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Promoting Health and Peace in Africa

January 23, 2012
Caroline Hope Griffith
Caroline Hope Griffith

A Blog by Caroline Hope Griffith, DGHI Associate in Research

By integrating leadership, health and faith, African community members are serving their communities as leaders and calling for change. In communities torn apart by violence, war and growing health disparities, the challenges are vast but a conference held in Uganda last week reminds us that progress is possible.

The Duke Divinity School and its partners in East Africa organized the annual Great Lakes Initiative (GLI) Institute in Uganda last week.  The five-day conference, of which DGHI Associate in Research Caroline Hope Griffith attended, brings together Christian leaders from the African Great Lakes region working to promote peace and reconciliation in their communities.

Hope Griffith works with DGHI, the Divinity School and Fuqua School of Business on projects that integrate health, business and faith to address health challenges in Africa. In her blog, Hope Griffith chronicles the inspirational event and shares some of the collaborative work under way at Duke which aims to promote peace and health in Africa.

Blog 1.1: Promoting Peace & Health in East Africa: An Introduction
Three nights ago, I was asked by a fellow traveler on my KLM flight from Detroit to Amsterdam where I was going and why. It was difficult to provide a coherent response at 2 am high above the Atlantic Ocean, but I managed to tell him that I was traveling to Uganda for seven days to participate in the Great Lakes Initiative (GLI) Institute…

Blog 1.2: African Women Defining What it Means to Lead
“I am woman, hear me roar.” Over the past two days, a running theme through the plenary sessions and workshops at the GLI Institute has been the role and challenges of women in African society. In our discussions and conversations, women have been praised as persevering, nurturing, daring, and visionary…

Blog 1.3: A Powerful Tool to Improve Ugandan Health Care
What are the most important attributes of a leader in the African Great Lakes region? One quality stands out above the rest: the ability to lead by serving, instead of leading by being served, a concept known as “servant leadership.” Many leaders (all over the world) see their position as a privileged one, and expect to be served…

Blog 1.4: Improving Health Care in the Faith Community
How can spiritual leaders and faith-based institutions use reconciliation to help health care providers work together, improve quality and accessibility of care, and improve the well-being of individuals, families, and communities? On Friday, we asked seven health professionals from Uganda, Tanzania, Kenya, and the U.S. who gathered this year at the GLI Institute to share examples of the ways in which the faith community could use reconciliation to improve health care in this region…

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