Akureyri, Iceland, September 2014 (tribute to Lilja, who loved her country: Iceland)
Lilja Dora Kolbeinsdóttir was my friend. She was Icelandic. We studied together in Denmark, and then we worked in Angola. Since then, we have kept in touch and followed on each other's steps. Lilja mainly worked in southern part of Africa - in Mozambique, Malawi and also Uganda. Two years ago, she got cancer. She started getting better after the initial treatment, but then the cancer spread. 3 days ago, Lilja passed away.
Lilja was roughly same age as me. She was a wonderful friend to me, but also to countless other people. I admired Lilja for her work towards empowerment the most disadvantaged people on earth. She believed that education of children, especially girls was a key to ending poverty. So she worked without ever getting tired, trying to advance on her belief and goal. Lilja was an amazing human right's activist, advocating for refugees, LGBTI+ communities, religion minorities… She was a walking angel on this earth.
To me, she was also a friend, who could challenge me, discuss with me. We made fun together, we dreamt together.
Today Lilja is gone. I just hope that you Rest In Peace. Please wait for us, and me; somewhere there, so that we can carry on being friends. I will miss you Lilja. So long, see you soon!
Honduras, along with a number of other countries in Central America and the Caribbean region has been hit by a devastating hurricane called Eta.
The winds and the rains have devastated communities in the region, leaving millions affected: dead, displaced with destroyed houses and crops. All happens during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemics, which complicates the situation and the response greatly.
In order to respond to the humanitarian needs, together with my colleagues, we are planning a fact finding emergency mission to Honduras, Guatemala and Nicaragua (for now, later other countries may be included), so that we can support the humanitarian partners in their relief operations.
I am leaving Panama City for Tegucigalpa on Saturday and should stay in Honduras for around two weeks.
As usual, watch this space for additional updates!