Stories: Social Issues

  • The struggle of women amid civil war, droughts and floods in Mozambique

    ESPUNGABERA, Mozambique - Samere Mashava could not hide his anger and frustration as he narrates how his wife fled from their village in Mozambique’s Espungabera area near the border with Zimbabwe. Mashava’s wife is one of the many women in this part of Mozambique who were forced to flee their homes as a result of the...

  • The Steady Beat of Wars and Heavy Rains

    With just a thin dark grey shawl thrown over her shoulders, Leocadio Simango, was soaked and shivering as she trudged through the streets of Chimoio, the fifth-largest city in Mozambique, on a rainy morning. Leocadio was selling an assortment of small wares- biscuits, sweets, canned drinks and some potato crispy. She carried these items in a dish covered by a...

  • Facing Sri Lanka’s Ghosts

    VAVUNIYA, Sri Lanka — At some point during its brutal 26 years, the Sri Lankan civil war brought terror or loss to virtually everyone in the country. For Kasipillai Jeyavanitha, a mother of four, the defining moment of the conflict came in March 2009, just two months before the war ended eight years ago today. She and her family were among thousands...

  • The Women Left Behind

    VAVUNIYA, Sri Lanka — It was midnight in 2008 when several members of Sri Lanka's security forces barged into Rajendran Geetha's house and took her husband, Sekar, from bed. "We only need him for a brief inquiry," she recalls them saying as they blindfolded him and tied his hands with a black rope. In front of his wife, two...

  • With Senegal’s Fishermen

    When a fisherman prays at sea, he performs his ablutions with salt water and turns the boat in the direction of Mecca. But on the tenth day of his journey to the Canary Islands, Djiby Diop told me, everyone’s prayers mingled together, voices rising jagged and hoarse, calling on the Great, the Merciful, to save them. Water poured...

  • How teen moms in Nigeria could wind up hurt by Trump’s U.N. cuts

    LAGOS, Nigeria — Supo Nofisat didn’t mean to get pregnant. As a single, unemployed 18-year-old living in Nigeria, she knew that having a child could mean an even harder life. So when her pregnancy test came back positive in January and a traditional midwife told her she was already three months along, the aspiring hairdresser thought she had...

  • Pakistan’s first trans model: ‘People think we’re sex workers but we can be doctor

    "Sex,” Kami Sid declares, “is between your legs. Gender is in your head.” Sid wants to get this into everyone’s head in Pakistan. A 26-year-old transgender activist, she is currently enjoying a breakthrough turn as a model who can carry off a sari while calling out Pakistanis for transphobia. Pakistan may seem like an...

  • Preying on disaster: How human trafficking has spiked in quake-shattered Nepal

    The year following two earthquakes that devastated Nepal saw a spike in desperate people falling into the clutches of human traffickers. Two years later, with the country’s infrastructure and economy still in ruins, NGOs say human trafficking is still on the rise. Nepal has long been a source of economic migrants, and the money they’ve sent...

  • South Africa Sets Up Program to Break the Link between HIV/AIDS and Violence

    Miranda was four months pregnant and extremely anxious when she got her first HIV test. She had long been afraid of a positive diagnosis, and shortly after stepping into a tent offering free HIV tests at a taxi stand in central Johannesburg, her fear was confirmed. Miranda—who asked to use a pseudonym to protect her safety and privacy...

  • Apply Today to Report on Global Religion Issues

    About This Fellowship The International Reporting Project is accepting applications from professional journalists to report on global religion issues. Applications will be reviewed in cycles on a rolling basis. For proposals requiring travel by August 2017, the deadline is Friday, April 28, 2017 at 11:59pm EST. The next round, for projects requiring fall travel, will be announced shortly. Some of the...