Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs
Center for Human Rights and Humanitarian Studies (CHRHS)

Reflections on the Root Causes of Humanitarian Crises

Wednesday, March 31, 2021

12:00pm – 1:00pm

Watch on Watson's YouTube channel.  

How can aid workers address the big picture problems facing humanity? Sarah Petrin, author of Bring Rain: Helping Humanity in Crisis, will share her reflections on what can be done to address the root causes of humanitarian crises, based on her 20 years of work in the field. She will unpack the economic, social, and political factors that drive conflict and instability, and offer suggestions for how emergency relief can contribute to long-term stability. 

Human Rights and Humanitarianism in Action

Sarah Petrin is a humanitarian and educator from Maine. Born in an African village during a season of drought, Sarah has helped refugees since she was 15 years old. From responding to an active shooter in the Capitol of Washington, DC to being held hostage by a warlord in the Sahara Desert, she has borne witness to the radical acts of ordinary heroism that lead to global change. She has worked in more than 20 countries with the United Nations and the Red Cross and is the founder of Protect the People. She teaches on the Protection of Civilians and Human Security at the U.S. Army Peacekeeping and Stability Operations Institute. Sarah has a Master’s degree from the Refugee Studies Centre at Oxford University and a B.A. in International Relations, African Studies, and French from Gordon College.