Sara Amina Adem '12 recently completed a unique extra assignment when she spoke before the Special Political and Decolonization Committee of the United Nations in New York.
Adem, a junior International Studies Major, gave her testimony to the UN committee about her experience living in Algeria, her friendship with a Sahrawi refugee, and the conflict and issues of self-determination for the Sahrawi people of Western Sahara.
Earlham's principles of peace, justice and coexistence helped nurture Adem's interest in this issue. These principles have helped her "to envision a better world," Adem said in a prepared statement.
Adem's testimony describes how the Sahrawi live in refugee camps where access to basic supplies is provided by humanitarian organizations, yet conditions for the people there are worse in terms of the abuse of human rights. Adem asked the committee if the U.N. will continue to only provide humanitarian aid, or will the U.N. "scale-up to address the roots of why these people are displaced?"
Adem hopes to return and testify again before the committee. She also plans to visit a refugee camp in Algeria this summer. "I now feel more attached to this conflict and want to do more," Adem says.