I really don’t diversify enough in terms of my sources here in this blog, but I just have to recommend this clip of a recent Hans Rosling TED talk about the MDGs. If you don’t have 15 minutes to spare, start at the 11:10 mark. It’s such great stuff, and it’s so relevant to the discussions we’ve been having here on this blog and also internal to Nuru. (As a side note, if you happen to live in New York and ever get the sneaking feeling that Ted talks are just a tiny bit…well…potentially funny, check this out: Jed Talks….another impressive endeavor of my friend Matt Stillman…)

In the clip, Rosling lambasts one section of a recent U.N. report that categorizes a few rather questionable countries (Qatar?, South Korea?, Singapore?) as developing. It’s interesting, because I think his point is basically one of optimism. He’s a data guy, and he’s a development guy, and he gets fired up when people say there’s no hope for places like sub-saharan Africa! The moving bubble graph he shows will tell you that there is indeed hope.

…and it just so happens to depict an indicator that we are considering using here at Nuru, Under-five Mortality Rate. It’s a doozy, and one that hits home for a lot of people as a great indicator of a community’s move from extreme poverty out of it, or in the terms of the Rosling video, a country’s move from developing to developed.

We don’t know yet whether we are going to use this indicator! As Rosling points out in the start of the video, the surveys that are necessary to gather the data that goes into this metric are costly and difficult. We don’t have an extensive budget here at Nuru!

No segue here, I have to report on a few other things. Sorry for the lack of elegance….

Janine is nearing the end of her work related to our forthcoming CHW model! She has researched nine organizations in the healthcare development industry, and she’s working together with Lindsay Cope to decide on recommendations as to all aspects of the model that we will employ.  I will go ahead and report, though, that Janine is feeling a tad daunted by making this recommendation. We always iterate here at Nuru. We always iterate. SO, whenever a recommendation as to a course of action is made, the recommender has to be prepared for perhaps many iterations of the course of action.  It is OK, though. Being willing to iterate is part of being humble, open to feedback, and willing to know when things are going wrong.

Janine has had tremendous help from one of our most amazing volunteers, Adam Terese. Adam is such a help to Nuru, and has been for a while. He is amazing. We have many other amazing volunteers here at Nuru on the research team. These folks are so generous. We have two people working with Lindsey Kneuven to develop a new education model, two working with Chelsea Barabas to develop a leadership curriculum, two working with Lindsay Cope on healthcare projects, and several other volunteers generously giving their time to do one-off projects on a variety of topics for us! Pretty amazing.

Until next week…