So, what was 2012’s worst humanitarian disaster?

Ed Cairns, an Oxfam senior policy adviser, looks back on a very mixed year in humanitarian crises. You might not have noticed it from the headlines, but this year Oxfam has responded to more crises than ever before. Not megadisasters like Haiti’s earthquake in 2010, but the daily struggle for survival that has just got worse in places like the West …

Typhoon Bopha’s terrible blow to Philippine seaweed farmers

Typhoon Bopha (known in the Philippines as Typhoon Pablo) has devastated the seaweed farmers of Hinatuan, who were only just starting to recover from 2011’s Typhoon Washi (local name Sedong). Dante Dalajaban draws a parallel with the recent knockout of celebrated Filipino boxer Manny Pacquiao. “Our preparation proved to be no match against Bopha.” In one devastating blow, Typhoon Bopha …

What’s your vision for the future of agriculture?

Forecasts indicate world food production must grow at least fifty per cent by 2050, to feed a population of nine billion people. But can this be done in a way that eradicates hunger, preserves the environment, and ensures farming is an attractive and viable career path? Following on from the recent lively discussion on Making the Food System Work for …

Tackling poor governance — where to begin?

People’s ability to claim their rights is hampered by poorly governed or weak institutions. On the UN’s Human Rights Day, we’re launching a new tool to help practitioners to plan programmes that put governance considerations at their core. Jo Rowlands, Oxfam’s Senior Global Programme Adviser on Governance and Institutional Accountability explains more. “No substantial famine has ever occurred in any independent and …

Casiguran march for justice: farmers walk to oppose ‘legalised land grabbing’

120 farmers, fisherfolk and indigenous peoples from Casiguran in the Philippines are currently marching to Manila in hopes of drawing attention to a new development, which they describe as ‘legalised land grabbing.’ Although the Philippines has enacted laws that are supposed to secure tenurial rights for small-scale farmers, fishers and indigenous peoples, the sorry state of asset reform law implementation continues to …

An AIDS-free generation is in sight but action is needed now

On World AIDS Day, Mohga Kamal-Yanni outlines the four main challenges facing all countries that are dealing with HIV and AIDS. In 2001, I stood in front of a huge picture in the UN building in New York. It showed an African woman on her death bed with another woman hold her hand. It said: “You must not die alone”. I …