Internationally recognized Somali humanitarians are next Chubb Fellows

Noted humanitarian Dr. Hawa Abdi Diblaawe will visit the campus on Tuesday, April 18 under the auspices of the Chubb Fellowship. She will be joined by her daughter, Dr. Deqo Mohamed, who was a fall 2016 Yale Greenberg World Fellow.

Abdi and Mohamed will give the Chubb Lecture at 4:30 p.m. in the auditorium of Sheffield-Sterling-Strathcona Hall, 1 Prospect St. The talk is free and open to the public.

Born in Mogadishu, Somalia, Abdi studied medicine in Kiev in the former Soviet Union. She became a doctor and one of her country’s first gynecologists. Following the start of the outbreak of civil war in Somalia in 1991, Abdi ministered to many coming to the clinic seeking medical aid, food, clean water, and shelter. With the assistance of her two daughters, Dr. Deqo Mohamed and Dr. Amina Mohamed, Abdi opened up her family’s land to house displaced persons, the majority being women, children, and the elderly. Renamed Hawa Abdi Village, the site is now home to over 90,000 people who have access to a 400-bed hospital providing vaccinations and pediatric and maternal care. The village is also home to the Waqaf-Dhiblawe Primary School run by Deqo Mohamed that aims to maintain an even gender ratio, ensuring schooling for young girls. The village has also pioneered sustainable agriculture solutions to confront the country’s water and food security crisis.

A 2012 Nobel Prize nominee, Abdi has been recognized in the United States and internationally for her humanitarian work. In 2014, she was honored with the Franklin D. Roosevelt Four Freedoms from Want Award. In 2010, Glamour placed Abdi and her daughters on the year’s list of “Women of the Year.” In 2013, Abdi published her autobiography, titled “Keeping Hope Alive,” which received critical acclaim.

The Chubb Fellowship was founded with a gift from Yale alumnus Hendon Chubb, and since 1949 has been one of Yale’s most prestigious honors conferred on visiting speakers. The head of college of Timothy Dwight College, currently Mary Lui, administers the fellowship, which is devoted to encouraging interest in public service. Chubb Fellows spend their time at Yale in close, informal contact with students and make an appearance open to the public. Former Chubb Fellows include Presidents George H.W. Bush, Ronald Reagan, Jimmy Carter, and Harry Truman; authors Wendell Berry and Toni Morrison; actors Morgan Freeman and Shah Rukh Khan; world leaders Aung San Suu Kyi and Ellen Johnson Sirleaf; journalist Nicholas Kristoff; musician Paul Simon; and many other nationally and internationally prominent citizens and leaders.