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Summer Human Rights Lecture Series: Many Questions, Few Answers: Reflections on the Intersections Between Human Rights and Humanitarian Aid Work

EVT 516
Jul 25
7:00 pm
Status: No Registration Required

The Stanford Summer Human Rights Program is an interdisciplinary collaboration that explores emerging issues in human rights through a series of courses, public lectures, and films. In 2017, the program will continue the discussion of international human rights in the 21st century, considering broad perspectives on what constitutes human rights in an increasingly diverse and global society. The Summer Human Rights Program is sponsored by Stanford Summer Session in collaboration with Stanford Continuing Studies, the Stanford Master of Liberal Arts program, and the United Nations Association Film Festival (UNAFF).

Many Questions, Few Answers: Reflections on the Intersections Between Human Rights and Humanitarian Aid Work

The mention of humanitarian aid agency Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) (Doctors without Borders) is often immediately associated with emergency medical teams bringing medical aid to vulnerable populations affected by natural disasters, wars, and epidemics around the world. While its key values are neutrality, impartiality, and independence, MSF also works to raise awareness and create debate about these crises through its policy of témoignage (testimony, or bearing witness).

In this program, Marie Tan Kiak Li will share her personal and professional reflections on the intersections between human rights and aid work that she has encountered while providing healthcare in various contexts ranging from war zones in Yemen and the Central African Republic to the ebola epidemic response in Guinea, refugees, returnees in Chad by the Darfur border, and fistula repair in the heartland of Burundi. The questions and dilemmas she will discuss come from her perspective as a non-medical field worker with MSF.

Marie Tan Kiak Li, Humanitarian Aid Worker, Médecins Sans Frontières

Marie Tan Kiak Li, a native of Penang, Malaysia, has worked with the Nobel Peace Prize–winning medical aid organization MSF since 2012. She has served in a variety of non-medical roles ranging from logistician, administrator, and finance controller to human resources coordinator with the emergency pool, and she has supported MSF’s missions in West, Central and East Africa, Asia, the Magreb, and the Middle East. She received an MSc in political sociology from the London School of Economics and Political Science.
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