example about a typical story of a girl that crossed the Rio Grande from Mexico into the U.S. when she was nine. And with nothing but her parents dreams of a better future for her. So you will see how that arrival has been affected not only her but also her family and both Mexico and the U.S. She is earning money, sending money home etc. So we will talk to you about what could happen over the next 12 years if the next Brenda, some nine years old in Mexico today, stop from repeating her journey by the backlash against migration.

[00:03:40] EL: 12 years of course is the year 2030 and that’s a year that the U.N. has set to achieve 17 global goals to end extreme poverty and encourage growth in ways that don’t wreck the environment. Our job on this podcast is to hold those goals up to the light and ask what it’s going to take to achieve them, highlight successes and call out threats. It actually surprised me to see how many of the Global Goals were linked it to migration. 13 out of 17. Which leads me to think that we can’t achieve the global goals, without encouraging people to move around and from where I live in the UK, the opposite seems to be happening.

[00:04:18] CG: One of the largest threats of the Global Goals for me is the backlash against migration in major parts of the developed world, meaning the countries that used to receive these migrants. I spoke to Henry Cisneros who is the former mayor of San Antonio about this.

[00:04:43] HC: At a time when the wage structure has changed, the number of jobs has reduced, the nature of industries has changed, populations are getting older less secure economically and even in physical capacities. To see new comers with their different accents, with their strange names, with their different complexions, with large families it’s no doubt going to create major tensions.

[00:05:12] CG: Then I met Father Michael Czerny the representative of the Holy See to the United Nations when I was in Puerto Vallarta actually during that Global Compact for migration.

[00:05:22] FM: First is to understand and even to sympathize with the feelings of fear, of insecurity of bewilderment, of frustration that people do feel. In a certain sense their reactions are not completely baseless or irrational, they really do feel threatened or they really do feel rendered insecure or disoriented. And so it’s, it’s been sympathetic first of all rather than just condemnatory.

[00:05:48] CG: So why these internal political fights within certain countries a threat to the Global Goals. To answer that we have to talk first with an expert or two about how migration works a sudden economic force, then it will be so much easier to show how the whole ambition of the global goals could be the railway by political efforts to curtail migration, and I think that the best person I spoke to about is my new boss.

[00:06:11] EL: Not just because she’s your new boss.

[00:06:13] CG: Not just because she my new boss. She’s is the smartest & she is a representative of the secretary general for Migration in 2018. She is in charge of making the Global Compact for migration a reality. And this is Louise Harper.

[00:06:26] LH: They are today as we speak in the world about two hundred and fifty seven million migrants. This is people who live, have moved and lived for more than one year outside their country of birth or or nationality. They are overwhelmingly migrant workers. They have a rate of employment higher than that of native population. Forty eight percent of migrants are women and they’re not all just a member of the family of a man. They are millions of women who are migrant workers in their own rights and the economics are mind boggling. Migrants spend about 85 percent of their income in the host country and the 15 percent that they send home, today represents 600 billion dollars a year. About 450 of that going to developing countries. That amount is three times the amount of official development aid that wealthier countries send to developing countries so the economic powerhouse that migrants are I think has to be nourished and we have to capitalize on that force.

[00:07:34] EL: So now have a listen to William Lacy Swing doing a little more myth busting.

[00:07:38] LS: The mythology is that migrants are coming to take our jobs when in point of fact migrants are the ultimate development agent, they are actually in most cases actually producing jobs in the SME’s, they come in and they end up themselves creating businesses and hiring people.

[00:07:59] El: So that’s the big picture. But as a journalist, I always want to have the human example of what an economist says. So now let’s introduce Brenda. She’s a real migrant just like us. She arrived in the US aged nine from Mexico and here she is speaking about her parents.

[00:08:14] Br: My mom was a secretary at Nissan in Mexico City. My mom only has a high school degree because she did have me very young. And my step dad worked as a driver for the vice president of a company. He was any way have a high school degree. When they moved here, my mom was actually out of the job for about six months when they moved, she couldn’t find anything, she didn’t speak the language of course. But my stepdad worked in construction for a really really long time, after that my mom started working at a dental lab where they make like fake teeth and stuff like that,  just helping out like minor tasks. And they worked at Wendy’s during that time, they were both working at Wendy’s & construction, they started dabbling with cameras. And just like going to their friends like birthday parties & like taking a little video and editing a little bit & my mom teaching herself how to edit online. So eventually they were able to get into a full grown business for video photographers.

[00:09:19] EL: So they were self-sufficient from the minute they got to the US. We’re going to hear more about them shortly but first of all have a listen to my friend Felipe McGrane. He’s a journalist economist and author and he had this to say.

[00:09:30] FM: Migration is also beneficial to the country to which migrants move, for the migrants come and do jobs that either the locals don’t want to do or are not able to do. They boost enterprise, creativity and innovation, widen the range of skills and ideas in the economy, and research for the IMF shows for example that an increase of the migrant [INAUDIBLE] population by 1 percent tends to boost productivity and income levels of the existing population by 2 percent. So, that’s really really significant. And if you think about it migration is a bit like starting a business. It’s a risky venture and it takes a hard work to make it a payoff and it’s a natural way to get ahead if you arrive in a country with a few contacts or without an established career.

[00:10:17] Unknown: Global Goals cast has the most incredible network of partners that contribute with ideas, stories and evidence points to bring you the most relevant interesting and compelling goals Cast content. Special thanks to the International Office for Migration for this episode.

[00:10:36] EL: We heard earlier about Brenda’s parents and how they moved to America worked multiple jobs before setting up their own business. The small and medium sized enterprises that William Lacy Swing talked about.

[00:10:46] CG: Do you remember that point that about remittances.

[00:10:47] EL: Exactly.

[00:10:48] CG: I absolutely loved that aspect of the migration. Those are the new figures that get me going that was that I want to repeat to my friends and here’s what Brenda’s parents do for their relatives in Mexico.

[00:11:00] BR: They send back money to my grandmother. She’s getting older and I really want to hold a full time job in the morning and stuff like that. So she definitely needs money. My stepdad also has two other kids. So he sends them money. They will have kids as well. So it’s basically the people that my parents send money to my grandma and my step dad’s two kids.

My grandma basically raised me along with my mom. So for my grandma it was really hard not only to lose her daughter but also me. My mom was also a huge huge support to my grandmother growing up just in terms of helping with the house and the bills and all that stuff. So it was a really big big hit for my grandmother. I think mostly and also having my step siblings foster dad who’s here now so they are better off economically that if he wasn’t here but they also don’t have their dad. My step sister finished high school and she started going to culinary school but she did not finish. And my step brother was going to college for electrical engineering but dropped out once he had his kids so he was almost, he did not finish.

[00:12:23] EL: So there’s quite a contrast between Brenda and her stepsister.

[00:12:26] BR: I started in the fourth grade. Now I did not know any English whatsoever. So it was really hard concession just trying to learn a new language. And just the shock of the culture shock that you have to adjust to all what is just being alone right not having any friends, any family besides your parents. I guess moving around was a big thing for us to we didn’t have a car, it’s moving around and speaking the language. And even the school bus for me it was a completely new concept. I had never been on the school bus. This is the first time I got on it I didn’t really know what to expect. On your word to get off for anything. See those little things like that. Come fifth grade, there was a couple of schools that came to talk to us about applying for their schools for middle school. But I decided to go with Ann Richards. My English was still lacking a little bit. So that mean I got put in special classes for my first year of sixth grade which really helped me improve my English. And by the end I was practically the same as my classmates which was great. They also provided a lot of support for what I was in high school for summer camps and things so I kind of discovered what programming was and knew what it was, but I’ve never done it but I thought it was so interesting. And also we didn’t have a computer science class, and with the help of some teachers who were able to make a class which really helped me on later decide what I wanted to do in college. So fast forward I graduated from Ann Richards and then I now attend the University of Texas at Austin and I’m studying computer science and I’m actually graduating in two weeks. That’s great.

[00:14:14] EL: The Ann Richards School which we heard about in the first episode of The Global Goals cast helped inspire her to become a software engineer. And we know how rare those female computer programmers are..

[00:14:24] CG: Which would they shouldn’t be. But I have hopes that actually that’s going to change in the next years.

[00:14:30] EL: Her interest in programming led to a really exciting opportunity and after a nerve racking process with things called host managers..

[00:14:37] CG: That sounds like the [INAUDIBLE]

[00:14:39] EL: Or something like that. It’s now a reality.

[00:14:45] BR: Got an interview with one of the project for Google and they got told no and I was like, Great. Yes, about two weeks later I had another interview with another manager and they also told me no. But on the last day that I was supposed to be a host matching, my recruiter got back to me like OK I have one more person that wants to interview you. This is the last chance you have, It was like, OK. So I talked to that manager and luckily he said yes. And he was right like the day before my birthday which is like awesome.

I was so happy and in the end that’s how I got my, my internship. And I went to California for three months and got an offer to come back as an intern again and then intern in Boston and then working in the Boston. As a software engineer and then going to working up for their Google Photos team.

[00:15:38] EL: And I asked Brenda how she felt about working in the same area as her parents.

[00:15:42] BR: It was actually funny because when I was about 16 & I was tried to take photographs of my parents and helping them with their business. I tell my parents that I did not want to do that. I did not like it. So I was going to college to do something else. So, then I got my offer letter from Google with like the photos team, I called my mom and was like it’s just fate, I can’t get away from it.

[00:16:06] CG: Edie, I want to hear how Brenda originally go to America.

[00:16:10] EL: Here is where the story takes a twist.

[00:16:13] BR: My parents both tried coming here illegally. They got rejected just because the way the immigration status say my parents obviously didn’t have any money, they didn’t have a job set up here. Nothing. They were also trying to get me illegally but my parents weren’t able to do it. And this has to do with the fact that I did not owe my biological father but whose names in the birth certificate. So in order for me to get a passport as a child you need both signatures from both parents. My step dad actually came to the states first & he saved lot of money so he paid the people that passes what we call a [INAUDIBLE] a lot a lot of money. There will be a very long journey. So basically we went up to [INAUDIBLE] so that state borders Texas by bus, we took a bus there, Mexico City and we got there. We left Mexico City around 11:00 p.m. got there about 3:00 p.m. the following day, and we went like this car dealership the place where they’re like asked us things and stuff like that. So we stay there for the night and they come back first early in the morning, and basically I remember just run run run, get to the river, take off your clothes put us like this loading thing. Get us cross the river run run run some more. We’re doing this in June. So it was crazy hot. You get into a car told us to stay down. Once a house and they made us wash our clothes we ended up having to leave everything we had on us. And then they took us into another car at that time, they separated my mom and myself. My mom originally never wanted to get separated from me just in case anything happened. But they separated us once we are already in the states and past the checkpoints are past normally like if I was somebody else and my mom was sitting in a car to made it to Austin.

[00:18:20] EL: So, Brenda is currently in limbo.

[00:18:21] BR: My future just a little bit uncertain at the moment. Come August in terms of my immigration status, I am a Dokka student. So..

[00:18:29] EL: Brenda illustrates the power of migration as well as the drama and the risk. As a fifth grader she forwarded the Rio Grandey into Texas from Mexico because her parents wanted a better life for her. She found the Ann Richards School named for a crusading female governor of Texas. They guided her into speaking English. They taught her math and coding. They center on to Texas’s great public university, and now to a job at Google. However she’s in the U.S. illegally. She had no documents to enter that night, she crossed the Rio Grandey and she still doesn’t. I think we know that Brenda is going to have a happy ending. She’s already received the biggest benefits of migration. Her education, her training, her multilingualism, her job with a global company and the money she and her family has been sending back to Mexico. Even if the anti-immigrant politics in the U.S. force her to leave the USA, Google has said she can have a job in Canada or Mexico. In fact when I spoke to her, her biggest fear is whether her Spanish is good enough.

[00:19:40] CG: I know, that’s a big problem for Hispanics. I can testify myself. What I want to know is what about the Brenda of today, a fifth grade girl in Mexico today, will be Brenda’s age in 2030. She’s one whose life will be one of a million life stories that will add up to whether the world achieves the global goals or fall short. Will she get to come to Texas and attend the Ann Richards School? Will the backlash against migrants lead with her options and the options of all those others trying to make it and to have better lives? So I spoke to Lord Mayor of Dublin about what’s at stake.

[00:20:18] BC: Deeply concerned over the policies of some national leaders are taking at the moment and I think disparity, center phobic chauvinistic view of society is going to damage the world in general.

[00:20:32] CG: So we’ve got a variety of people that spoke to us about migration. We heard the personal story that girl that crossed the mayor of the city, the father from the Vatican, Louise Arbour. My sense and I do have a sort of like a strong opinion on this is at migration in general is positive. I think that the speed of migration will increase, and the third part is that it has to be regulated. I understand the fear of the other angle, the receiving countries, or the people from the receiving countries, who are scared and are based on perception rather than data. But it is also fair to say, yes, if you’re used to having a community where you have your friends and your neighbours, and your habits and so on, when you go to the supermarket and you can no longer find the bread that you buy on Sunday’s because now you find tortillas, it is a shock. It is a cultural change and you have to actually be realistic about how do you manage that so that it’s integrated and I do think that it is an issue of putting the rules of the game to make it regulated for everybody.

[00:21:57] EL: So and from my perspective I’d say from being from California and seeing tech leader after tech leader say we’ve got to have migration. You can’t if we don’t open the doors to have people from from Europe from India actually we won’t be able to create the solutions for the technology that will solve the world’s problems so that’s sort of one part of what I see. And I actually see from when I’ve lived in London how much has changed and how much the neighborhood has changed, in my neighborhood there never used to be a Polish grocery store. Now there’s loads of Polish grocery stores. I think you can great it with fear or I think you can greet it with enjoying the multiculturalism but I’d love to hear from you is when you were in Puerto Vallarta at the beginning of the Global Compact. What are the ways that people have started talking about how you build this framework, where countries talk about, how many folks come in and out and how does that sort of structure start to look?

[00:22:50] CG: Do you mind If I actually just like say what the global compact for migration is once again?

[00:22:56] EL: I would like you to say what the Global Compact for Migration? Could you please tell us what the Global Compact for Migration is?

[00:23:03] CG: Thank you for asking. So the Global Compact for migration, it will be the Sustainable Development Goals type of treaty for migration. It is trying to make the rules of the game to make migration regulated orderly & systematic with the approval of one hundred ninety three countries. Ideally it will be done and launched by September 2018 with a huge summit in December 19 in Morocco where I hope to go and afterwards go on celebrate in Marrakech. I say that’s a plan.

[00:23:36] EL: I think that’s a good plan, I know you like a plan.

[00:23:39] CG: I love plans. So keeping the global compact for migration, I mean having these incredible number of countries and not every country came and there was one that pulled out the last minute not the only one but the important one and I thought it was going to be like a party pooper. Just like your [INAUDIBLE]. Actually the show went on and it was the first conversation that I saw turning around an issue and turning the tone from a conversation that people felt I’m not going to be talking about it and there were more than 2000 people in that conversation. A big part of this problem is that we don’t understand the phenomenon enough even if it’s historic, you don’t know the points, you don’t know when people leave and why they leave. How is their journey, what is their arrival and when they return. We need to understand what is the state of a person when they decide to leave their home. Can you imagine what has to go through your mind when you are leaving, what kind of like emotional, psychological push you need to have and I don’t know whether we were either quantifying it or understanding it enough, we’re not understanding the risks of the journey when someone is leaving to get to another destination. When people arrive to a place I think that that’s where the focus has to be, integrated not integrated, good for society, not good for society and so on. But also it’s hard when people try to go back home you know.

[00:25:06] EL: But even just in terms of folks who decide to move to be an economic migrant. I think you could possibly argue that I was an economic migrant I wanted some adventure. I wanted to see what life was like somewhere else. I had a huge opportunity to go to and when I decided to move to the UK.

[00:25:20] CG: You too look like an adventurous.

[00:25:21] EL:  I, I seriously adventurous.

[00:25:25] CG: You like, like non-stop migrant [INAUDIBLE]. But the one thing I think that I also found fascinating about Puerto Vallarta, I do think that migration is the topic for 2018 to understand better not because it’s my new job but the UN working on migration only. But it is because by trying to understand the phenomena we came up with incredible numbers. I was surprised about the remittances numbers that [INAUDIBLE]

[00:25:53] EL: Incredible.

[00:25:55] CG: It just like crazy. When having four hundred and fifty billion dollars sent from..

[00:26:00] EL: developing country to developing country.

[00:26:03] CG: Exactly.

[00:26:04] EL: Three times the amount

[00:26:06] CG: So the question is if you stop migration who is going to do you have to increase foreign aid.

[00:26:11] EL: Right

[00:26:13] CG: Or who is going to do the increasing foreign aid.

[00:26:14] EL: Right

[00:26:15] CG: Because there is..

[00:26:15] EL: In this political planet, who’s going to increase the foreign aid. Okay so it’s interesting you said that our country didn’t show up, the United States didn’t show up or I thought it was really interesting was that some of the U.S. states said they wanted to be part of the global compact.

[00:26:28] CG: And another really interesting phenomena about migration is that cities are taking that power because they can actually establish the rules of the game and cities in general are the ones that are receiving migrants that are producing with migrants that are you know like..

[00:26:46] EL: And being open to migrants to.

[00:26:47] CG: Exactly, so that’s going to be a space to watch.

[00:26:51] EL: So as always we’re going to leave you with some facts you can share and actions you can take. If you’re talking about migration at lunch here’s three facts you can share.

[00:27:00] CG: So add up all migrants in the world and they will be the fifth largest country. Two hundred and fifty five million people. Brazil and Indonesia put together.

[00:27:13] EL: Migrants send 450 billion dollars home to developing countries each year. That’s three times the amount those countries receive in international aid.

[00:27:23] CG: And migrants add 4 percent more to the global economy each year than they would have, if they would have stayed home.

[00:27:30] EL: So of course all this talk without action is meaningless. So, we want to leave you, 

our dear listeners with some actions you can take to be part of changing the world. If you want to do more, go to the action section of our web site – GlobalGoalscast.org where our partners from action button will help you get engaged.

[00:27:49] CG: Thank you for listening. Our next episode is live from the World Economic Forum in Davos where we will have an exclusive first interview with Father and Son explorers Rob and Barney Swan after returning from their six hundred mile trek from the South Pole using only renewable energy walking for 60 days.

[00:28:10] EL: And if you want to make sure you never miss a show, subscribe to us at our website- GlobalGoalsCast.org.  iTunes or wherever you get your podcasts and please follow us on Twitter Instagram and Facebook at Global Goals cast. We’ll give you the latest news and developments.

[00:28:26] CG: That was Edie Lush and I am Claudia Romo Edelmen. Thank you for being with us until next time. Bye Bye.

Thanks to all our U.N. and NGO partners. We are also grateful for the support of Hub Culture, Freuds Communication, SAS, Saatchi Saatchi and CBS News Digital.

Special thanks to Peter Gabriel for our amazing music during this episode.

Want to change the world? Educate girls


Want to change the world? Educate Girls.

Education is the “key” and “the foundation” to improving the world, according to the United Nations. Episode 2 of Global GoalsCast explores the power of education, particularly educating girls. “Keeping girls in school makes a huge difference,” says co-host Edie Lush. “This is probably the single most powerful step the world can take to improve not only girls’ lives but the lives of their families and countries”.

Number 4 of the 17 Global Goals is to “ensure inclusive and quality education for all and promote lifelong learning” by 2030. Co-host Claudia Romo Edelman doesn’t mince words. “It’s such a huge task”, she says. Today there are 120 million children between 6 and 15 who do not attend school at all and millions more whose schooling has failed to teach them to read, write or do basic math. Romo Edelman says there will be no grand solution. Instead, she says, educating every child must happen school by school and student by student. “A thousand small steps that add to the big dream”.

Lush and Romo Edelman visit two schools to show this. The first school serves some of the poorest children in India, the Adavasi. Toilets, textbooks and uniforms are needed just to keep the girls in school. Faced with that struggle, bigger goals are hard to come by. “No one ever asked me what my dreams were”, one mother told Dr. Jeannette Monosoff Haley, co-founder of the Shree Nityananda Trust, which supports the school. In Austin, Texas, we visit a school created to inspire and guide girls to dream big and set high goals. This school, Lush says, has what Monosoff Haley wishes she could offer for her students.

Dali & Finn Schonfelder

Traveling to rural India each year with her family, Dali and Finn made many friends there. One year, they returned to find that the government had stopped paying for some of their friends’ uniforms after they reached 12 years old. Since students were forbidden to attend school without uniforms, those who could not afford uniforms could no longer receive an education. Together Dali and Finn co-founded Nalu to break the poverty cycle and give students of all socio-economic levels the opportunity to stay in school. Dali oversees the process from start to finish, first designing the uniforms, and then traveling to India to lead their distribution.

In a pilot program, Nalu made and provided more than 1,300 school uniforms to children living in extreme poverty, resulting in a 78% increase in enrollment. Not only are more students attending school, but academic performance has increased and teenage pregnancy in the village has decreased. Further supporting the community, Nalu employs local tailors to manufacture the uniforms. To ensure the sustainability of their impact, Dali and Finn developed a business model by selling clothing and accessories. In the coming year, Nalu’s business revenue will provide 20,000 uniforms per month by 2020, creating long-term impact for rural India.


Dennis (pronounced Denise) will be the first in her family to graduate from college. She was the Boys & Girls Club Youth of the Year for Texas. She also was awarded the Bonner Scholarship, which is based on community service, and she was involved with the National Hispanic Institute at the state level.

Ellen Richards

Ellen Richards is the Chief Strategy Officer at Integral Care where she oversees team responsible for strategic direction for the organization, resource development, external and internal communications, government affairs and community outreach/diversity. Ellen is also the Chair Emeritus for the Ann Richards School Foundation, a foundation that raises funds and forms partnerships to advance education, empower young women and create opportunities for girls who may otherwise be held back from achieving their full potential.

Jeanette Monosoff-Haley

Dr. (Mrs.) Jeanette Monosoff-Haley is the Co-Director of the Shree Nityananda Education Trust.  She has completed a Doctorate in Clinical Psychology, a Masters in Clinical Psychology and a Masters in Transpersonal Counseling.. For over twenty five years, Dr. Haley worked as a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and Individual Psychotherapist in her Private Practice, at the Indian Health Service (a US Federal agency) in Taos, New Mexico, and at a Geriatric Mental Health Clinic in San Francisco. Together with her husband, she volunteers to co-manage the Fire Mountain Retreat Center as well as work closely with the TMA Indian partners and the various social work projects.


Malala Yousafzai is a Pakistani activist for female education and the youngest Nobel Prize laureate. She is known for human rights advocacy, especially the education of women and children in her native Swat Valley in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, northwest Pakistan, where the local Taliban had at times banned girls from attending school. Her advocacy has grown into an international movement.

Sruthi Palaniappan

Sruthi Palaniappan is from Cedar Rapids and a student of the Harvard University is a big supporter of Clinton, the first woman to be nominated as a presidential candidate by a major political party. Sruthi made history when she was given an opportunity to represent Iowa during roll call votes.


will.i.am, born William Adams, is a multi-faceted entertainer and creative innovator, a seven-time Grammy Award winner, and founder of I AM ™.  He is well-known for his work with The Black Eyed Peas, who have sold 31 million albums and 58 million singles worldwide,  will.i.am advocates regarding the importance and power of a good education through his i.am angel foundation.  As part of will.i.am’s philanthropic commitment, he hosts his annual TRANS4M Conference and Benefit Concert during Grammy Week.  Recognized and honored by numerous industry organizations, will.i.am was named a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum in March, 2013, in recognition for his role as a STEM education advocate.  He is the recipient of multiple Grammy Awards, a Latin Grammy Award, an Emmy Award, a CLIO Award, two NAACP Image Awards, a VH1 Do Something Award, the BMI President’s Award and a 2008 Webby Award.

Priti & Nalu Photos

Special thanks to


[00:00:00] P1: She could not understand what that even means. What does it mean to have a dream? One lady is literally says ‘no one’s ever asked me what my dream was’.

[00:00:09] P2: She just looked into my eyes and then she closed her eyes and she just smelt it. She smelt the uniform and it was like the first new thing that she’d ever smelt.

[00:00:18] P3: To be able to know that I was capable of achieving more than what society considered this is what someone who falls under this category can achieve.

[00:00:29] P4: Education is not a privilege. Education is a right. Education is piece.

[00:00:45] EL: Welcome to the Global GoalCast.

[00:00:49] CG: The podcast that explores if we can change the world.

[00:00:51] EL: I’m Edie Lush.

[00:00:52] CG: And I am Claudia Romo Edelman. We’re happy to have you here.

[00:00:57] EL: Yeah! This episode we’re going to talk about educating girls, two stories talking about how keeping girls in school changes their life and so much more.

[00:01:04] CG: Right after this.

[00:01:05] AD: In every episode, we will give you the sticky facts and figures that you will want to share with your friends over coffee. All data is brought to you courtesy of SAS. Our official analytics and data visualization partners. And you can go to our website at GlobalGoalsCast.org to find even more data visualizations and maps. We love you SAS.

[00:01:29] CG: Our job in the Global GoalsCast is to tell you the stories of one of the most remarkable combined efforts in human history. 193 nations have set goals from 12 years from now everything from ending extreme poverty to fighting climate change and making the world a better place and making it for all. So with those ambitious goals why are we focusing this episode to education on girls Edie?

[00:01:55] EL: I remember the first time I met you in fact you said that if you scratch the surface of the goals, what you see is they are all super dependant on each other. So we’re going to be talking a lot about that. We’re also going to talk about how hard it is to reach these goals and how a failure in one goal or one area can undermine reaching all the other areas.

[00:02:15] CG: They are so connected.

[00:02:16] EL: So we’re going to start with education in particular educating girls because this is probably the most single most powerful step the world can take to improve not only girls’ lives but the lives of their families and actually the economies of countries. UN is called education the key the foundation to all sorts of other goals like health, prosperity and amazingly even tolerance and peace.

[00:02:40] CG: The goal overall within the Sustainable Development Goals is to provide by 2030 free education for everyone on primary and secondary school is such a huge task, if you think about it. And if you think where we are right now, we have 120 million children between 6 and 15 years old that are out of school and that’s a huge challenge.

[00:02:58] EL: More girls are in school now than in the past. There are still more likely than boys to drop out or be kept out of school and still too often families favor boys over girls when they’re investing in education, even though research shows keeping girls in school makes a huge difference.

[00:03:18] CG: It is also regional and a lot of these challenges happen in regions for example sub-Saharan Africa and South and West Asia. And just in those areas, if every woman in those parts of the world would have a secondary education, child marriage would be reduced by two thirds, earnings of the women would rise, early pregnancy until Labor would be reviewed, you get it, I mean it’s a cycle. Like you would actually start changing the vicious cycle into a virtuous cycle. So here’s Malala Yousafzai who’s an activist and Nobel Prize laureate explaining the situation.

[00:03:54] MY: Education is not a privilege. Education is a right. Education is peace. Dear world leaders promise us that you will keep your commitments and invest in our future. Promise that every child will have the right to safe, free and quality primary and secondary education.

[00:04:23] CG: That was Malala talking at the United Nations. She is probably the most inspiring girl to girls. There is no doubt that girls know Malala and want to help and have become activists on education because of her.  So the world is very long way from educating every child from today. But there is one thing that is clear there is not one grand solution that we can take and think OK, so if we would do one thing, it will happen. I think that we have to realize that for progress over the next 12 years in which we have to commit to achieve these goals has to be done one by one, student by student, school by school, a thousand small steps that would add to the big dream.

[00:05:17] EL: OK, so we’ve got two stories that show this. Two girls one’s from India, the other one is from Texas.

[00:05:22] CG: A Hispanic by the way.

[00:05:13] EL: And there you go. Both of them are now finishing college and that is thanks to some inventive efforts and actually quite a few efforts. Lots of thousand small steps on either side that kept them in the school. First of all, we’re going to go to India and talk about Priti and her rural school and things that I took for granted, the things that my kids take for granted having textbooks, having a toilet and having a new uniform, having a uniform at all make a huge world of difference. And actually you can see pictures of Priti in her school on our Web site. That’s GlobalGoalsCast.org.

[00:05:57] CG: Which is very cool.

[00:05:59] EL: So I spoke to Dr Jeanetta Monosoff Haley. She’s the co-founder of the Shree Nityananda Education Trust. She’s originally from Oregon. Actually she went to St. Mary’s in the Bay Area which is very near to where I’m from. She’s actually she moved to Taos, New Mexico. She’s been living in India for the last few years. I spoke to her about going to school in the tribal areas and Jeannetta works with the Adivasi people. Now these are a collection of tribal people who are some of the poorest in India.

[00:06:30] CG: Yeah!

[00:06:31] EL: They live under or close to the definition for extreme poverty, the $1.90 a day range –  which UN Goal number 1 commits the world to eradicating.

[00:06:39] JMH: Sarasvati secondary school has about 90% Adivasi and these are people who are very forgotten by the Indian government. Some of them are half farm that may be a couple acres at the most. So their schooling is substandard compared to anything in the city. And the children have to do their chores before they ever go to school. So the girls particularly are up maybe four or five with mom in the morning to wash clothes and bathe and cook before they ever get to go to school.

[00:07:13] So it’s a really tough life for these tribal children. The cost of a uniform, you know, might be twelve hundred rupees which can be very expensive for them and the girls might not get their parents to buy them a uniform because why should we educate our girls because they’re just going to get married and move in with another family. It’s not worth the investment to educate her. Saraswati secondary school, when we first met them, there were 200 students and there were no bathrooms for the girls. So what that means is the girls either have to hold it or they go home in the middle of the day to pee or they go in a bush.  So a lot of girls drop out because there’s no bathroom. The other thing we notice is thw school only had five sets of textbooks for these 200 children or per class of 60 I guess it was. So we did a fundraising to buy them books so we bought enough books so every ten children had a book to share. I mean how can you study math without a textbook. I mean, how can you study anything without bringing your book home or at least being able to stay after school an hour and study.

One of the biggest problems here in the tribal area is that the girls are getting pregnant early because the fathers want to marry them off and get them off of their dining table and get them off into the new table and they might be getting married at 15-16. Now that’s against the law, but out here in the tribal area there’s no police, you know there’s none of the services we’re so used to in the West. So these kids just fall through the cracks.  Having a baby when you’re 15, 16, 17, 18 your own body has not matured. You’re not producing the healthiest baby you can. So there is a drive to try and keep girls in school so they won’t have go off and get married and have a baby before they’re ready at least till 18 is considered the minimum.

So many of these women, they’ve never had a dream. One lady literally said no one’s ever asked me what my dream was.  For Priti who is 16, 17 at that point, it’s just not a concept about having a future. Particularly if you come from a poor family. Maybe the dream is she is going to have a nice husband and a nice mother-in-law and maybe they won’t be too mean to her.

[00:09:40] CG: So these are some of the poorest people in India and into the scene work two international kids who came up with a creative way to help these children.

[00:10:03] EL:They were visiting with their parents who are volunteering at a school Jeanetta’s trust was involved in.

[00:10:08] CG: And those are Finn & Dali from Nalu.

[00:09:59] FS:  As they were like volunteering as chiropractors and like, chiropractic and adjusting all these kids, me and my sister were making friends on the playground with these kids cause you’re in the very school they were at.  And we just loved being and visiting with their friends and they love chiropracting so much and we went back there every single year. But one year when we came back, we realized some of friends were actually gone. So we did some research and we asked the teachers and other kids and they said that they were gone because they simply didn’t have a school uniform. So, that’s how we started Nalu actually because we simply just want to help our kids get back to school and get their school uniform.

DS: Yeah, as a 13 year old girl I just couldn’t believe that something so simple and so ordinary like a uniform had such a crazy huge measurable effect and an impact.

FS: I could really see myself in these kids.  I couldn’t imagine these kids not being in school or being in a dangerous situation. This is something we simply did not like & we were going to change this and this has just turned into our passion.

DS: What now it really comes down to that it really does break the poverty cycle, you know? You have uniform and you can go to school. For every four products that we sell we give one school uniform.

[00:11:32] FS: Four for one.

[00:09:59] DS: Yeah! Four for one. But it’s like, you know, letting the way that you live, being the way that you give at the same time. It’s kind of our motto I guess. You know, you should be able to not have to go out of your way to give you know, you shouldn’t have to go on some website to donate to this organization or that organization. You should just be able to live your normal life wear the clothes that you like to wear, eat the food that you like to food…

FS: Brush your teeth every morning.

DS: …live your normal life and at the same time be able to give back, you know? This is where the ‘Buy One, Give One’ sort of comes in place, where you get a product that you want to wear, say a shirt or a cap or a backpack and at the same time you give children the opportunity to stay in school.

FS: …It’s that simple.

DS; The very first school uniform was given to a girl called Priti. And she was about to leave school because she couldn’t afford to pay for a uniform and she’d never owned anything new before in her whole entire life. And then when I gave her a uniform she just looked into my eyes and knowing that moment I really knew that Nalu was going to work you know, either it didn’t matter what was going to happen after that, at least may be one little impact you know like it worked. She just looked into my eyes and then she closed her eyes and she just smelt it. She’s smelt the uniform and it was like the first new thing that she’d ever smelt. And then she just ran to the bathroom and put on her new uniform and then she walked out like the red dusty school playing and she looked like she she’s was just glowing. She was so happy because that uniform was so much more than just a piece of clothing for her. It was, it was the key to her freedom, you know. She could now stay in school instead of having to be at home. And who knows what would have happened…

FS: Actually what we found out on our last giving trip is she’s gone to college now. So that was like, oh! my god, like me and Dali that was one of the happiest moments that this first school uniform recipient that we’ve given if we didn’t give that school uniform she would now probably be pregnant like her other sisters. She’s now in college studying what she loves.

[00:13:28] CG: Those were Finn and Dali from Nalu. I love their enthusiasm, I love how children are taking the world in their hands and they’re not going to stop and wait until someone bigger and older and a system and a government is going to take change. They want to be empowered. They want to decide what they do taking action and actually involving children like mine into Nalu. Jeanetta also explains how making the uniforms gave work to the other people in their community.

[00:13:56] Jeanetta: We’ve been teaching women how to sew for almost 10 years even before we got here. And then women would come to me and say I want work. I want to earn money. I don’t care about the certificate, give me a job. I decided to see if I could figure out how to do a workshop. And we started with quilt making and over a weekend workshop we trained 18 women on how to make quilts. At the end of the workshop we hired eight of them and now we’re up to 35 and making the uniforms is going to take up three months of our work because last year with 775 uniforms.

[00:14:35] CG: So this is what I love about Nalu. The kids were supported by the parents to set up Nalu and then they created this model in which..

[00:14:43] EL: They work with Jeanetta’s trust who pays the women in the area to make the uniforms..

[00:14:50] CG: ..and then the uniforms goes to the kids.

[00:14:51] EL: I love it.

[00:14:52] CG: It’s great.

[00:14:53] EL: Dali & Finn’s father Vismai tells us more.

[00:14:55] Father:  I think it’s a really interesting one as a parent actually. Cause they started it when they were just 10 and 13. I mean it’s just growing quite organically actually that at a certain point, I mean we just had Nalu T-shirts & sweaters even blocking the doorways and there was so many products in the house and at a certain stage we were like, OK you know, business is actually working, we’re having an impact. But at the same time, they were still kids so how do you protect a child from the unnecessary things that a child doesn’t really need to know about a business. Like I didn’t want the children to know about cash flow when they were 10 and 13. I was just living these dream of selling T-shirts and giving school uniforms. So we just wanted to protect them from that. But what I really like sharing with them is the giving trips. As a family going into these poor communities in India and making an impact and letting the children find out from their own friends and seeing these children each year and going to different schools and exploring new places and keeping these, that’s it, poor village children in school.

[00:16:07] CG: As a mother, I can identify with Vismai’s desire to protect his own kids from the harsh realities of this world. But in reality, if you think about it, if you really mean that there is no one to protect you from those realities and there’s so many harsher realities in the world of Jeannetta’s she explained. So well, Priti is in College, her future is yet to be written.

[00:16:30] Jeanetta: These schools are so poor, just think of it, your teachers aren’t getting paid and these are tribal schools do not draw the best teachers and are so overworked they’ve got 60 kids to a class and so there’s no time for career counseling or exploring what might be possible after they finish the 10 standard or 12 standard. Why even take the exam? So in terms of a uniform, yes they got a uniform, yes they’re in school. They could show up at school. But why? Why go to school? And what possible opportunities are out there? Somebody needs to explain these things and inspire them to go forward. So Priti is not getting any of that. We have some girls who have graduated, got jobs as engineers. And one of my favorites, she graduated as an engineer got a job and now she just got married this year. And her face is on Facebook and she’s so happy and she’s a success story.

[00:17:31] EL: I have to say I love the story. It isn’t the super shiny story that I’d love to hear that Priti is doing amazingly well in college. She’s setting her sights really high. She’s challenging herself. But you know what we have to be super realistic. She’s not pregnant. She has not married. She’s in school, she’s got books, she’s got a toilet. And none of her other sisters ended up in college. She’s the only one who got this far.

[00:17:58] CG: And so when you’re supporting these small organizations, think of Priti. Those are the small steps that can make the big difference.

[00:18:04] EL: And when we come back we’re going to look at a school that goes the next step in guiding girls.

[00:18:12] Global GoalsCast has the most incredible network of partners that contribute with ideas, stories and evidence points to bring you the most relevant interesting and compelling Goals Cast content. Particular thanks to UNICEF today.

[00:18:26] EL: Welcome back. So now we’re going to share a story about the Ann Richards School in Austin, Texas. And one of its first students whose name is Dennis. So the school’s named after the female governor of Texas who set it up before she died. And it’s doing the things that Jeanetta wishes that she could be doing for the school girls in India. I actually met Ann Richards daughter, Ellen.

[00:18:46] CG: I remember when you mentioned. Yeah! She made a big impression.

[00:18:48] EL: I love her. And I met her in Austin this year during South by Southwest. And she told me what makes this school so special.

[00:18:57] Ellen: It has a STEAM focus: Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math, and we work with girls to get them through high school, prepare for college and then were now developing programming to get them through college. The school was created with the idea of giving opportunity to girls who show promise but lack opportunity. And so majority of the girls, they go to school come from economically disadvantaged families and would be considered at risk and the goal of the school is to give them a true opportunity to achieve academic success and to pursue their goals to go to college. We wrap around the whole girl and really look at not just their academics but what are their leadership opportunities and how do we build those? How are they taking care of themselves & what are they learning about their bodies and what they need to do to be successful and take care of themselves both physically and mentally? And then again the college bound programming. So, we look at a multitude of aspects of their lives and really want to put them on the path for success by giving them the strong academic foundation, the leadership skills, the Wellman’s understanding and then that opportunity to go to college.

There are so many amazing girls and it really is just something incredible to see a girl come in as a 6th grader, scared, not knowing what to expect, and then to want to across the state of graduation confident and ready to take on the world. That one girl I can think of who graduated last year came with such an incredible story. She had come to this country when she was about 2 from Mexico with her mother. Her father was in prison. There really wasn’t much of a future for her and she heard about the Ann Richards School when she was in elementary school and she just decided that that’s where she wanted to go. She knew this was the place for her to be and so she worked hard. And she got into the school and stood up in front of the crowd of folks at a gala fundraiser we had to tell her story and the success that she has had and now she’s graduated and in at an ivy league school. I would like to say that she’s rare in our group but she is not. Many of the girls come with very serious and tragic stories but find their place at Ann Richards, get the support that they need to excel & then are going on to do great things. And they’re really do not only change their own lives but they’re changing the lives of their community.

[00:21:25] CG: So more recently we caught up with one of the students from this school. Dennis Vera.

[00:21:31] Dennis: The one of the things that the Ann Richards School did really well is that they believed in you. And they taught me to not let my socioeconomic background define me. And I think that’s one of the things I’ll always get from the Ann Richards School as well as the fact that I need to believe in myself and my capabilities and they provided me with the environment to be able to test myself, to be able to know that I was capable of achieving more than what society considered standard for ‘oh this is someone who falls under this categories can achieve’. When our stepdad was in our lives, he had this very specific definition of what a role of a woman was and what a role of a man was and I think just realizing you know you don’t fit into that definition and you are capable of achieving more and you can get a higher education, what you will get a higher education you can go even further on from that. When you come in and you’re a Hispanic and you are first generation college student and you’re low income, you just don’t have that base to go off. Everything is new for you and all you need is to have that one teacher that believes in you and that doesn’t automatically limit you because of your English fluency or because you look a certain way.

High school has been a rough time for our family but specifically within my 11th grade year. But when I had to take on two jobs because my mom didn’t have electricity and I had to take on two jobs and  I had to get up early in the morning and go to McDonald’s to get my internet. I remember during my 11th grade year when we didn’t have electricity and Miss Goka our principal came in on Sunday because she heard about our situation because my sister and I we didn’t really like to tell people about what was going on but the teachers are amazing as always so like they told Miss Goka about our situation. And so what happened was that Miss Goka came in one Saturday morning and she picked us up from home. And she opened up the school so that we could have access to the Internet and to the laptops. I remember we walked in on that Sunday morning and Miss Goka took us in to her office and she told us girls I know y’all are going through a hard time but I just want y’all to know that I believe you will overcome this. Because you are all so strong and our school was really good about providing us with resources like our librarian gave me a small laptop to use so that I would be able to do my work outside of home.

You know just having that support specifically during those difficult times I think that’s what really resonated. I’m pretty sure if I wouldn’t have had the support of the school and I wouldn’t have had them believing in me that I wouldn’t have believed in myself. And I wouldn’t definitely question whether or not I would have decided to pursue a higher education.

[00:24:30] EL: So there is a school that gives you dreams, right. Principals taking you to school on the weekend & telling Dennis and her sister that they believe in her, librarians giving laptops, having Wi-Fi, having resources, inspirational teachers and a really focused goal on producing female leaders.

[00:24:47] CG: Dennis will be the first in her family to graduate from college. She is passionate about helping others like care and I am passionate about finding Hispanic leaders and potential Latina power like her.

[00:25:00] Dennis: Oh! I’m doing a lot of things. I’m coordinating a program called Corazon within a nonprofit known as Amigos as the Corazon Coordinator, I work with students 5th to 8th grade. We focus on two main goals. The first one is empowering Latino students through their culture and the second one is guiding them through the process of acquiring leadership skills that will help them in the future. But overall just providing this environment where students can believe in themselves and in their potential.

[00:25:42] EL: We’ve heard two inspiring stories but Claudia how does this represent where we are in reaching the goal of giving every child a primary and secondary education?

[00:25:50] CG: I think that one of the biggest issues for me when it comes to education are two-folded. The first one is that eve Christine Lagarde says that poverty is sexist, I think that education is sexist too. And I have a problem with equity equation because in that category you have the most marginalized, be the disabled, the girls, the ones that are in rural areas where you don’t reach. You know like you really need to be walking three days to get to school but at the same time girls are really exposed to not get an education because a mother and I’ve seen it everywhere that I travel around the world. I know that a mother that has a lot of children and children are in many instances for a family that is not educated, they are their security. So families have a lot of children in order to support them when they grow old and naturally they think that if there is any future, it should be for the boys and so they send the boys to the school and the girls to pick up the water and help them with the house..

[00:26:54] EL: ..and get up at 4:00 in the morning & do the laundry.

[00:26:55] CG: ..And also the risks that are attached –  discrimination and vulnerability and the world being making a lot of progress in that education – but not for all. I mean like there’s so much progress and we’re managing actually to get every time more people in school and people in school for longer. So not only for until they are six years old, weremanaging to increase the number of years in which children are getting into school. So that’s why stories like Nalu is fascinating because you prolong the story through little pieces like Nalu giving a uniform.

[00:27:28] EL: Yeah! And every single year that you keep that girl in schools another year that she doesn’t have a baby, she doesn’t get married. Her body hasn’t been subjected to something that she’s not ready for and the chances she gets a little more education, and she gets a little bit more perception of the world and maybe she goes to do something else. What I was so struck by that Ann Richards School is that they teach the whole girl. So they’re really concerned about how she deals with her body, how she learns to speak, focusing on mathematics, on science and also thinking about your community, thinking about where you came from and also thinking about giving back, so if you’ve gained something from this education then what are you going to do to give back to the people that you came from?

[00:28:09] CG: We probably should compete for our 2018 podcast just to have a lens on girls. Overall what we’re doing because we know that you know like whatever happens when you invest in girls you’re going to see the returns in so many other areas so we’re openly accepting our bias towards looking at life through a lens of girls.

[00:28:28] EL: Yeah! And maybe someday Priti and Dennis will take over this podcast.

[00:28:33] CG: or join us at least.

[00:28:34] EL: Yeah! Let’s get them in.

[00:28:36] CG: There are three things that I think that can capture the three smart pieces of data that we want to talk about that capture how far we have to go.

[00:28:47] EL: So there’s 250 million children who can’t read, write or even do basic math. There’s 121 million children between 6 and 15 who aren’t in school at all and children themselves actually care a lot about this. There’s a UNICEF survey of 14 countries where children identified education, terrorism and poverty as the issues they wanted world leaders to tackle.

So we always want to leave you with actions you can take to be part of changing the world. So, if you’re interested in education and you want to do more. Go to our website, GlobalGoalsCast.org where our partners from Action Button will help you do that.

[00:29:29] CG: We want to end this episode of The Global GoalsCast with a word inspiration from rapper and entrepreneur and my friend Will.i.am who has been campaigning for the importance of learning particularly science, math and art. And here we got together at the GoalsKeeper Summit in September hosted by Bill and Melinda Gates.

[00:29:48] William:  Young people, don’t just compete over here. You can compete over there. And whoever told you couldn’t and are afraid that you will. So, compete. Someone told me that the world is based on greed and fear. Those greedy people are fearful that you’re going to compete with them and you have the ability to speak. There’s more people like you than there are like them. So compete. Talk directly to the people that are like you. That’s the simple message. If you’re in freaking, some Pueblo in Mexico if you’re in the ghetto in East L.A. or the Bronx or if you’re in a fifth world Mississippi think about how you’re going to contribute to the world of science, technology, engineering and mathematics. It’s not impossible.

[00:30:29] CG: Thank you for listening. Our next episode looks at migration.

[00:30:35] EL: And if you want to make sure you never miss a show, subscribe to us at our Web site – GlobalGoalsCast.org, iTunes or wherever you get your podcasts and please follow us on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook @GlobalGoalsCast. We’ll give you the latest news and developments.

[00:30:50] CG: And that was Edie Loosh and I am Claudia Romo Edelman.

[00:30:53] EL: Edie Loosh?? I’m Edie Lush.

Thanks to all our U.N. and NGO partners. We are also grateful for the support of Hub Culture, Freud’s Communication, SAS, Saatchi & Saatchi and CBS News Digital.

Special thanks to Peter Gabriel for our amazing music during this episode.

Episode Zero: What are the SDGs?


Can we eliminate extreme poverty while curbing climate change? Can we have more equity and more economic growth? Put simply, can we make the world a better place for all?

This isn’t just some daydream you’ve probably had. It is the direct commitment made by 193 nations when they agreed to 17 Global Goals for the year 2030, 12 years from now. 

The Global Goals are ambitious, inspiring and daunting. They will require a level of cooperation and coordinated action unmatched in history—among governments, between government and the private sector and by millions of individuals holding leaders to account and pitching in themselves. Reaching the Global Goals will require major progress on everything from migration to education.

This brief episode introduces you to the goals and to your co-hosts, Claudia Romo Edelman, Special Advisor for UNICEF and expert on Marketing for social causes , and Edie Lush, journalist and communication coach.

“We are the first generation that can end extreme poverty,” Romo Edelman explains “and the last generation that can curb climate change.” Learn about this master plan for the planet’s future. “There is no plan B,” Romo Edelman reports. 

“Because,” Edie Lush adds, “there is no planet B.” If you want to be a part of changing the world you can start by listening to Global GoalsCast.

Featured guests

Caleb Tiller

Caleb Tiller is the United Nations Foundation’s Executive Director of Communications & Public Affairs, and brings over a decade of experience in communications, marketing and public relations to the position. He helps manage an award-winning team of more than 30 communicators, shaping the conversation about the Foundation’s work to connect people, ideas and resources to help the UN take on the world’s most pressing challenges.

Previous positions include tenures in the travel industry, the non-profit sector, and membership associations. Just prior to the UN Foundation, Caleb worked as Sr. Director, Marketing and Communications, for the Global Business Travel Association, an organization where he served for over six years. In his last position at GBTA, Caleb oversaw all of the organization’s event marketing, media relations, social media, and membership communications, for operations in North America, South America, and Europe. Caleb started his career as an educator, working for four years as a high school English teacher and college-level tutor.

Caleb lives in Washington, DC, with his wife, two children, and dog. He has been known to call himself music head, and has admitted on occasion that he is a terrible Twitter user.


00:00:00] P1: She could not understand what that even means. What does it mean to have a dream. One lady is literally says no one’s ever asked me what my dream was.

[00:00:13] P2: Last year we recorded the hottest day measured by NASA in the history of the Antarctic.

[00:00:15] P3: I could really see myself in these kids and I couldn’t imagine these kids not being in school, and being in a dangerous situation. We were gonna change this.

[00:00:24] P4: I just couldn’t believe that some thing so simple & so ordinary like a uniform had such a huge measurable effect and an impact.

[00:00:33] P5: We can make some differences. We need to make those differences.

[00:00:37] P6: And will mean, some girl, somewhere getting an education that otherwise she wouldn’t have been…

[00:00:40] P7: The list of 17 very ambitious goals. Let’s eliminate poverty, let’s eradicate hunger, let’s educate everybody, let’s ensure that everyone has access to good health, lets protect the environment…

[00:00:52] P8: Our individual progress and our collective progress, depends on our willingness to roll up our sleeves and work.

[00:01:09] EL: This is the Global GoalsCast.

[00:01:10] CG: The podcast that asks: ‘Can we change the world?’

[00:01:14] EL: Welcome. I’m Edie Lush.

[00:01:16] CG: And I am Claudia Romo Edelman.

[00:01:17] EL: And this episode we’re going to introduce you to what the Sustainable Development Goals are and who we are…

[00:01:23] CG: And this is actually our Episode 0 which is quite amazing because we want to tell you what are the Sustainable Development Goals or global goals and why should you care.

[00:01:32] EL: They are a plan. They are the world’s to-do list.

[00:01:36] CG: And the master plan for the future of the planet and its people and the reason why this is so historic, it is because you took actually 193 countries to agree on what are the real steps that we need to do and change so that we can provide everyone with what they have the right to have which is education, health, a future in which people can smile and see a river…

[00:02:00] EL: With clean air, clean water.

[00:02:03] CG: The promises Edie of the Sustainable Development Goals and we are going to call them the Global Goals in this program are three basic fundamental issues that are behind those 17 goals which are, first of all this is the first ever generation that can eradicate extreme poverty for the world. The second one is that this is the last generation that can stop and mitigate the impact of climate change. And lastly but really importantly that we can elevate the playing field of the world for all not only for the few and that’s the promise of the Global Goals and that’s why we’re so excited about this plan. And by the way Edie, this is the only plan that we have, we have no plan B..

[00:02:48] EL: Because there is no planet B

[00:02:50] CG: There’s no planet B either. So what we’re going to be having here is talking about the people that are making the progress that were advancing these Sustainable Development Goals started in 2015 and they’re going for 15 years. So are we going to be telling you the stories of those companies, individuals and corporations that are making progress there are, you know like, working day and night to make sure that we have a better gender policy on everything and the rights for everyone. And some people, as you mentioned, have done these things but never knew that they belong to something called the SDGs].

[00:03:23] EL: And that’s what I think is amazing and as we’ve been preparing these first couple episodes, I’ve gotten to interview the people who are out there working in the field, they’re working in the places where there is the most extreme poverty in the world. People like Jeanetta originally from Oregon who now lives in India and she’s the co-founder of the Shree Nityanada Education Trust which works with rural people on getting clean water, on educating girls and boys and keeping them in school. So when I spoke to her she hadn’t actually heard about the Sustainable Development Goals.

[00:03:57] CG: And it’s great to know if we are able to connect through this podcast the people that are doing their work, the organizations that are doing the efforts and actually put them together and understand that this is part of a global master plan, there is going to be a more like yeah we belong to a movement of changing the world and making it better because it’s possible. So why are we doing this podcast and what is it that we want to achieve?

[00:04:20] EL: Yeah! This is what we’re not. We’re not super boring in fact we are not boring at all.

[00:04:25] CG: Not at all.

[00:04:26] EL: We’re super interesting and fun and we’re going to tell you three things that you really need to know about each one of our topics so when we get to migration we’re going to tell you the three most interesting things that you need to remember about migration, something you’d want to go to a dinner party or tell your grandmother or your best friend about.

[00:04:41] CG: We are not a propaganda too of the United Nations or any country either. We are not NGOish, boring, sleeping pill but we are fun, music, entertainment and rigor applied to making sure that people understand why these issues are so important. So why did we start doing this podcast?

[00:05:00] EL: So I met you in fact at the World Economic Forum in Davos last January and I interviewed you and it was one of the greatest experiences I have had because I actually had never heard about the Sustainable Development Goals until I had interviewed you. And after that Stan Stalnaker, who is the founder of Hub Culture, said ‘you guys should do a podcast’ and that’s where this started.

[00:05:23] CG: And it triggered me because there is a great deal of progress in the world and there is a great deal of people that voices need to be heard but there was no platform and I think that everyone in the world is sick of hearing bad news and actually getting all dark and everything that we’re not doing right. But guess what? There is a great deal of beauty and there’s a great deal of hope that is out there and there are a great deal of people that are trying every time hard. And what we’re going to be doing is providing that platform, telling that story, telling those stories and allow people to listen from each other because it is so important to feel that what you’re doing, you’re not doing alone and that little flame in your heart that says like ‘I want to do more, I want to get engaged myself but am only one individual, how do I do it?’ Well guess what? There’s a thousand people like you that just need to know what are the things that you can be doing today? And also as governments are trying to implement these humongous challenges they need public support to commit to action because this world will not change if we don’t commit to action so that’s actually the promise of this podcast.

[00:06:32]EL: We’re going to tell you important things you need to know and we’re also going to tell you exactly what you can do about it. So we’re going to give you actions that you can go out and implement for each one of our episodes, for each one of our topics whether it’s migration, education, climate change.

[00:06:49] CG: Those are the Global Goals, this is the podcast. Who are we? I’m going to introduce Edie Lush, my co-host. Edie Lush is a journalist from America that lives in London so it makes it fun to actually have to find the time in which we can record together. She is a coach and a trainer and I love that aspect of Edie. That’s one of the things that started making me fall in love with her. It’s so interesting to see how many people have you changed their life through your coaching and your training by telling them how to tell stories, what to be a storyteller so Edie is a business journalist & entrepreneur herself that specializes in entrepreneurship and tech and we together have to create that website called WheresEdie.com because I never can find her.

[00:07:31] EL: And also I will mention that quite often you call me from some very interesting and fun places, when I’m at home in the rain in London. So just so that I can introduce Claudia as well. She started off as a journalist and she’s also been a diplomat and she also has worked for the World Economic Forum for the United Nations and her specialties have been children refugees and public health. I think it’s also worth pointing out that we are both migrants, we’re both mothers, we spend a lot of time with our families as well as out there working.

[00:08:02] CG: So, mother, migrant, entrepreneur and we met in the activism world to make sure that we created a female-led podcast called the Global GoalsCast that will have 24 episodes, twice a month launching in January. Thank you for listening.

[00:08:17] EL: And if you want to make sure you never miss a show subscribe to us at our website GlobalGoalsCast.org, iTunes or where ever you get your podcasts. And please follow us on Twitter Instagram and Facebook @GlobalGoalscast. We’ll give you the latest news and developments.

[00:08:34] CG: I am Claudia Romo Edelman.

[00:08:36] EL: And I’m Edie Lush, the Global GoalsCast.

[00:08:47] Thanks to all our U.N. and NGO partners. We are also grateful for the support of Hub Culture Freuds Communication, SAS, Saatchi & Saatchi and CBS New Digital.