Natalie Gumede: we should reach out to refugees

Natalie Gumede – Celebrity guest blogger

She was the TV award-winning villain we loved to hate as Kirsty in Coronation Street, wowed us with her nimble moves on Strictly Come Dancing, and she's blowing our socks off as the physically and mentally tough Bella in Jekyll and Hyde.

We’re big fans of the way Natalie Gumede has made a name for herself playing strong, complex female characters on our TV screens. Now we love Natalie even more, because she’s supporting our Christmas appeal to help protect homeless children all over the world. In this exclusive interview Natalie tells us about her own childhood hopes and dreams, reveals some pet (social media) hates and worries, drops some hints about her future plans and talks movingly about the human rights crisis that’s unfolding on Europe’s shores.


How child sponsorship helps women cope with HIV in Uganda

Saida Bogere – Uganda Child Sponsorship Manager

The region in which Kumi is situated has one of the highest rates of HIV and AIDS in Uganda. Despite this, the communities here have a limited understanding about the virus and how it’s transferred, so people who are living with HIV face heavy stigmatisation – especially women, making it even harder for them to survive and support their children. I recently met a lady called Kasfer, who is 28 years old and lives in Kumi with her husband, Felix, and their two daughters. Both Kasfer and Felix are HIV positive. Read how ActionAid child sponsorship has helped them cope and manage to keep their daughters in school.


Top bloggers throw a Faux Ho Ho

Penny Alexander – Celebrity guest blogger

We’re thrilled that award-winning blogger Penny Alexander hosted an incredible Faux Ho Ho last week, inviting lots of fellow bloggers round to her home in Nottingham to share some delicious food, drink and Christmas spirit. Just try to get to the bottom of her blog post without craving a mince pie….


This week world leaders have been meeting in Paris to make crucial decisions on climate change. ActionAid is there to make sure the UK government stands up for the most vulnerable women and children. Thanks to our supporters taking action and backing our campaigning over the last few weeks, the pressure is on.


Can you imagine breastfeeding on a pile of rubbish, surrounded by hundreds of men you’ve never met? Or trying to keep your baby clean, when you only have dirty nappies and no clean water? These are experiences faced daily by refugee mothers arriving on the Greek island of Lesvos, where ActionAid is running special mother and baby centres.


ActionAid’s new policy report 'Diversify and Conquer' discusses what Bangladesh’s government needs to do to create decent jobs for the country’s workers so they have better employment alternatives to jobs in garment factories, where they are poorly paid and badly treated. Opening this path to a brighter future requires transforming the economy by investing in manufacturing sectors that bring in more money for the country, like engineering and electronics.