CBCradio

January 22, 2010

 

Pt 1: Haiti Adoption - Over the next few days, the first contingent of Haitian orphans, adopted by Canadian families, will be arriving in this country. These are children who had been matched with their new families before the earthquake of January 12th. Their expedited arrival in Canada is the result of efforts by both the Canadian and the Haitian governments to fast track foreign adoptions.

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Pt 2: On the Edge - The sound of a skate blade being honed to perfection ... You need a sharp edge, a straight edge, if you're a speed skater. And you want to dance on the edge, maybe go a little over the edge, if you're an Olympic athlete. Because if you don't someone else will. And then they'll be the one climbing that podium.

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Pt 3: Somalia- By now, the people of Somalia are accustomed to living in a state of crisis. Since the Civil War started in 1991, about two million people have been forced to leave their homes because of relentless fighting between Islamists and what remains of a tattered government.

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Today's guest host was Rick MacInnes-Rae.

It's Friday, January 22nd.

The City of Vancouver released a guide listing the top ten ways to be a good host during the Olympic games.

Currently, topping the list: the RCMP will set their TASERS to 'fun'.

This is The Current.

Haiti Adoption - Adoptive Parents

Over the next few days, the first contingent of Haitian orphans, adopted by Canadian families, will be arriving in this country. These are children who had been matched with their new families before the earthquake of January 12th. Their expedited arrival in Canada is the result of efforts by both the Canadian and the Haitian governments to fast track foreign adoptions.

But because of the extent of death and devastation in Haiti, there are now thousands of newly orphaned children orphans whose lives are now in limbo ...a reality that orphanages in Haiti are struggling with.

Melvin and Melanie Brundage, of Nipawin Saskatchewan, were in Haiti to sign adoption papers when the quake hit last week. The couple did manage to get home via cargo plane, but were forced to leave their adoptive son in Haiti. We reached Melvin Brundage at his home this morning in Nipawin, Saskatchewan.

Haiti Adoption - Private Adoption Centre

As we mentioned, the first group of Haitian orphans on their way to Canada were adopted well before the earthquake hit Haiti last week ... in part, thanks to private adoption centres that have been working tirelessly to help match orphans with families.

Jeff Ryan is the vice-president of one such organization, called God's Littlest Angels, Canada. We reached him in Calgary.

Haiti Adoption - Dubinsky

It's a natural impulse. During a humanitarian disaster or conflict, children are the most vulnerable, so we want to get kids out of harm's way as quickly as possible.
But in the some disasters, international adoption can become an unsavoury business. The Quebec government, for example, has put all new adoption applications for Haitian children on hold as part of an international effort to prevent a repeat of the child smuggling.

Our next guest says even the very human response to try to rescue children from a disaster zone as quickly as possible may be misguided. Karen Dubinsky is a professor of global development and history at Queens University. And she's working on a book about Operation Peter Pan, which removed children from Cuba after the revolution. We reached her in Kingston, Ontario.

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For information on Haiti Relief, visit cbc.ca/haitirelief. And for exclusive content, live chats, video, photo galleries, first-hand reports and more ... go to: cbcnews.ca/haiti.
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Listen to Part One:

 

On the Edge

The sound of a skate blade being honed to perfection ... You need a sharp edge, a straight edge, if you're a speed skater. And you want to dance on the edge, maybe go a little over the edge, if you're an Olympic athlete. Because if you don't someone else will. And then they'll be the one climbing that podium.

Any high performance athlete worth their weight in gold... or silver or bronze... is not going to give up trying, even though as they train and develop they face hard choices, and make hard sacrifices. It's all about getting that edge.

But there are some who wonder if the cost to the athletes for those moments of fame and glory are just to high. The Current's producer Dominic Girard prepared a documentary examining that question, it's called On The Edge.


Listen to Part Two:

 

Somalia - Warsameh

By now, the people of Somalia are accustomed to living in a state of crisis. Since the Civil War started in 1991, about two million people have been forced to leave their homes because of relentless fighting between Islamists and what remains of a tattered government.

But even by those standards, the United Nations' latest reports from Somalia have been startling. Since the beginning of January, 63-thousand people have been forced to leave their homes in the south... the region controlled by Al-Shabaab, an Islamist insurgency group. Meanwhile another 14 thousand people have fled the violence. Abdurrahman Warsameh is a freelance journalist in Mogadishu.

Somalia - UNHCR

The story of the evacuation of Abdurrahman Warsameh's family is all too common. The United Nations High Commission for Refugees is keeping track of the numbers of displaced people, and for more on that, we were joined by Roberta Russo. She's with the UNHCR in Nairobi.

Somalia - World Food Program

The increasing violence in Somalia has affected more than just the local people. Aid organisations are also leaving, including the World Food Program. Just over two weeks ago, it suspended its operations in southern Somalia because of threats from Al-Shabaab. Peter Smerdon is with the World Food Program in Africa. And Ali Yusuf Hersi is an independent aid consultant in Nairobi. We reached them both in Nairobi, Kenya.

Music Bridge

Artist: Thievery Corporation
Cd: Asia Lounge: Third Floor
Cut: 13, Demasked
Label: SPV U.S.

Last Word

Canada has lost one a true renaissance man yesterday, although that sounds like a highfalutin' term for such a down-to-earth guy. Paul Quarrington was an acclaimed musician, screenwriter and non-fiction writer and a lover of hockey and fishing ... in addition to being one of Canada's most decorated and beloved fiction writers. He won the Governor-General's award and the Stephen Leacock Award and was twice nominated for the Giller Prize.

Paul Quarrington died of cancer yesterday at the age of 56. We wanted to end the program this week with some reflections on his life and legacy from his friend, Dave Bidini, a fellow musician and writer.


Listen to Part Three:

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