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Angelina Jolie Visits Afghan Refugees

"United Nations Goodwill Ambassador Angelina Jolie today saw off a convoy of trucks carrying Afghans home from Pakistan, pushing the total number of those repatriating with help from the UN refugee agency past the 50,000 mark for the year. The Academy Award-wining actress arrived yesterday in Pakistan for a four-day visit to focus world attention on the plight of Afghan refugees. The 500 refugees who left Attock in the 35-vehicle convoy were all skilled carpet weavers carrying their talents back to their original homes in the northern Afghan provinces of Balkh and Jozan." Read more...
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Jackie Chan Fights AIDS for UN

UN News Service: "Taking time off from battling fictitious villains, action film superstar and United Nations ambassador Jackie Chan wrapped up a visit today to Viet Nam, joining in the real-life fight against AIDS and sending a powerful message that more must be done both for prevention and advocacy. "I may be a movie hero, but the real heroes are the people I've met in Viet Nam, among them grandparents, mothers and wives, and many young people and children, who are showing real courage in dealing with living with HIV/AIDS and who just be supported much more," said the star of such films as Rush Hour and Rumble in the Bronx. During his three-day visit, Mr. Chan, a Goodwill Ambassador for the UN Children's Fund (UNICEF) and the Joint UN Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS), travelled to Quang Ninh province, north-east of Hanoi, which has the highest HIV prevalence in the country. There he heard how stigma and discrimination continue to inflict pain and alienation and also hamper efforts to stop the spread of the disease."
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Pavarotti Carries UN Message on Farewell Tour

"Luciano Pavarotti, one of the most celebrated opera singers, will promote United Nations causes during his Worldwide Farewell Tour of more than 40 concerts this year and next, taking the world body's humanitarian message to the four corners of the earth. Since his appointment as a UN Messenger of Peace in 1998, Mr. Pavarotti has used his fame to raise funds for UN projects. His latest campaign will contribute greatly to raising awareness of UN issues such the Millennium Development Goals, which seek to curb a host of social and economic ills by 2015, HIV/AIDS, child rights, urban slums and poverty. "I am very proud both to be associated with the United Nations and to have been appointed a Messenger of Peace for this valuable and vital organization and will do whatever I can to help its work," he commented during his visit to Johannesburg for his farewell concert to South Africa earlier this week." More...
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On the Road: Blogging the Women & AIDS Tour – Part 2

Empower Women, Save Lives: Women & AIDS U.S. Tour March 5, 2005 GUEST BLOGGERS Laura Rogers: Director of Advocacy & Communications/Global Health, UNF Jessica Bernstein: Communications Associate, UNF "No one is a random person in the fight against AIDS," Michaelle Soliman told the junior and senior classes of Stratford High School in Nashville, Tenn. yesterday. "Everyone matters and everyone has power." Michaelle confided to the sometimes rowdy 160 high schoolers that she had lost both of her parents to AIDS when she was a child in Haiti. That's why at age 24 she works in the capitol of Haiti to educate young people about the disease and to try to keep them HIV negative. She is one of the four amazing women participating in the seven-day, five city public education tour sponsored by the Global Coalition on Women and AIDS. We stood off to the side, truly impressed that for the 20 minutes these young women were ready to share, every young person in the audience was ready to listen. Their stories made it clear that AIDS is not only an issue in Indonesia and Haiti, but also at Stratford High School in Nashville, TN. Kids asked questions about how to keep themselves safe, how it feels to live with a killer disease, and how AIDS changes lives.
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On the Road: Blogging the Women & AIDS Tour – Part 1

Empower Women, Save Lives: Women & AIDS U.S. Tour March 3, 2005 GUEST BLOGGERS Laura Rogers: Director of Advocacy & Communications/Global Health, UNF Jessica Bernstein: Communications Associate, UNF We're mid-air on our way to Nashville, Tenn., on the second day of the women & AIDS Tour after a grand kick-off in NYC. We had been looking forward to meeting the women on the tour for months and they are every bit as inspiring, intelligent and compelling as we thought they would be. Princess, Michaelle, Violeta, and Frika are so full of life. It's amazing to see them connecting with and educating Americans. As they share their powerful stories, we know that they are each unique, and yet share many similar ties to those of millions of women throughout the world. From Zambia to Nashville, from Haiti to Washington, DC the message is the same: the face of AIDS is increasingly young and female. There is so much that you can do to become a part of this effort. Start by signing the Global Call-to-Action and then make a contribution. Show that girls count by standing up and being counted. As soon as we land, we're off to another VIP reception. More news tomorrow. Laura & Jessica For more information, visit the Global Coalition on Women and AIDS website.
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UN Working to Boost Iraq’s Agriculture

From UN News Center: "United Nations bodies have begun a series of projects to improve agricultural production in Iraq, including irrigation, fertilizers and the building of skills, the world organization's mission in the country announced today. The UN Development Group Trust Fund (UNDG TF) is carrying out a $35 million program to strengthen basic irrigation and drainage engineering as well as farming skills in Iraq. The program also seeks to encourage professionals and technicians from different disciplines to work together to benefit farmers."
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Five-City Women and AIDS U.S. Tour

The Global Coalition on Women and AIDS is launching a five-city "Women and AIDS U.S. Tour: Empower Women, Save Lives." The Tour will emphasize that local and global communities must join forces to deliver prevention, care and treatment services that meet the needs of women and girls, while engaging men and boys as positive agents of change. More...
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Student Spearheads ‘Measles Initiative’ Fund-Raiser

Great story posted on the UN Foundation website: "When McKinley Middle School sixth-grader Craig Smith learned that one African child dies each minute from measles, he decided to take action. He urged his classmates to raise money for the American Red Cross Measles Initiative, a long-term project that aims to inoculate 200 million children in up to 36 sub-Saharan African countries." Read the rest...