Global Public Health Capstone Explores Fragile and Vulnerable Settings

Collegiate School students in the Global Public Health senior Capstone are exploring the role of social, cultural, economic, environmental and political factors as they relate to access to health care and quality of life.  
The main mission of the Capstone is to promote global health, eradicate diseases and, in turn, protect human populations around the globe. Given this goal, students are asked, What should we do? How might we effectively and ethically approach the grand problems of caring for a growing global population within their local contexts?

To better understand the unique challenges affecting citizens across multiple regions, both domestically and internationally, John Dau, Collegiate’s Global Scholar-in-Residence, recently joined the Capstone to share the impact fragile and vulnerable settings can have on people. 

More than 1.6 billion people or 22% of the global population live in places where protracted crises - through a combination of challenges such as drought, famine, conflict, population displacement and weak health services - leave them without access to basic care. Fragile settings exist in almost all regions of the world, and these are where half of the key targets in the sustainable development goals, including on child and maternal health, remains unmet. 

Mr. Dau used stories from the work of the John Dau Foundation as it strives to provide health care and nutrition programs to the citizens of South Sudan – one of the most war-torn, impoverished countries on Earth. He illustrated how seemingly simple challenges — a ride to a health care clinic, access to toilets in a refugee camp or vitamins during pregnancy — can escalate into a life or death situation.

Mr. Dau is an influential part of many efforts to bring hope and peace to the people of South Sudan. His continuing partnership with the senior Capstone will provide real and timely connection to citizens whose suffering students seek to understand and positively impact.