Global Health Event Series Focuses on Campus
Issue   |   Wed, 12/09/2015 - 02:44

This year’s 10 Days of Global Health, an annual series of events focusing on public health issues around the world, is adding elements that deal with campus issues in the wake of the Amherst Uprising movement. The events run from Tuesday, Dec. 1 through Friday, Dec. 11.

The series is primarily led by GlobeMed and also run by Amnesty International, Humans of Amherst, the Pride Alliance, the Student Health Educators and the Public Health Collaborative.

The purpose of 10 Days of Global Health is to engage and educate the campus on issues of global health through a variety of events, according to Emily Fitts ’16, one of the event organizers in GlobeMed.

The first event was a dinner for World Aids Day, held primarily by the Queer Resource Center, Pride Alliance and the Sexual Health Educators. Event organizers tabled in Keefe Campus Center with information about AIDS.

“From being at the table for two hours on the two days, I really thought it was a good effort because there were many things that people did not know,” Victoria Zhang ’18, a representative of the SHEs at the dinner, said. “Through this effort, we reached two hundred people.”

An event called “This I Believe,” primarily hosted by GlobeMed, will be held on Wednesday, Dec. 9. Participants can make crafts about statements of their personal beliefs. The event will be co-hosted by Humans of Amherst, a Facebook photography page that posts interviews and photos of Amherst College community members.

“This event was originally inspired by and modeled after the NPR series that recruited people to read belief statements they had written about an issue they felt strongly about,” Fitts said. She said the organizers hope to integrate this year’s events into the discussions kicked off by the student sit-in on Nov. 12.

On Thursday, Dec. 10, Amnesty International will host a letter-writing event at 8 p.m. in the ballroom of Morris Pratt dormitory. This event, called “Write for Rights,” is part of an annual Amnesty International campaign to draw attention to human rights abuses.

“Amnesty typically chooses 12 cases of human rights abuses that are especially relevant and time-sensitive,” said Flavia Martinez ’18, co-leader of the group. “At the event, people get together to write letters on behalf of these twelve people to foreign officials in their respective countries.”

The final event will be a dinner in the Friedmann Room on Friday, Dec. 11, in honor of Human Rights Day. Amherst professors will give talks on health and human rights, and the organizers plan to hold discussions about human rights in a campus and global context.

“Within our club meetings, we have attempted to tackle these issues from a global health perspective, discussing what it means to be a part of such a diverse world and campus community as students invested in global health worldwide,” Fitts said. “While last year, this event was focused mainly on people’s beliefs surrounding global health, we want to encourage people to expand their belief statements to virtually any issue that they feel passionately about.”