When news broke last month that the so-called "BRICS" nations - Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa - had agreed to form their own development bank, some analysts feared the new body would be little more than a political bloc. But others are welcoming the plan, saying the world needs help when it comes to development finance. VOA'S Laurel Bowman has that story.
Jeremiah Heaton traveled from his Virginia home to an "unclaimed" piece of land between Egypt and Sudan, planted a flag there and named it the Kingdom of North Sudan. And he insists that his young daughter Emily is now a princess. VOA's Laurel Bowman has more.
President Barack Obama's Young African Leadership Initiative has brought hundreds of young Africans to the United States for a six-week program aimed at building their knowledge and skills in fields such as public administration and business. Out of the 50,000 young Africans who applied for the program, just one percent was accepted. VOA's Laurel Bowman caught up with some of those who made the cut and has this report.
For many people, eyeglasses are a necessary part of their wardrobe, but optician June Mines considers them art, as well. As VOA's Laurel Bowman reports, she considers her customer's face as her canvas.
Many migrants send small amounts of money - called "remittances" - home to friends and family members. But with 200 million international migrants out there, those small sums add up quickly. In 2013, migrants around the world sent back $400 billion, far outweighing official aid to many countries and sometimes providing the largest source of foreign exchange. This has economists wondering - can remittances boost not just a receiving family's budget but their country's…