Global Exchange’s work would not be possible without the generosity of our supporters.  Sharing their stories with you gives us an opportunity to say thank you, and to introduce members of the Global Exchange Community.  Enjoy the first ever Global Exchange Donor Profile.

Iara Lee was on board the ship boarded by Israeli soldiers during the Gaza Freedom Flotilla in May of 2010.  The Israeli attack on the Gaza Flotilla left nine peace activists dead, and generated outrage in the international community.  Iara Lee didn’t respond with despair, however, but with defiance and hope.

Her footage from the attack provides one of the few alternative viewpoints for what happened.  She has subsequently made every effort to get out the truth about the events of the early morning of May 31st, to show the world the reality of what’s at stake in Gaza.  See videos at:

We are sharing her story with you because we are deeply concerned for the plight of the Palestinians, and for peace activists, and also because Iara is a friend of Global Exchange.

She directed the documentaries Synthetic Pleasures (1995) and Modulations (1998).  The scope of her work has expanded since then, moving beyond arts & technology themed pieces to focus more on arts & culture for human rights.

A decade ago, when Iara first spoke with GX co-founders Kirsten Moller and Kevin Danaher, her approach was straightforward.  Tell me about human rights, she said.  So we did.  We shared our analysis of what makes the world tick, and our vision for what needs to be done to make real changes.  Iara saw a connection between her ideas and ours.

Following the United States invasion of Afghanistan in 2002, we worked together to aid Afghan victims.   When the Bush White House announced plans for the invasion of Iraq, Iara came on board to support our organizing work against the Iraq war.  In 2004, we joined hands in helping promote democracy in Burma.  Her organization,, continues to confront war/conflicts and promote peace with justice through arts and culture.

And when it’s time to buy gifts for the family, she shops as Global Exchange stores.  She has also participated in GX Reality Tours to learn about the plight of those in the Global South.

Iara’s courage, perseverance, and integrity are an inspiration to all of us at Global Exchange.  Here’s to another decade working together for peace, justice, and sustainability.