Jason Beaubien

Jason Beaubien is NPR's Global Health and Development Correspondent on the Science Desk.

In this role, he reports on a range of issues across the world. He's covered the plight of Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh, mass cataract surgeries in Ethiopia, abortion in El Salvador, poisonous gold mines in Nigeria, drug-resistant malaria in Myanmar and tuberculosis in Tajikistan. He was part of a team of reporters at NPR that won a Peabody Award in 2015 for their extensive coverage of the West Africa Ebola outbreak. His current beat also examines development issues including why Niger has the highest birth rate in the world, can private schools serve some of the poorest kids on the planet and the links between obesity and economic growth.

Prior to becoming the Global Health and Development Correspondent in 2012, Beaubien spent four years based in Mexico City covering Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean. In that role, Beaubien filed stories on politics in Cuba, the 2010 Haitian earthquake, the FMLN victory in El Salvador, the world's richest man and Mexico's brutal drug war.

For his first multi-part series as the Mexico City correspondent, Beaubien drove the length of the U.S./Mexico border making a point to touch his toes in both oceans. The stories chronicled the economic, social and political changes along the violent frontier.

In 2002, Beaubien joined NPR after volunteering to cover a coup attempt in the Ivory Coast. Over the next four years, Beaubien worked as a foreign correspondent in sub-Saharan Africa, visiting 27 countries on the continent. His reporting ranged from poverty on the world's poorest continent, the HIV in the epicenter of the epidemic, and the all-night a cappella contests in South Africa, to Afro-pop stars in Nigeria and a trial of white mercenaries in Equatorial Guinea.

During this time, he covered the famines and wars of Africa, as well as inspiring preachers and Nobel laureates. Beaubien was one of the first journalists to report on the huge exodus of people out of Sudan's Darfur region into Chad, as villagers fled some of the initial attacks by the Janjawid. He reported extensively on the steady deterioration of Zimbabwe and still has a collection of worthless Zimbabwean currency.

In 2006, Beaubien was awarded a Knight-Wallace fellowship at the University of Michigan to study the relationship between the developed and the developing world.

Beaubien grew up in Maine, started his radio career as an intern at NPR Member Station KQED in San Francisco and worked at WBUR in Boston before joining NPR.

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In Scotland today, newspaper headlines shouted freedom. But read the small print. Another read, don't cry freedom. The headlines are a poke at Scotland's neighbor to the south. England declared so-called Freedom Day and lifted almost all COVID restrictions a few weeks ago. Scotland has charted a more cautious course. Scotland's first minister, Nicola Sturgeon, says most COVID restrictions will be relaxed next Monday.

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In the wake of one of the most devastating moments in Haiti's arduous history, there has been a bright spot.

One week after Haiti's president was assassinated, the country's first shipment of COVID-19 vaccines finally arrived.

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti — The assassination of Haitian President Jovenel Moïse in his heavily guarded private residence on July 7 shocked the nation. But it happened at a time when violence is surging in the country. Many Haitians say that killings, kidnappings and random shootings are at levels they've never seen before.

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David Moinina Sengeh is not your typical education minister. The 34-year-old with a Ph.D. from MIT not only oversees the public schools in Sierra Leone, he's also the nation's chief innovation officer. And that's in addition to being a recording artist, a clothing designer and an inventor.

FREETOWN, Sierra Leone — President Biden this month announced plans to ship a half a billion doses of the Pfizer vaccine to the 100 lowest income countries in the world. That would include Sierra Leone and many other sub-Saharan African nations.

Hospital wards across Uganda are filling with COVID-19 patients as the country faces an aggressive surge in cases. One of the biggest issues have: a serious shortage of oxygen.

Over the last month, the number of daily reported infections has increased tenfold, showing no signs of letting up. Cases have jumped from less than 100 a day in mid-May to 1,584 on June 18. "ICU bed capacity is now full, almost at 100%," says Willy Tabu, a physician based in Kampala who helps coordinate Mercy Corps response to the pandemic.

Sahr Tarawaly is proud to be the breadwinner for his family. Each day the 14- year-old fetches water for several of his neighbors. He collects firewood to sell by the side of the road. He goes around to construction sites and asks for work sweeping and cleaning up debris. When fishing boats come in, he helps them draw in their nets.

"I used to like mathematics," the round-faced teenager says. But that was in the past. "Now I go down to the beach to fish, to have fish to eat."

Sahr dropped out of school two years when he was 12.

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FREETOWN, Sierra Leonoe — Gunmen opened fire at 2 a.m., killing more than 160 people in the West African nation of Burkina Faso over the weekend, according to local officials.

The assault on the village of Solhan on Saturday is the latest incident in a region reeling from a recent coup and plagued by instability. Human rights groups say it was the worst attack on civilians in the region in years.

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A massacre over the weekend left more than 130 people dead in Burkina Faso.

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