"What worries me a lot is whether we are focusing on any given day the crisis of today and forgetting about the crisis of yesterday and the day before [...] whether we are forgetting the crises that are not in the news today."

Big or small, Joyce Msuya has always found ways to give back. Now for Humanitarian Affairs and Deputy Emergency Relief Coordinator in (Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs), she oversees the global response to the world’s worst crises.

“For me, personally, it's a privilege to serve humanity. I wake up every morning and think about how I can shift the needle in someone's life.”

From Gaza to Ukraine, Haiti to Sudan, the UN estimates 300 million people around the world are in need of life-saving assistance and protection. In this episode, Joyce Msuya reflects on keeping hope alive despite waking to fresh crises every day, on the shocking impacts of climate-related extreme weather, and on the long-term benefits of a strict boarding school.

“A peaceful world would be a gift for all humanity. There's just too much suffering everywhere. If we can live a better and more peaceful world for our children than what we are currently living with, then humanity will be well served.”

 

 

 

Multimedia and Transcript

 

 
 

 

 

 

Melissa Fleming 00:00

I find it so inspiring when I meet somebody who is facing the big challenges of our world, especially war, and people forced to flee and living in just dire circumstances, and yet they still press on, just trying to make this world a better place.

 

Joyce Msuya 00:22

For me, personally, it's a privilege to serve humanity. I wake up every morning and think about how I can shift the needle in someone's life.

 

Melissa Fleming 00:42

Joyce Msuya is from Tanzania. These days she is the Assistant Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Deputy Emergency Relief Coordinator at OCHA, the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs. From the United Nations, I'm Melissa Fleming. This is Awake at Night. Welcome, Joyce.

 

Joyce Msuya 01:13

Thank you very much, Melissa. Thank you for having me.

 

3 tips for young female leaders from Joyce Msuya

On International Women's Day, Joyce Msuya - in her former role of Deputy Executive Director of the UN Environment Programme - shares three tips for young female leaders.

March 8, 2021

 

 

Melissa Fleming 01:17

It's a bit of a mouthful, your title. We'll get into the nature of your job but I'm trying to imagine what it must be like for you when you face your work every morning, because you're dealing in that role with one humanitarian disaster after another. We have Gaza, Sudan, and Ukraine and so many other places around the world. Do you dread waking up and facing it all?

 

Joyce Msuya 01:45

So it's a very interesting question. I usually wake up around 5:36 a.m. You know, usually after I had kids somehow my alarm clock around 6 a.m., I'm up. With this job, I wake up and I have no idea what type of crisis, from where, at what scale will hit my day. It requires a lot of adaptability, flexibility, patience, and a lot of Zen moments, because by the time things come to me, they're a crisis.

Whether it's about our staff who need to be evacuated, earthquakes, natural disasters, flooding, war, conflict, engaging with Member States who may be happy or unhappy about something else. We work very closely with NGOs, including national NGOs, the issues around protection of civilians, gender-based violence. So I wake up in the morning frankly not knowing what kind of menu of options and most of them are not so good that I have to deal with.

 

Melissa Fleming 03:11

So, how would you describe your job to somebody who knows nothing about OCHA?

 

Joyce Msuya 03:19  

I would describe my job as a conductor in an orchestra that is moving, singing at a speed that never slows down, and the different members of the orchestra are so diverse. From communities we serve, to the donors who finance our operations, to humanitarians on the ground who are delivering assistance in very difficult contexts, but also OCHA staff. I mean, OCHA is a coordination agency of the United Nations for humanitarian operations. We really have less than 3000 personnel. So you think about all the crises in the world and the offices we have globally. But our massive comparative advantage - we are the balm of the humanitarian community. We bring the whole community together in coordinating different responses in different contexts.

So it's a conductor slash coordinator role, but at the very high level of leadership. For me, personally, it's a privilege to serve humanity. I wake up every morning and think about how I can shift the needle in someone's life. Maybe that woman, child who has lost hope that the world has forgotten about them. How can I make them feel? Ah, someone, the United Nations humanitarian community, our partners care.

 

Melissa Fleming 05:17

And that's why the conductor role is so important because without those donors injecting the funding that allows your humanitarians around the world to deliver for those people you picture who need that assistance and need that hope.

 

Joyce Msuya 05:34

Absolutely. And what also inspires me, and I appreciate is if you look, especially after the pandemic, most of our donors went through a very tough economic situation. But if you look at their contributions and unwavering support to the humanitarian community, it's been constant. So I appreciate the selflessness of our funding partners across the globe that allow us to do our work.

 

Melissa Fleming 06:07

But sometimes it is uneven. I wonder if that frustrates you. I mean, some... Just the reality of things that geopolitics… Some conflicts on the humanitarian side are funded better than others. I remember in the Ukraine situation there was an appeal to help the people of Ukraine who were displaced inside the country, who were suffering inside the country, the refugees who fled. And actually that appeal was probably one of the best-funded appeals ever. And yet there were some appeals in Africa that received only, you know, single digit responses. Does that frustrate you?

 

Joyce Msuya 06:49

It does frustrate me. But also it gives me... I'm an eternal optimist by nature. What frustrates me, actually, what worries me a lot is whether we are focusing on any given day the crisis of today and forget about the crisis of yesterday and the day before. I think the other frustration is humanitarians have had to step in and help natural disasters. We saw the earthquake in Türkiye and Syria. The impact of El Ni?o and La Ni?a. I was in Somalia months ago, and I was talking to communities and farmers. They don't even get time to recover from heavy floods before they hit drought. So climate change is bringing another multidimensional challenge.

What gives me hope is that the opportunity to serve humanity unites us. So we are trying to be creative, joining hands with our partners across the UN system, our NGO partners. We are trying to get into the private sector. So because we are the conductor in the orchestra, how can we bring them to be part of the village that serves humanity? And we have, for example, if you look at the Sudan conflict, there are countries that are willing to go and help different parts of Sudan. And we are trying to say, 'Okay, all hands on deck. Can we join hands to serve humanity.' And that's what gives me hope.

 

Msuya next to a seedling is surrounded by people clapping

Joyce opens up the new OCHA Somalia office in Mogadishu in 2024 by planting a tree with her hands. Photo: ?OCHA/Farhasaad Shahid


Msuya speaks into a small microphone as she is being recorded on a smart phone

Joyce is interviewed in Qanshaley IDP camp in Doolow, where she witnessed and spoke to female farmers growing crops and planting seeds ahead of the droughts. This was on a joint mission with Beth Bechdol, Deputy of FAO. Somalia, 2024 - Photo: ?UNSOM/Steven Candia

Msuya shows off her hand-henna while a woman standing behind her hugs her

In her mission to Somalia, she met Fadumo, a once displaced young woman who has learnt Henna to provide for her family. March 2024 - Photo: ?OCHA


 

Melissa Fleming 08:36

Love that - the village who serves humanity. And you try to bring them all together because it is an all-hands-on-deck effort. And it is the humanitarians that are always called upon. So it can't be the same group of humanitarians. They're just not enough of us.

 

Joyce Msuya 08:57

No. And most of the countries that I have gone to - Yemen, Syria… I remember traveling all over Yemen for ten days across the country and going down this spiral road down to Hodeidah. And I met amazing humanitarians, women-led organizations in the middle of nowhere. And they were not even thinking about themselves. They were thinking, 'How can I deliver assistance, whether it's food or medicine to a person who suffers more than me?' And yet they had nothing. I think of, for example, UN staff, OCHA staff that I met who have been away from their families for years just jumping from Afghanistan to Yemen to Syria. And I admire them. They are our true heroes on the ground, really.

 

Melissa Fleming 10:00

It seems that humanitarian workers serving in the most difficult places are what gives you the most inspiration.

 

Joyce Msuya 10:10

They do. And, you know, sometimes, Melissa, when I'm here in New York and I'm attending meetings, I really reflect on the people that I've met and the communities, the colleagues that I'm serving and leading, and ask myself, 'Am I actually adding value to their lives in these meetings or whatever I'm doing when I'm away from them?' So they give me a sense of purpose.

 

Melissa Fleming 10:41

I know you also don't spend all your time here in headquarters in New York. You're traveling quite a lot. Is there an encounter you've had recently that's really struck you during your travels?

 

Joyce Msuya 10:57

One encounter that is still in my mind actually was a joint visit that I did to Somalia with my friend, my sister, an Assistant Secretary-General of FAO, Beth. And we decided to do a joint visit to go to Somalia and celebrate the International Women's Day in one of the most remote parts of Somalia - Doolow. It was my first time to travel to Somalia. We spent some time in Mogadishu, traveled to Doolow on International Women's Day. We met a group of four women who had moved seven times very close to the border of Ethiopia because of either drought or conflict or looking for fertile land.

And I was looking at the woman leader who was talking to us, and she had this beautiful, beautiful skin and resilience and talking about how that piece of land with the support of humanitarians and FAO has provided her and her family goats that she has been able to sell. And she told me out of the goats that she was selling she could send her seven children to school. And we could see the school from their farm in the middle of nowhere. And she was very proud about her dignity, her ability to send her children to school. And I asked her, what is her wish as a mother. I'm a mother of two. She has seven. And she said, '探花精选 for my children, good education, and food.' And I was thinking about myself. These are exactly the same aspirations I have for my children.

 

Melissa Fleming 13:13

There are at least three horrific raging wars going on, big ones - Sudan, Ukraine, Gaza. When you think about everything that's going on in the world, I'm just wondering what keeps you awake at night?

 

Joyce Msuya 13:39

I think what I know for sure that keeps me awake at night is the thought, or thoughts actually, whether we are forgetting the crises that are not in the news today. Whether we are forgetting people who are suffering, who are falling through the cracks simply because we are focusing on the three big. You know, this morning I was talking about DRC. After that I had to meet with a team to speak about Afghanistan.

 

Melissa Fleming 14:12

And then we have Haiti.

 

Msuya leans in listening intently to a young child at a table with samples on display
Msuya sitting with Al Naser School students inside a tent

 

Joyce Msuya 14:13

We have Haiti. Yemen with the Red Sea eruptions. Also, Syria. So what keeps me awake really is the balancing and whether as a global community we are actually looking at every... Every life matters, you know. What keeps me awake is the financing. If you look at our humanitarian response plans, almost all of them are underfunded. And yet the basket of crises keeps on piling up, you know. If you look at our funding partners, they have given us so much. So this stretch of not just the funders, but also humanitarians on the ground to respond to the crises. So the funding, the crises’ number, scale, new, old. In a very polarized world as well.

 

Melissa Fleming 15:19

You must in your role have to be very concerned about the humanitarians trying to deliver aid in Gaza, which has proven so dangerous. UNRWA among other UN organizations have lost over 190 at least colleagues. How do you prepare for the day when you know that all of these humanitarians are putting themselves in harm's way?

 

Joyce Msuya 15:55

Look, Melissa, I mean, I have huge, huge admiration and respect for humanitarians, including OCHA staff who are coordinating the response on the ground, the Humanitarian Coordinator who has just moved to the region. How they have been absolutely committed even in the worst days, to say, 'No. We are here. We are staying. We are delivering.' We worry a lot about safety and security for them, the unpredictability of attacks. I think what has been the most challenging part of the Gaza crisis is you can't really plan. Sometimes I feel we're just scratching the surface.

 

Melissa Fleming 16:49

Isn't it incredibly frustrating to know that you actually have the means to prevent the famine, to deliver food to those malnourished children in the north? And that you're being impeded from getting to them.

 

Joyce Msuya 17:08

It's very frustrating. It's constant negotiations. Constant, constant negotiations. So we've seen how many humanitarians have been killed. I mean, I remember one morning waking up and we had to think about how do we help some of our staff family members to just cross over to get medical treatment? It's not even safety. And the kinds of investments in negotiations. Famine is looming. Even getting trucks in and food. Leave alone food, medical supplies. I think about the civilian infrastructure, hospitals, mothers who have to deliver babies who may need immunization, you know.

And this feeling of helplessness, which is very foreign to so many humanitarians because the natural instinct is - let me go and help. Coupled with the frustration of seeing painful images, photos, knowing colleagues who have been injured or their families, and yet not being able to do anything about it. So this is painful. I will not hide. This is painful. UNRWA and national NGOs have been doing incredible work because they have all the machinery and the people on the ground, and they are committed and they're working super hard. And I sometimes feel, 'My gosh! These are people. This is their community.' You know. And they're still focusing, delivering assistance to others who are suffering more, if you can even put it that way, than themselves.

 

Melissa Fleming 19:14

They're displaced themselves, most of them.

 

Joyce Msuya 19:17

Yeah.  

 

Melissa Fleming 19:20

It is incredibly worrying and at the same time it is inspiring to see their drive to just help their community and do what they can.

 

Joyce Msuya 19:31

They're our heroes. I mean, humanitarians on the ground across the world - they are our heroes. We still have staff, for example, in Sudan, who are still delivering, negotiating, and talking to parties to conflict, just to open that door so convoys could pass through and deliver supplies and putting themselves at risk. So they are our true, true heroes.

 

Melissa Fleming 20:01

You've seen firsthand the impact of climate change, especially, I believe in southern and eastern Africa. And last year, you were in Mozambique in the wake of the devastating Cyclone Freddy. What did you witness?

 

 

Joyce Msuya 20:19

I witnessed... So I traveled to southern Africa, particularly Mozambique, which frankly cyclones are the norm. What I witnessed was a combination of constant impact of climate on economy, on communities. Just inability to plan what is going to happen in the following these cyclones and resilient infrastructures in a country like Mozambique, which is a low-income country. So when I met with communities and government officials, they were talking about once a cyclone has hit, they are planning for the next one. But more importantly, imagine from a development perspective, how do you plan for constant repairs of dams? Yeah.

But I also saw hope believe it or not, the eternal optimist in me. The communities embraced early warning and anticipatory action. So we visited communities in the northern part of Mozambique, Mocimboa da Praia, where there was intense capacity building. And through the local chiefs, communities could anticipate when the cyclone will be coming and start moving to the inner part of the country. And they got some support, including from humanitarians, but also development partners, to actually use drone technology to project and predict when a cyclone would hit, and start moving the communities and the livestock away from the areas of impact. That was hope for me.

 

Melissa Fleming 22:16

And I believe the UN is developing this early warning system that will help communities in places like Mozambique even more with that kind of alarm.

 

Joyce Msuya 22:26

Exactly. And what inspired me from Mozambique... I went up north to Kenya and Tanzania, and Tanzania was hit by floods. And guess what? The Tanzanian government requested experts from Mozambique because of their experience in dealing with cyclones to help them, and how to plan and prepare the communities for the next flood season.

 

Melissa Fleming 22:56

You are from Tanzania.

 

Msuya sits on a blanket outdoors with women and their children

Joyce meets a group of women in Mocímboa da Praia district in Cabo Delgado, Mozambique. November 2023 - Photo: ©OCHA/Mario Mangazi

Msuya stands next to the back of a delivery track while a man wearing a blue vest talks with her

Joyce observed the thorough checking of relief items at the Transshipment Hub. Vaccines, reproductive health kits and blankets were among the aid thoroughly checked on this day before crossing from Türkiye to north-west Syria in trucks. July 2022 - Photo: ©OCHA/Madevi Sun-Suon


 

Joyce Msuya 22:58

Born and raised.

 

Melissa Fleming 22:59

Born and raised in. What was it like going back in this context?

 

Joyce Msuya 23:04

You know, I have to tell you, Melissa, I've had quite an interesting journey. How was it going back? Very humbling. I was born and raised in Tanzania. Tanzania has over 150 different ethnic groups. We have Muslims. We have Christians. And I think when I was growing up in Tanzania, I took the country, the peace, the stability, the harmony for granted. I really, really did. So just the last year's example. You know, northern part of Mozambique speaks Swahili. So I felt at home with my Kiswahili language from Tanzania. But then when I was traveling, I said, 'My gosh! We've never had this in Tanzania.' The floods and the cyclones, the constant attacks of climate change.

So when I went to Tanzania and then Tanzania was hit by flood, and I became a connector because I had just come from Mozambique. I felt quite humbled that, 'Wow, imagine if I didn't have a career at the UN, would I have known? If I did not work for OCHA, would I have known what Mozambique had done? Probably not.' So when I went to see Madam President and I was there to discuss the refugees, I had messages from UNHCR in Kigoma from the Democratic Republic of Congo crisis. I had that knowledge from Mozambique, which I [inaudible], which led to the two countries exchange [inaudible]. So it was very humbling.

 

Melissa Fleming 24:40

You were able to give back to your country.

 

Joyce Msuya 24:41

Yeah. Give back. Give back, yes.

 

Melissa Fleming 24:44

What part of Tanzania did you grow up in?

 

Joyce Msuya 24:47

So I was born and raised in Dar es Salaam. My roots, deep roots are in Kilimanjaro, Usangi mountains. If you are traveling to Moshi or Arusha, you climb up the mountains for 45 minutes. It was 45 minutes because the roads, there were no roads basically. It was rocky. From very early on of my life our parents were saying we have to go and volunteer in the village. I think they were teaching us, six of us, to be very normal and not city children. So every Christmas we would cook food - pilau, chapati, all this yummy Tanzanian food - and actually bring it to church, mosque or orphans as a way of giving back to the village. So I didn't grow up meaning living there, but the sense of who I am, and my values were very much shaped by my visits regularly, sometimes four times a year, to my village.

 

Melissa Fleming 25:51

And your school, I believe, was also quite unique.

 

Joyce Msuya 25:55

It was very unique. It was a missionary school which was given back to the government after independence. Very strict. And we had to... It was a self-reliance public school. What that meant is you wake up in the morning, you clean, you know, your dormitory and make sure your bed is made. And we had this sister, Catholic sister, who would come and measure the 90-degree angle to make sure that the bed was made at the corner at that level. Because it was self-reliance, we also had to go to the farm. So farming corn. I know how to plant corn and take care of corn. We had to wash livestock because we needed milk from the cows and the food, and the milk will come into our dining room because it was a self-reliance school. We had to wear uniforms seven days a week, so there was no competition or classes.

And the school was very, very difficult to get in, all academics. And you had two choices of classes. Either you do sciences or arts. Physics, chemistry, biology or physics, chemistry, math or history, geography, and something else. So my parents were unapologetically tiger parents and science was the foundation. So I did physics, chemistry, biology. But more importantly, I think I was educated as a whole person, being independent from farm to food, but also needlework and cooking. There were cooking competitions and I developed a strong hobby of cooking.

 

Melissa Fleming 27:47

So why did your parents send you there?

 

Joyce Msuya 27:52

So we asked them. They had two reasons. One is they were both born from the villages, and they started as community development. So they were scared that if we were raised in the city, we would be spoiled. And they wanted us, and I quote my late mother, they wanted us to be “normal Tanzanians” that could mingle with anyone from any class, from any tribe, from any religion. The second was academics. That school was known to be very strong academically, but also self-reliance and work ethic. Maybe that's why I still wake up at 5:00, because even then you had to wake up, clean, make your bed, go to church or mosque. You're expected to get A’s in school. And after you eat, also clean up after yourself. So it was this combination of academic excellence but also extremely hard work which helped me later in life actually.

 

 

Melissa Fleming 29:00

Do you still make your bed so that that nun could give you... you pass the inspection of the nun?

 

Joyce Msuya 29:07

I think now I'm doing 75 maybe degrees rather than 90. But the nun was 90, and she would come with a ruler and say, 'No. You need to go back. You need to remake your bed.'

 

Melissa Fleming 29:19

Did you think back then that you would go on to have an international career?

 

Joyce Msuya 29:24

Never. I mean, you know, when I was growing up in Tanzania, it was pre-Cold War and Tanzania was closed. Yeah, we didn't have TVs, etc. But I know one thing Weruweru Secondary School did to me, and also my parents - they instilled confidence that I could compete anywhere in the world. Even without TV, social media, I knew that if it's physics, chemistry, biology, you bring it on, I will compete at Cambridge. That confidence, I had it. And it came from the school. We had the headmistress, Mama Kamm, and my parents, who never differentiated girls and boys. There were four boys and two girls. So I was treated exactly like my brothers.

And I wanted to become a doctor. But long story short, I realized I did not like blood, just the seeing of blood. So I said, 'No, I can't be a doctor.' Because the choices then in Tanzania - doctor, engineer or teacher or lawyer. And I went into biochemistry and immunology. I enjoyed doing centrifuges and test tubes and experiments. This was during AIDS when AIDS was booming. I wanted again to give back to Africa because it was a big problem. Then I got bored in the lab. I said, ‘I need people interaction.’ So I switched to public health when I was in Canada doing graduate school. And then I joined the World Bank back in early '98, January 12th, doing health projects. I spent 20 years and went to UNEP.

 

Melissa Fleming 31:18  

I understand you were the first African to work in the World Bank in China.

 

Joyce Msuya 31:24

African woman, correct.

 

Melissa Fleming 31:26

How was that?

 

Joyce Msuya 31:29

It was weird and interesting. Weird because I took a risk. By then I was married, and I had two kids. To just say, 'Let's go and experience China because it was a growing economy.' I didn't realize... I had never been reminded how I look is different. So when I showed up in China, I remember being in the office of the World Bank, then I saw the national staff would pass by and look. But they were curious because they had never seen someone who looks like me. So that was a bit weird, an awakening moment. Like, wow, okay. And I guess I'm different.

But also it was weird because I did not expect at least our Chinese colleagues - and maybe, definitely I was naive - how welcoming they would be to someone who is so different from them. So I learned a lot about how to cook Chinese food. We were invited to their homes. It was easy to travel outside Beijing. We immersed ourselves in Mandarin - me, my husband, and children. So that was weird. It was one of the most fulfilling career experiences because I learned how to take a long-term view in planning, because I was dealing a lot with the Chinese government. How they take five, ten years view, which is a skill when I became a leader. It’s actually helping me to think about what are the potential implications of what I'm deciding now five, ten years from now. Fascinating.

 

Joyce Msuya: A Window of Opportunity

In her former role of UNEP Acting Executive Director, Joyce Msuya addressees the world's environment leaders attending the 4th UN Environment Assembly in Nairobi. Hundreds of world leaders, civil society, private sector partners and citizens to craft solutions with resolve and make the kinds of changes humanity needs to thrive. #SolveDifferent

March 6, 2019

 

Melissa Fleming 33:22

You made quite a switch and went to the UN Environment Programme in a senior role in Nairobi. It's the headquarters. Is that where your passion for the environment and working to head off the worst effects of climate change started?

 

Joyce Msuya 33:43

So my professional journey has been a tad unconventional. When I turned 50 in 2018, and I was thinking, 'Wow, I've done 20 years or so at the World Bank.' And my children were older. Our daughter had gone to college. I really had this aha reflective moment to say, 'What kind of legacy in Joyce 2.0 I would like to leave for my children?' And climate was the obvious in 2018. That's how frankly I switched from development. And I didn't know anyone at the UN, just applied and I ended up in Nairobi.

The other incentive was because I left Tanzania in '89 to go abroad for studies, and my father was getting old, I wanted to be closer to Kilimanjaro. From Nairobi you cross over to Tanzania. It's a four-hour drive. So again, that village mentality to go back and etc. So that was another incentive as I got older.

And then I really enjoyed working at UNEP and being back in Africa and living there. But then the pandemic hit. I was still happy because in Nairobi you can have good gardens and go for walks. So that helped dealing with the pandemic. And then I was becoming very impatient on impact as I've gotten older. And I said, 'Let me apply for a job at OCHA because of the instant impact that the humanitarian sector gives.'

 

Melissa Fleming 35:31

What kind of world would you like to see?

 

Joyce Msuya 35:37

A peaceful world, united. I mean, I ... Human beings every place I have been, we have so much in common that connects us. But just peace. That for me, a peaceful world, would be a gift.

 

Melissa Fleming 36:01

For all humanity.

 

Joyce Msuya 36:02

For all humanity. There's just too much suffering everywhere. If we can leave a better and more peaceful world for our children than what we are currently living with, then humanity will be well served.

 

Melissa Fleming 36:22

Are you hopeful we can get there?

 

Joyce Msuya 36:24

I'm very hopeful. You just don't give up. We cannot lose hope. Absolutely not.

 

Msuya is in deep discussions at a table with others

Joyce meets with Colombia’s Good Humanitarian Donors Group (GHD) to thank them for their support to OCHA and for their humanitarian action in Colombia. She laid out OCHA’s priorities for the coming years and briefed them on the upcoming Flagship Initiative. May 2023 - Photo: ©OCHA/Marc Belanger

Msuya stands for a photo with young asian students

Joyce speaks to youth at the International Christian University High School in Tokyo. June 2023 - Photo: ©OCHA


 

Melissa Fleming 36:33

Thank you. Thank you for listening to Awake at Night. We'll be back soon with more incredible and inspiring stories from people working against huge challenges to make this world a better and safer place.

To find out more about the series and the extraordinary people featured, do visit un.org/awake-at-night. Do subscribe wherever you get your podcasts and please take the time to review us. It helps more people find the show.

Thanks to my editor Bethany Bell, to Adam Paylor, Josie Le Blond, and my colleagues at the UN: Katerina Kitidi, Roberta Politi, Geneva Damayanti, Tulin Battikhi, Bissera Kostova, Anzhelika Devis, and Carlos Macias. The original music for this podcast was written and performed by Nadine Shah and produced by Ben Hillier. Additional music was by Pascal Wyse.