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Upcoming Events

    • Wednesday, October 11, 2023
    • 6:00 PM - 7:00 PM
    • Salon Rooms, Hospitality Center, Southern New Hampshire University, 2500 North River Road Manchester, NH 03106

    T. William & Patricia Ayers Global Tipping Points

    Immigration Policy & the Stories Behind it:


    October 11th, 2023

    6:00 - 7:00 pm

    Salon Rooms, Hospitality Center, SNHU

    2500 North River Road Manchester, NH 03106

    Online at

    "Refugees are mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, children, with the same hopes and ambitions as us—except that a twist of fate has bound their lives to a global refugee crisis on an unprecedented scale." - Khaled Hosseini, author of "The Kite Runner"

    Against a backdrop of global displacement, this event offers audience members the opportunity to hear expert insight and a personal narrative of the refugee experience, offering a rare insight into the challenges they've overcome, the dreams they continue to pursue, and the realities that are faced in the immigration process. By delving into the intricate tapestry of resilience that threads through the lives of refugees, we seek to foster understanding and meaningful conversations that transcend borders.

    Join the World Affairs Council with the NH Fulbright Association, with our speaker Jeffrey Thielman, President and CEO of the International Institute of New England for an event on discussing U.S refugee policy and first-hand accounts of what it means to be a refugee in the United States.

    This is part two of three in our Fall T. William & Patricia Ayers Global Tipping Points Series - ""Immigration Policy & the Stories Behind it"" where we unravel the complex interplay between policies and the lived experiences of migrants, refugees, and asylum seekers, shedding light on the challenges they face and the resilience they embody. From the corridors of power to the journeys of those seeking a new home, this event series uncovers the inspiring stories that remind us of the shared humanity that binds us all, transcending borders and shaping the discourse of our time."

    About the Speaker

    Since becoming the President and CEO of the International Institute of New England in 2015, Jeff Thielman has been a leader in the effort to preserve the U.S. refugee resettlement program and to protect the rights of immigrants in New England. Under his direction, IINE has expanded services to more refugees and immigrants, reinstated its legal services program, and expanded career services to more cities and towns in the region.

    Prior to joining IINE, he co-founded the national Cristo Rey Network and spent nearly two decades creating schools that today serve 13,000 low income and immigrant students in 24 U.S. states and boast of more than 21,000 graduates. Jeff oversaw the start-up of the first 24 Cristo Rey schools and served as President of Cristo Rey Boston High School.

    Early in his professional career, Jeff was a trial attorney in Boston and worked in the financial services industry. Between college and law school, he served as a Jesuit International Volunteer in Tacna, Peru, where he was a teacher and founder of a program for street children called the Center for the Working Child, which has been replicated in several cities in Peru. He is co-author of Volunteer: With the Poor in Peru, holds undergraduate and law degrees from Boston College, and is fluent in Spanish.

    Jeff lives with his wife and three children in Arlington, Massachusetts, where he serves on the town’s School Committee.

    In Partnership with:

    • Tuesday, October 24, 2023
    • 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM
    • Portsmouth Public Library,

    Crossroads Film Series:

    The Great Green Wall

    October 24th, 2023

    6:00pm - 8:00pm

    Portsmouth Public Library

    175 Parrott Ave, Portsmouth, NH 03801

    Join us for a captivating documentary screening of The Great Green Wall (2019), featuring Inna Modja's journey through the Sahel region of Africa, as she travels across the continent creating a musical album inspired by the Great Green Wall. Launched in 2007 by the African Union, the Great Green Wall is an ambitious effort to span almost 5,000 miles from Senegal to Djibouti with a 9 mile deep wall of trees. If completed, this would constitute the largest living structure on the planet and would help slow the desertification of the Sahel and Sahara. 

    "By 2050 there will be over 1 billion people (in Africa) under the age of 25," says Inna. "By restoring the land, can we create an African dream?"

    A winner of 6 international film festival awards, this documentary shares the stories of the people living on the front lines of climate change and how they are fighting back. Inna Modja aims to raise awareness of this existential crisis for the people of these 22 countries, through her music and this film. 

    At the conclusion of the film, the audience will break into facilitated small group conversations lead by leaders of Education for All Children, Rain for the Sahel and Sahara, the League of Conservation Voters, and the World Affairs Council of New Hampshire. Each group will focus on different areas of the film and will spark lasting community conversations.

    Sponsored By:

    Steve and Karin Barndollar

    Davis and Sukey Farmer

    Susan and Phil von Hemert

    Paul Barry

    Promotional Partner:

    Discussion Group Leaders:

    The Sahel Region Discussion Group

    Katherine Kolios - Katherine’s experience spans education, sexual and reproductive health, nutrition, and malaria prevention. She joined RAIN in 2017 having lived, worked, and studied in Francophone communities throughout Africa, South America, and Europe. Katherine has experience working in the field and in headquarters of organizations large and small.

    Storytelling Discussion Group - 

    Matt Gianino - Matt has worked with nonprofits in NH for over 20 years and currently serves as the Executive Director of EFAC (Education For All Children). Matt's career has been immersed in implementing strategies that allow organizations to do their best work with an emphasis on community engagement, data-driven decision-making, and maximizing impact. He particularly appreciates how strategic planning, nurturing relationships, and strengthening brand can be transformative for organizations addressing social justice issues. 

    Global Cooperation to Solve Issues Discussion Group- 

    Tim Horgan - Tim started his career with the World Affairs Council of New Hampshire in November of 2009 as an AmeriCorps member. During his year of service, he took on the international visitor exchange programs and was able to grow the grant to a point where the Council could hire him full time. For the next eight years, Tim continued to run, grow, and expand the quality and breadth of these exchanges, peaking at over 350 visitors hosted in one year. In 2018, Tim took over the role of executive director of the World Affairs Council of New Hampshire. Under his leadership, the Council has continued its growth and professionalization of its efforts. He successfully led the organization through the pandemic, pioneering virtual programming and implementing new initiatives. 

    • Tuesday, November 28, 2023
    • 5:30 PM - 7:30 PM
    • Banquet Center, SNHU Dining Hall, 2500 N. River Road, Manchester, NH 03106

    2023 Global Business Summit

    November 28th, 2023

    5:30pm to 7:30pm

    Banquet Hall, Southern New Hampshire University

    2500 N. River Road Manchester, NH 03106

    In an increasingly interconnected world, WACNH's Global Business Summit  serves as a pivotal platform for fostering essential relationships between international businesses and diplomatic missions. At this dynamic gathering, participants from diverse industries have the unique opportunity to engage in meaningful dialogue with consulates representing various nations. Throughout the event, consulates will be tabling, providing the opportunity where attendees can engage with diplomatic representatives and explore avenues for international collaboration.

    With a focus on economic diplomacy, the event offers a unique opportunity for businesses to collaborate with consulates, enabling them to navigate international markets, resolve regulatory challenges, and unlock new pathways of growth. Beyond structured sessions, the event encourages open networking, allowing attendees to stroll through the consulate tables, strike up conversations, and build connections that transcend borders. Through a brief presentation with selected Consuls and this open networking format, participants can gain valuable insights into global business trends and exchange ideas with diplomatic representatives.

    Event Schedule

    5:30 pm - Reception Doors Open

    7:30 pm - Event Closes




    Consulate General of Canada in Boston

    Consulate General of Mexico in Boston

*We encourage advance registration for all of our programs. For events with a ticket price, online payments can be made via our website. If you prefer to register or pay over the phone, please contact our office: 603.314.7970

2500 N. River Road - Manchester - NH - 03106 - (603) 314-7970

WACNH is an independent, non-profit, educational organization located on the campus of Southern New Hampshire University. © 2010-2021


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