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

Is It Possible To Do Christmas Without Gifts?

(2) Comments | Posted November 25, 2016 | 10:16 AM

One month until Christmas -- and the countdown begins! November 25 is when I typically shift into full tinsel mode. The decorations come out, and the kids make their wish lists. I begin searching for the ultimate shortbread recipe to unveil at the annual cookie exchange.

This year, the...

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Let's Remember The Child Survivors Of War

(1) Comments | Posted November 11, 2016 | 8:16 AM

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Syrian children wait out the years at this makeshift refugee camp in Lebanon. (All photos by World Vision)

At precisely 11:11 a.m. today, Canadians observe a minute of silence for those who stepped forward to serve during wartime. My grandad, Alan...

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'Location' Really Matters When Natural Disaster Strikes

(0) Comments | Posted November 8, 2016 | 10:20 AM

We've all heard the real estate mantra: "Location, location, location." It means that two identical homes can have completely different value, depending on where they're situated. Location is everything.

Millions of the world's poorest children know this all too well -- especially when natural disaster strikes. When the ground...

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Carve Some Love Into Halloween This Year

(0) Comments | Posted October 25, 2016 | 4:38 PM

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World Vision is asking Canadians to help farmers overseas to feed their families this Halloween. "Carve a Heart" in your pumpkin, and post to social media using hashtag #carveaheart. Photo: World Vision

Our Toronto neighbourhood goes big on Halloween....

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To All The Girls In The World - Including The Daughter I Never Had

(0) Comments | Posted October 11, 2016 | 11:34 AM

On International Day of the Girl Child, I think about a little girl I used to know. She was the daughter I imagined I would have.

I said goodbye to that girl on a cold, February afternoon, in an ultrasound lab in downtown Toronto. I learned that...

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5 Ways To Take The Stress Out Of Thanksgiving

(0) Comments | Posted October 3, 2016 | 4:42 PM

Ah, Thanksgiving. A time of peace, serenity and gratitude, right? Well let's see...

There's the peace of debating about which relatives to spend it with. The serenity of packing, driving, cleaning and cooking. And the gratitude of knowing you can go back to the office on Tuesday.

I hope this...

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Breaking Through the Hunger Barrier So Kids Can Learn

(0) Comments | Posted September 21, 2016 | 2:51 PM

There's an Olympic event in which athletes race cross-country on skis, then shoot a rifle at a target. I've always marveled at their combination of precision and speed.

Most mornings at home, I feel like those athletes. My challenge: getting breakfast into our 14-year-old son. Derrick appears in the kitchen...

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What's To Be Done About The World's Refugees?

(0) Comments | Posted September 19, 2016 | 1:01 PM

"Would you care to fill out an application?"

My husband and I have a small apartment on the main floor of our home. We're currently in the process of showing it to prospective tenants eager to move in next month.

It's unbelievably hard to find a reasonably priced apartment...

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How To Build A Reading Corner In Your Home

(0) Comments | Posted September 8, 2016 | 10:52 AM

Thursday is International Literacy Day, a chance to celebrate the power of reading in children's lives. If you're a book-lover yourself, you may remember curling up with your latest childhood treasure (it was Anne of Green Gables for me!)

With your kids back in the classroom, processing new...

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Remembering Alan Kurdi In My Own Way

(8) Comments | Posted September 2, 2016 | 8:51 AM

This summer, my family lost someone very dear to us. Everything is different now. The first year, I'm told, will be especially tough. We'll be feeling our way through the first Thanksgiving, the first Christmas, the first anniversary of his death.

My dear one was an elderly gentleman, full of...

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Consider Thrift Shops For Back-To-School Outfits

(3) Comments | Posted August 30, 2016 | 6:18 PM

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My sons as a family event this summer, with clothes from our local thrift shop. Check out the younger one's $15 Italian suit! Photo/Debbie Wolfe

The two teenage boys eyed one another with a knowing wink. They had spent two weeks...

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Are Your Kids Ready To Read Again?

(0) Comments | Posted August 18, 2016 | 3:42 PM

Two weeks from Tuesday, millions of Canadian kids will head off to school. Are your kids ready for reading? Many children start the year at a deficit, battling to regain what some educators call the "summer reading loss."

"We know that students do better in school when keep...

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How Tree-Planting Brings Life To The World's Children

(0) Comments | Posted August 8, 2016 | 12:08 PM

Each summer, Canadians longing for a break flood north to our country's forests. I am one of them. Sitting silently among the trees, I can practically hear them breathing. Whether spruce, maple or aspen, the trees inhale the carbon dioxide threatening our planet, and breathe out life-giving oxygen.

There's...

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Unaccompanied Children Fleeing Disaster Deserve Protection

(2) Comments | Posted August 4, 2016 | 10:29 AM

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In the Eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo, an 11-year-old boy fends for himself after being separated from his parents during an attack on their village. (Photo: Kayla Robertson)

The boy wanders alone in the woods, hundreds of kilometres from home. Fighting...

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5 Ways To Keep Kids Learning About The World This Summer

(1) Comments | Posted July 7, 2016 | 5:39 PM

Children learn a lot about the world in school. How do you keep that going this summer?

One week into my kids' summer holidays, they're still relishing the beauty of simply hanging out. All their school binders are tucked away in the basement. There's no homework, no studying, no looming...

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Consider The World's Children As You Outfit Your Kids For Summer

(1) Comments | Posted June 30, 2016 | 4:21 PM

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Stock photo

My kids love Canada Day -- the parades, the picnics and the fireworks. But like many adults, they can't really appreciate what it means to grow up 'glorious and free.' They have no basis for comparison.

What my kids...

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Your Child's Teacher Deserves A Year-End Gift With Heart

(0) Comments | Posted June 27, 2016 | 3:51 PM

school children
Children in places like Ethiopia often don't have books to aid with their learning. Through the World Vision Gift Catalogue, you can help supply a classroom with tools like these. (Photo: World Vision)

One wall of our home is plastered with artwork our boys...

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Why Parenting In A Refugee Camp Can Be So Tough

(4) Comments | Posted June 22, 2016 | 5:52 PM

The temperature hit 35 degrees Celsius at an event to mark World Refugee Day in downtown Toronto this week. There was no breeze, no shade.

Humanitarian workers sweltered in the booths they'd set up, to raise awareness for the world's 65 million refugees. Organizers had provided...

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This Report Gives Canadians A Way To Stop Supporting Child Labour

(1) Comments | Posted June 10, 2016 | 4:14 PM

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In Guatemala, Luisa waters coffee plants all day, lugging heavy bottles on two-hour round trips through the fields. Are her beans sold in Canadian stores? Photo/World Vision

"It's horrible. But what can I do about it?" My friend Maggie's was...

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Soccer Should Not Be The Only Solace For Kids Living In War

(0) Comments | Posted June 8, 2016 | 12:39 PM

With files from Melanie Markham

My son Derrick dreams of Euro 2016 every time his head hits the pillow. The international men's soccer championship kicks off in France this coming Friday.

The last time the Euros were played, Derrick was just 10, more interested in toy...

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