Sunita Danuwar, 2018 Trafficking in Persons (TIP) Report Hero, was honored this week as one of Fortune Magazine’s World’s 50 Greatest Leaders. Sunita is the Executive Director of Shakti Samuha, an organization that provides shelter and support to victims of trafficking in persons in Nepal. A trafficking survivor herself, Sunita now serves as an advocate for other victims. She has played a key role in expanding her organization’s victim-support services to include education and skills training, repatriation services, and legal assistance to survivors and girls at risk of trafficking. In 2018, the US Department of State recognized Sunita and...Continue
Transparency and accountability, whether in government, business, or other spheres of public life, ensures public trust in the integrity and fairness of leaders, elected officials and public servants. International exchange programs on transparency and accountability typically highlight the roles of civil society and the media as watchdogs and catalysts for the creation and maintenance of transparent and accountable government and organizations. The importance of protecting these two concepts is recognized by civil societies and such protective efforts form the bases of numerous international exchange programs. Transparency and accountability can both be applied to a broad range of concerns in...Continue
In the fall of 2018, Mr. Manuel Comeron, an alumnus of the 2017 Meridian International Visitors Leadership Program (IVLP) entitled “Strong Cities: Building Community Resilience to Radicalization and Violent Extremism,” was a programming partner for the Community Connections program. This iteration of Community Connections is a two-part international exchange program between Nashville and Chattanooga, Tennessee and Liège and Verviers, Belgium during which rising American and Belgian leaders in violence prevention exchange best practices in countering violent extremism. In the first part of the program, Mr. Comeron organized a one-week program in Liège for 8 American NGO leaders, government officials,...Continue
Women’s empowerment has long been recognized as a pillar of successful economic, social and community development. Since the 1946 U.N. Commission on the Status of Women, the international development community has focused research and attention on women’s rights in political, economic, social and educational fields, and one of the U.N.’s Sustainable Development Goals focuses on Gender equality and women’s empowerment.
IVLP Alumni Spotlight features U.S. Department of State International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP) alumni as they reflecton the impact of the program and how it has affected their work and lives. Here we spotlight, Ms. Antoinette Botti from Cote d’Ivoire, whose work focuses specifically on empowering women in rural environments. Ms. Botti participated in a large group project on volunteerism, and she recounts below the impact that this program had on her, both personally and professionally.