World Day of Social Justice

“Social justice is an underlying principle for peaceful and prosperous coexistence within and among nations. We uphold the principles of social justice when we promote gender equality or the rights of indigenous peoples and migrants. We advance social justice when we remove barriers that people face because of gender, age, race, ethnicity, religion, culture or disability.” -United Nations, WDSJ webpage (1)

In 2007, the United Nations General Assembly declared that February 20th be celebrated annually as World Day of Social Justice. A product of rising globalization, World Day of Social Justice encourages nations to devote the day towards the eradication of poverty, inequity, exclusion, and unemployment. While we know these goals cannot be achieved in a day, World Day of Social Justice provides us with a chance to look around our community, locally and globally, with extra purpose and passion. GlobeMed at Tufts and PHASE Nepal share a drive to collaborate and eliminate global health inequity, and we find inspiration in the action taken by the international community in support of global health equity. February 20th has become a day to rally, to dream, to energize, to learn, to grow, and to come together. Especially in the current national climate, it is increasingly important every single day to take action and to create hope.

This February 23rd, GlobeMed at Tufts will be hosting a film screening of Vessel, an award-winning documentary following the work of Rebecca Gomperts, founder of Women on Waves. Dr. Gomperts, a Dutch physician, activist, and artist, made it her life’s work to end the health risks associated with illegal abortions. Dr. Gomperts and her organization work on a ship-turned-clinic that sails to areas where women cannot access legal and safe abortion. Once in international waters, Dr. Gomperts and her crew are trained and authorized to administer abortions and provide contraceptives. They also train local women to administer safe abortions using non-surgical WHO-researched protocols. Through a network of empowerment, Women on Waves has given countless women access to safe abortions, birth control, and invaluable knowledge.

We find this documentary especially relevant after the reenactment of the U.S. Mexico City Policy, also known as the Global Gag. First enacted by President Reagan and most recently reenacted by President Trump, this policy blocks federal funding to NGOs that provide abortion services or counseling as well as those that advocate for the decriminalization or expansion of abortion services.

GlobeMed at Tufts is devoted to social justice, nationally and abroad, and aims to emphasize the importance of self-education and community discussion. Please join us on February 23rd at 6 PM in Tisch 304 for a free screening of Vessel with snacks, discussion, and good company! We hope to foster an open dialogue about the film and World Day of Social Justice, so all thoughts, feelings, and opinions are welcome.

Vessel trailer:

Women on Waves website:


Maternal Care for a Healthier Society

Delivery Room in Achham

This year, Tufts’ GlobeMed chapter has committed to raising money to improve the quality of maternal care provided for the people of Achham by the interventions of Nyaya Health. Since pregnancy is a perfectly normal condition in a healthy woman’s life, and many women will give birth at least once in their lifetimes, it makes sense to direct the attention of a medical facility in this direction.

The value of meticulous prenatal and perinatal care is impossible to overstate; an improvement in the monitoring and treatment of expectant mothers lays the groundwork for the raising of healthy children and the development of a healthier society. As a chapter, it is our hope that the improvement in resources generated by our fundraising efforts allows the medical team at Bayalpata Hospital to provide the expectant parents of Achham with the best care possible.

Presently, Nyaya Health provides for the implementation of routine prenatal and delivery services, including tests for anemia and HIV, standard delivery with the assistance of a qualified midwife or physician. There are also provisions for dealing with relatively common peripartum complications such as pre-eclampsia, obstruction of labor, and breech deliveries.

With increased funding, Nyaya Health is looking to increase the number of services available to pregnant women, specifically in the realm of administering preventive care and treating minor complications during delivery. The medical team hopes to further limit maternal mortality and ensure that as many births as possible occur healthfully and without harm to mother or baby.