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Carter Center News: Winter 2010

From the President and CEO

It’s the Battles that Win the War 

In 1986, when The Carter Center decided to take on the challenge of eradicating Guinea worm disease, outside observers probably believed success to be impossible. There were 3.5 million cases of the disease spread across 20 countries in impoverished areas and no vaccine or medicine to stop the scourge. But threat of failure has never been a deterrent to us, and 25 years later, there are only a few thousand remaining cases of Guinea worm disease in just four countries.

Along the way, it’s been the small victories and your support that have propelled the Center forward.  Little by little, country by country, intense efforts in small villages have made a global impact.  During this holiday season, we are thankful as we reflect on just a few of this year’s accomplishments.

Please remember that making a donation to the Carter Center today is one of the most meaningful things you can do.

2010 Health Highlights:

•    Nigeria and Niger are Guinea Worm Free! – More than 6,100 loyal supporters have sent messages of congratulations to the people of Nigeria and Niger for their work in eradicating Guinea worm. Send your own message here.

•    Long-Term Commitment to Eliminate River Blindness Brightens Future for Latin America - One-third of people living in onchocerciasis-endemic communities in Latin America are no longer at risk for the debilitating disease.

•    Mental Health - Following more than a decade of civil conflict, The Carter Center launched a 5-year initiative to help Liberia train mental health workers. With only one psychiatrist in the entire country, treating those who suffer from mental illnesses has been almost impossible. Learn how things are changing.

2010 Peace Highlights:

•    Successful Election in Guinea - In June, Guineans voted peacefully in the country’s first Democratic elections since their independence 52 years ago.  

•    President Carter Negotiates Release of American in North Korea - In an August humanitarian mission, former US President Jimmy Carter gained the release of Aijalon Mahli Gomes, an American Teacher imprisoned in North Korea for seven months.

•    Waging Peace: Sudan - On January 9, 2011, the people of Southern Sudan will vote on a referendum for self-determination, marking six years to the day since the Government of Sudan and the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement Army signed a historic peace agreement, ending Africa’s longest civil war.  Carter Center observers are there again as the country prepares to take its next step on the path from conflict to peace and democracy.

We do not expect success overnight. Our experience has shown making progress in little ways over the long term yields the greatest rewards.

Thanks for all of your help this year.

Happy Holidays,

Dr. John B. Hardman
Your Gifts Support...
The reduction of mental health stigma
The prevention of river blindness
The observation of free & fair elections
Worldwide humanitarian efforts
TAKE ACTION: Congratulate Nigeria and Niger!
TAKE ACTION: Share our holiday e-cards!
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