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Debbie Wolfe

World Vision

Debbie Wolfe worked as a journalist with the CBC for 10 years. She now works for children, through international aid and development agency World Vision. Debbie helps convey the stories of girls and boys around the world who are battling poverty and injustice. She has two sons of her own, and lives in Toronto.
Jacob Ammentorp Lund via Getty Images

Most Child Sex Tourists Are 'Situational Offenders', Not Pedophiles

We tend to assume that the tourists who abuse children are pedophiles, people with a clinical disorder and an exclusive sexual inclination for pre-pubescent children. We imagine them carefully planning their trips, with children front and centre. But the fact is, the majority of child sex tourists are in fact "situational offenders". They're presented with a situation where they can have sexual contact with a child, and they seize it. The anonymity of being a tourist or traveler often influences their decision, convincing them that they won't get caught.
07/11/2014 08:41 EDT
World Vision Canada

South Sudan: Don't Look Away

Three years ago today, there was dancing on the streets of South Sudan. A new nation had just been born. Having voted to separate from Sudan, the people were bursting with dreams for a free and independent future. But the anniversary of independence is not being marked today with celebrations.
07/09/2014 05:48 EDT
Peter Solness via Getty Images

How To Keep Your Kids Writing and Thinking This Summer

Don't end the conversation with "Yes, that's sad." There are many things to wonder about together. "I wonder who made the decision for this to happen?" or "Who do you think it hurt by this?" are great ways to keep them thinking. Encourage them to take it further: Some questions you can answer; others you can't. Help your child figure out who would be best to write to.
06/25/2014 05:37 EDT
ASSOCIATED PRESS

What Refugees Leave Behind When They Flee Their Homes

As we mark World Refugee Day, the latest figures indicate that more than 50-million human beings alive today have been forcibly displaced from their homes. Whether they're refugees, asylum-seekers, or people displaced within their own countries, these individuals had no choice but to leave the places they once held so dear.
06/20/2014 01:05 EDT
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Child Labour: What's Your Part In The Story?

As Canadian consumers, we have the power to help change the plot for the world's children. It lies in the decisions we make about our purchases. Do we contribute to keeping children trapped and enslaved, or do we make the decisions that help set them free? On the World Day Against Child Labour, we must all consider our roles in the story.
06/12/2014 05:42 EDT
Dan Kitwood via Getty Images

Pray for the Kidnapped Nigerian Schoolgirls

With every day that passes, the Nigerian schoolgirls could be moving further into dangerous territory of all kinds. Exploitation like the kinds they may be facing can have intensely disturbing effects on a child's social, emotional cognitive and spiritual well-being -- as well as their long-term development.
05/10/2014 04:41 EDT
shutterstock

Protecting the World's Children From Malaria

Mosquito bites mean something different in many parts of the world. Working for an international aid and development agency, I've learned about the dangers of malaria, an infectious disease transmitted by the bite of an infected female mosquito. On World Malaria Day, I think about the millions of children who have no bug spray -- not ever.
04/25/2014 12:16 EDT
Getty Images

One Year After the Bangladesh Factory Collapse, I Stood in the Ruins

One year ago on April 24, the Rana Plaza garment factory in Bangladesh collapsed, crushing the life out of more than 1,100 people. The disaster prompted huge outcry on the streets of Bangladesh, and around the world. As a society of shoppers, we did demand the rock-bottom prices that helped create the demand for cheaper and cheaper labour. I've never felt more culpable than when standing in the ruins of Rana Plaza last week.
04/23/2014 05:20 EDT

What World Water Day Really Means

We don't think much about water here in Canada - just turn on the tap and out it pours! But around the world, clean water is more elusive. It can mean the difference between life and death. For World...
03/20/2014 10:27 EDT
Matt Cardy via Getty Images

Overcoming My Fear of Second Hand Clothing

After we moved to Canada, money was still tight for my family. Hand-me-downs from friends were the new threat. Some of them fit okay, but colour was a whole other issue. Much of the light clothing had taken on a grayish tint, from being washed too often with the darks. Most of the dark clothing was faded. But I've overcome that stigma to embrace the many benefits of second hand clothing.
01/08/2014 12:17 EST
AFP via Getty Images

I Grew Up in South Africa During Apartheid

I was born in South Africa, under apartheid -- a white child with every privilege. It was the year 1969, five years after Nelson Mandela was sentenced to life in prison. In my first year at Queen's University, in 1990, Nelson Mandela was finally released from prison. My classmates were euphoric about what this would mean for South Africa. My optimism was more cautious.
12/06/2013 05:39 EST