the sprawl of global health conferences

Today marked a weekend full of global health in Ottawa, first at the SUNSIH National Conference and then at the Canadian Conference on International Health.

The hum of global health conferences often detracts from the reality and gravity of ‘health for all’ as a concept. They can take away from the simplicity of understanding that often benefits global health work, and from the openness needed to cultivate the right approaches. Everyone is staking their claim; I watch people trying to make names for themselves, trying desperately to connect into this sprawling web. There are too many words, too many ideas, too many agendas. For each interaction I have with another, I wonder, what is your heart saying to me? Do your words mean something or are they just words? Who are the ones here that are accompanying me on this journey with open eyes and an awareness of the hypocrisy, the superficiality, the conflicts, the layers, the connection? I try to draw these people.

I flew home early to get into a quiet space and reflect on what I’m really supposed to be doing.


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