This weblog features the Global Integration Updates from Member Care Associates. The Updates provide materials to support colleagues in different sectors as they connect and contribute on behalf of the major issues in our world. Feel free to add comments and resources in the "Comments" section located at the end of each of the Updates.
"What do you call a person who runs towards danger to save others? Who is undaunted by disease, famine, drought, floods, earthquakes, tsunamis, locusts, conflict zones—and now the COVID-19 pandemic?" World Humanitarian Day 2020: Real-Life Heroes ------------
In this Update we continue to share a variety of resources to encourage us all in our lives and work during the COVID-19 pandemic. We emphasize the united efforts for covid-care via real-life heroes—ordinary people all around the world who are helping others. Corona fears and fatigue are very real. Keep persevering with courage.
We join together in solidarity with the world community's efforts, locally through globally, on behalf of covid-care and in hopes to stir up the heroic in all of us. We also note that the many overlapping problems in our world continue unabated--shadow pandemics--even as this covid pandemic dominates the center stage globally: multi-dimensional poverty, protracted violence, human rights violations, gross inequalities, racism, mental ill health, environmental degradation, etc. This is the ongoing, cascading context which challenges us daily as we seek to practically support the wellbeing of all persons/peoples and the planet.
See also our recent Updates below for helping ourselves and others with covid-care. Examples of issues/resources: anxiety, trauma, depression, confinement, loneliness, loss, grief, relationship strains, coping for children, work insecurities, spiritual struggles, uncertainty/concerns about what is going on, etc.
"Courage is the most important of all the virtues because without courage, you can't practice any other virtue consistently.” Maya Angelou ---------
International Humanitarian Day (19 August 2020). Real Life Heroes. “On World Humanitarian Day (WHD) August 19, the world commemorates humanitarian workers killed and injured in the course of their work, and we honour all aid and health workers who continue, despite the odds, to provide life-saving support and protection to people most in need. This year World Humanitarian Day comes as the world continues to fight the COVID-19 pandemic over recent months. Aid workers are overcoming unprecedented access hurdles to assist people in humanitarian crises in 54 countries, as well as in a further nine countries which have been catapulted into humanitarian need by the COVID-19 pandemic….we are paying special tribute to the real-life heroes who have committed their lives to helping others in the most extreme circumstances throughout the world. The campaign focuses on what drives humanitarians to continue to save and protect lives despite conflict, insecurity, lack of access and risks linked to COVID-19.” (quote from website)
--Watch the one minute video overview for this year’s World Humanitarian Day. --Read the stories of real life heroes on the website. --Watch the commemoration held at the United Nations Geneva, archived on UN WebTV. Coronavirus Stories: Not just a health pandemic, but a multi-sectorial crisis requiring Africa specific solutions. Alexandra De Sousa, Global Geneva (25 August 2020).” As the coronavirus worsens across the world, concerned local and international humanitarian workers in Africa are worrying about the additional pandemics it is unleashing. Alexandra de Sousa, a medical doctor and anthropologist working in Ethiopia, highlights the urgent need for a regional approach. No one way fits all, and for a large part the strategies successfully deployed in the West cannot simply be copy pasted for the continent. Local contexts need to be taken into account. She further warns about the risks of undoing all the economic and social progress that has been made achieved in recent years coupled with the high risk of the virus being harboured in Africa’s slums, ultimately rebounding across the globe.” The Psychology Behind Unethical Behaviorby Merete Wedell-Wedellsborg, Harvard Business Review(12 April 2019). Introductory comments to the article by Kelly O’Donnell, posted on the Faith and Public Integrity website (20 August 2020). “Wondering what makes us “tick” when it comes to making unethical decisions? This article can help. It offers a quick, readable explanation of three core psychological dynamics that can undermine our positive ethical values in business and frankly in almost any setting. And these dynamics can certainly intensify when stress and anxiety levels are high such as during the current pandemic.” (opening comment about the article). Counseling Insider (13 August 2020). American Counseling Association (ACA). Weekly resources related to counseling with several focusing on issues in the covid pandemic. A recent example from the ACA’s Counseling Today online magazine, “The Revised Meaning of Self-Care in the Wake of COVID-19. “Practicing proper self-care is often the prescription that professional counselors will share with their clients to help manage life stressors and mental health symptoms during their day-to-day lives. That emphasis has taken on new meaning over the past several months as self-care routines have been offset by quarantining measures from the COVID-19 pandemic. Suddenly, sleeping patterns were thrown off by newfound anxiety. Routine pleasures such as listening to a podcast or playlist during the morning and evening commute disappeared as working from home became the new norm. With gyms closed, people were forced to adjust their exercise routines and workout habits. Typical avenues of social escape — restaurants, movie theaters, salons — were also closed. Even parks and hikes were off-limits in some states for a time.” (opening two paragraphs from the article)
World Health Organization: COVID-19 Vaccine Global Access Facility. “172 economies are now engaged in discussions to potentially participate in COVAX, a global initiative aimed at working with vaccine manufacturers to provide countries worldwide equitable access to safe and effective vaccines, once they are licensed and approved. COVAX currently has the world’s largest and most diverse COVID-19 vaccine portfolio - including nine candidate vaccines, with a further nine under evaluation and conversations underway with other.” Read more...
Webinar Series: Mental Health and COVID-19.United for Global Mental Health, The Lancet Psychiatry, Mental Health Innovation Network, and MHPSS Network. “[These weekly webinars] are designed to provide policy makers and the wider health community with the latest evidence on the impact of COVID-19 on mental health, and practical solutions to the challenging issues we are all grappling with. Participants are encouraged to join from around the world, including those with lived experience of mental health and of COVID-19. The format is short remarks by up to four panelists followed by a Q&A…You can see notes and recordings from previous webinars here: www.unitedgmh.org/news” Upcoming topics: Workplace mental health (25 August; Substance use and mental health during the COVID-19 outbreak (1 September); Mental health stigma and discrimination 15 September) .
Member Care Associates Inc. (MCA) is a non-profit, Christian organization working internationally from Geneva and the USA. MCA's involvement in Global Integration focuses on the wellbeing and effectiveness of personnel and their organizations in the mission, humanitarian, and development sectors as well as global mental health, all with a view towards supporting sustainable development for all people and the planet. Our services include consultation, training, research, developing resources, and publications.
Global Integration(GI) is a framework for actively and responsibly engaging in our world--locally to globally. It emphasizes connecting relationally and contributing relevantly on behalf of human wellbeing and the issues facing humanity, in light of our integrity, commitments, and core values (e.g., ethical, humanitarian, human rights, faith-based). GI encourages a variety of people to be at the “global tables” and in the "global trenches"--and everything in-between--in order to help research, shape, and monitor agendas, policies, and action for all people and the planet. It intentionally links building the world we need with being the people we need.
Human progress never rolls in on wheels of inevitability; it comes through the tireless efforts of men willing to be coworkers with God, and without this hard work, time itself becomes an ally of the forces of social stagnation. Martin Luther King, Jr., Letter from a Birmingham Jail (April 1963)
Disclaimer: The inclusion of the materials in the GI Updates as well as the recommendations and opinions expressed in these materials do not necessarily reflect their endorsement. The responsibility for the interpretation and use of the materials lies with the reader.