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Mongolia [electronic resource]: Wrestling With Change

Close to the Russian border, far removed from Mongolia's polluted and overcrowded capital city of Ulaanbaatar, an ancient herding culture fights to maintain its identity-and its survival. This program examines the nomadic communities of the Mongolian plains and their resistance to change, despite growing pressure on many herders to modernize and migrate to urban areas. Viewers meet some who hold fast to the old ways and some who have already moved to the city, even though they long for the open landscape and acknowledge that "a Mongolian without a horse is like a bird without wings." Scholar Tsedev Dojoo further explores the impact of Mongolia's new emphasis on commercial agriculture, mineral extraction, and other industries.
2010; 2009

Niger [electronic resource]: In the Shadow of Noma

Noma is an acute oral infection that attacks young, malnourished children. If left untreated-which, tragically, is often the case in Africa-it devours bone tissue and permanently disfigures its victims. This unflinching program studies the impact of the pitiless disease and will help viewers assess the ability and readiness of the international community to combat the suffering. Graphic scenes of school-age noma patients are interwoven with commentary from medical experts and heartbreaking accounts from family members who have watched as sons, daughters, and grandchildren succumb to the sickness. The film also describes low-cost interventions that could keep noma from spreading, if resources are made available.
2010; 2009

Rural Challenges [electronic resource]: Case Studies From South India

India is the planet's biggest producer of over 22 different cash crops, making its agricultural economy the second largest in the world. Why then does most of its rural population live below subsistence level, relying on foreign NGOs for aid? This program looks at reasons why working villagers remain in poverty, including government policies that direct funding away from development and towards the urban business boom. Viewers meet several struggling families and learn how microcredit programs are helping them boost their household income.

Maasai on the Move [electronic resource]

The Maasai make a living by sharing their traditional culture with tourists, but they are very much aware of the modern world and its problems. Economic downturns mean less visitors to the Ngorongoro Conservation Area where the Maasai live. Both herding and agriculture have become nearly impossible due to drought, leading to hunger, frustration, and yet more conflict with the government over land use. In this program three Maasai living in the NCA comment on issues the tribe faces today: development and climate change, family relations and marital problems, and the need to educate their children so they can be competitive in the 21st century world.

Mali [electronic resource]: Message From the River

As climate change lays waste to the Niger River, the great Malian city of Timbuktu increasingly resembles a desert landscape. The same is true for much of land-locked Mali, which could, in a worst-case scenario, find itself without water altogether. Incorporating discussions of poverty, population growth, and other issues, this film examines the impact of desertification on two of the nation's indigenous peoples - the fishing-dependent Bozo, who have plied their trade along the Niger for centuries, and the Tuareg, an equally nomadic, pastoral culture threatened by the depletion of desert wells. A Malian environmentalist and a Timbuktu historian both share their expertise.

Angola [electronic resource]: Curse of Oil

Poverty in Africa reminds us that abundant natural resources don't automatically translate into widespread economic wealth. This program brings home the disturbing reality of daily life in Angola-marked by ramshackle houses, open sewers, and a question that grows louder every day: who benefits from the country's vast oil resources? Outlining the nation's colonial and Cold War traumas, the film examines the civil war between MPLA and UNITA forces and the present-day mismanagement of oil revenues stemming from that conflict. Related topics include China's growing role in the country, the tragedy of child hunger and malnutrition, and Angola's widespread problem of land mine injuries.
2009; 2008

Tuvalu [electronic resource]: Keeping Heads Above Water

Scientists expect the island nation of Tuvalu to disappear into the sea during the next few decades. If that is true, what will become of the country's citizens and its unique South Pacific culture? Should the traumatic task of evacuation begin now, and if so, to where and under what circumstances? This program grapples with those questions by interviewing key figures in Tuvalu's government and populace while presenting compelling scenes of the ongoing environmental calamity. Centered on the main island of Funafuti, the film explores the growing significance of climate change issues in Tuvaluan political life and examines plant species that are dying off due to encroaching sea water-leading to more land erosion.
2009; 2008

Global Health and Human Development [electronic resource]

Is good health simply the absence of physical disease, or should emotional well-being also be of concern to global aid organizations? This program profiles the work of Australia's Nossal Institute for Global Health to explain how psychological and social factors impact life expectancy and infant mortality. The video covers basic health needs, food scarcity, distribution of wealth, the UN's Human Development Index and its 2015 Millennium Development Goals, and some sustainable practices that have empowered a community in Ghana to maintain its health without relying on foreign aid.