Blog | From the CEO: Helping Us Move Ahead in Difficult Times

Ambassador (ret.) Mary Ann Peters is the chief executive officer of The Carter Center.

The Center’s work is never easy, even in the best of times, when the world seems eager to embrace the efforts you help make possible in seeking peace, health, and hope for people in need.

So, you can imagine what it is like during less welcoming times, when increased conflict and polarization make everything we do seem just a bit harder, and often much harder.

This is the landscape we face today, where a tension-filled world has put more obstacles in the way of our work and makes our success even more imperative.

A rising tide of nationalism in many countries, backed by economic and military aggression and the unleashing of ethnic resentments, has generated enormous pressures on the vulnerable populations least able to withstand them.

A woman from a refugee camp in Upper Nile state, South Sudan, carries water. Conflicts make the Carter Center’s work more difficult. (Photo: The Carter Center)

For example, as economic forces intensify poverty in sub-Saharan Africa, this same region is experiencing a dramatic increase in refugees due to violent conflict. And a rising tide of isolationism makes those refugees less welcome wherever they try to go.

Certainly so many of the problems we work on, including neglected diseases, violent conflict, and threats to democracy and human rights, compound the others. But we remain steadfast in our pursuit of empowering people to create a better world.

That’s why I want to thank you for your willingness and determination to stand by us in these most difficult of times.

You are the reason we have been able to sustain our successes, so that peace, health, and hope continue to be achievable for millions.

That’s something I never forget, and neither should you.

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