Debbie Wolfe
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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.

Entries by Debbie Wolfe

Spring Clothes Shopping With A Heart For Child Labourers

(0) Comments | Posted April 23, 2015 | 9:06 AM

According to an Ipsos poll, when shopping for clothes, 76 per cent of Canadians feel stress that they're paying too much for something while just 59 per cent are concerned about child labour. Debbie Wolfe explores what this means for children like Jewel.

With the sun shining brighter...

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Look Beyond Your Own Fridge on World Health Day

(1) Comments | Posted April 7, 2015 | 8:56 AM

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On World Health Day April 7, World Vision is calling on Canadians to sign a petition asking our government to expand efforts to keep the world's most vulnerable children healthy.

My husband and I had a debate this morning about how long cold...

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The Hunt for Easter Chocolate That's Free From Child Labour

(1) Comments | Posted April 2, 2015 | 8:30 AM

For me, Easter Sunday has always been a time of beauty, hope, and new beginnings. The sun is often shining, birds have returned from the south, and there's that happy smell of wet soil in the air. Perhaps best of all, my growing sons still love to run around the...

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For Syria's Child Refugees, Four Years With No School Can Be Devastating

(0) Comments | Posted March 17, 2015 | 8:56 AM

Last week, World Vision, Oxfam and Save the Children, among other international aid agencies, released a scathing critique of how the United Nations Security Council has failed to alleviate the suffering of civilians in Syria. Four years after the start of the crisis, conflict is only intensifying. And...

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How Your March Break Can Break the Chains of Child Labour

(0) Comments | Posted March 12, 2015 | 5:50 PM

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Canadians travelling to warm spots this March Break may be approached by child labourers selling trinkets or souvenirs. In El Salvador, this young girl carries heavy basket of water bottles to peddle to tourists.

I had a moment of truth last year, when...

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Sponsoring a Child Overseas Can be Sunshine in the Darkness

(0) Comments | Posted March 11, 2015 | 12:12 PM

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In the film About Schmidt, Jack Nicholson plays a man filled with disappointment. He's spent his life working at a job that could have been done by anybody.

On his first day of retirement, Schmidt goes to the office to...

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Give Valentine's Gifts That Are Child Labour Free

(0) Comments | Posted February 12, 2015 | 8:14 AM

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It's been eight dark, frigid weeks since Christmas. You've shoveled enough snow to build an indoor ski hill and forgotten what your hair looked like before wooly hats.

Then suddenly, it's Valentine's Day. Sound the trumpets! Red hearts are everywhere...and isn't that Frank...

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Why Children Overseas May Not Have Been "Good" This Year

(0) Comments | Posted December 23, 2014 | 11:06 AM

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Nadia (holding baby) and her family live in a refugee camp after fleeing attacks on their village in Iraq. "I miss school the most," she says.

Every Christmas, my son writes a letter to Santa. He describes the many good things he's done...

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5 Ways to Honour Your Child's Teacher This Holiday Season

(4) Comments | Posted November 28, 2014 | 4:53 PM

When my boys were small, I thanked their teachers all of the time. I was always in the classroom, rummaging in desks for forgotten homework assignments, or asking for clarification about an after-school play rehearsal or soccer practice. I even got to volunteer for pizza lunches.

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Many of Today's Wars Have Smaller Soldiers

(0) Comments | Posted November 11, 2014 | 7:23 AM

Today's conflicts are smaller in scale than the world wars on which we normally focus come Remembrance Day. But tragically, so are many of the soldiers. There are some 250,000 child soldiers in the world today, mostly in Africa. Most are forcibly conscripted by both rebel groups and...

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The Gift of Radio for Children Facing Ebola

(0) Comments | Posted November 3, 2014 | 11:35 AM

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For children in Sierra Leone isolated to stay safe from the Ebola virus, radio is a teaching tool and a lifeline.


In October of 1995, I drove cross-country from Vancouver to Toronto in a rickety Hyundai Pony that flooded up to...

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Helping Kids Understand the Gift of Food This Thanksgiving

(0) Comments | Posted October 7, 2014 | 12:40 PM

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Children in Swaziland who rarely ate fresh vegetables now have them for lunch, while maintain their own school garden.


It happens every year. We go around the Thanksgiving table, each family member sharing something for which they're grateful. With two sons...

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When Back-to-School Shopping for Your Kids, Consider the Kids Who Made Those Supplies

(0) Comments | Posted August 27, 2014 | 12:34 PM

Every August, I write a blog directed at readers doing back-to-school shopping for their kids. I remind them that while the sales are great at this time of year, there's a story behind every price tag. I urge moms and dads to consider the global economy that keeps Western prices...

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Why I'm Grateful For the Daily Chaos In My Life

(0) Comments | Posted August 11, 2014 | 8:38 PM

It was 4:22 p.m. yesterday when my blood pressure shot up. My head began to pound. I felt the urge to run to my car and drive very, very far away from my house in Toronto.

I had just returned from my annual summer vacation with my family. We...

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

(6) Comments | Posted July 11, 2014 | 8:41 AM

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In Cambodia, this puppet show of a strange foreigner who lures a vulnerable child to a hotel room was used by World Vision to raise awareness of the issue.


Summer is a time when thousands of Canadians travel abroad to escape...

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South Sudan: Don't Look Away

(0) Comments | Posted July 9, 2014 | 5:48 PM

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. Finally, they were to live lives of democracy and peace. Newly discovered...

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Helping Kids Build the "Gratitude Muscle" on Canada Day

(0) Comments | Posted June 29, 2014 | 3:43 AM

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There are concrete blessings for kids who learn to count their blessings, the Wall Street Journal recently reported. In one study, high school students with high levels of gratitude reported having stronger marks, less depression and envy, and a...

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How To Keep Your Kids Writing and Thinking This Summer

(1) Comments | Posted June 25, 2014 | 5:37 PM

Earlier this year, a letter sent by a child to the LEGO toy company went viral. Seven-year-old Charlotte complained about the lack of opportunities for the LEGO girls available at her local toy store. She noticed that the girl figures only visit the beach and the shops, while...

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What Refugees Leave Behind When They Flee Their Homes

(0) Comments | Posted June 20, 2014 | 1:05 PM

My sons have watched The Hobbit movies more times than I can count. They love the mythic adventure of a little man named Bilbo Baggins, who embarks on an unlikely mission to help a band of rough-and-ready dwarfs reclaim their mountain home. That mountain is now occupied by a ruthless...

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Most Child Labourers Get No Day in Court

(0) Comments | Posted June 17, 2014 | 8:23 AM

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A girl forced into prostitution learns to weave at a trauma recovery centre in Phnom Penh, while awaiting the trial of her alleged abuser.

I've been summoned for jury selection. This morning, I reported to the Superior Court of Justice in downtown Toronto,...

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