Jens Erik Gould has been a correspondent at Bloomberg News, covering Mexico’s economy and drug war. He has also reported for TIME Magazine from Los Angeles and from Caracas, Venezuela for The New York Times, National Public Radio and Platts. The beats Jens Gould has covered have ranged from politics to the economy, from sports to music. He has reported from Mexico, Venezuela, Colombia, Vietnam, Honduras, the U.S. and other countries.
Originally from Los Angeles, Jens Erik Gould is also creator, producer and host of the documentary series Bravery Tapes, which tells stories of human struggle and courage. He graduated with Honors from the University of Michigan, has earned a Fulbright scholarship and has received two Pulitzer Center grants for reporting.
On a recent morning in a Ho Chi Minh City intensive-care unit, Cao Thi My Hanh sat crying and clutching her 5-month-old granddaughter, Nguyen Dang Thanh Phuong. More than a month earlier she had noticed the baby coughing and struggling to breathe.
Two years ago a colleague and I were awarded a grant for a reporting project on the subject of HIV prevention. We chose our location and pitched the story, and soon two major media outlets were on board to publish our work. One year later we were awarded a subsequent grant to conduct a reporting project on tuberculosis.
The Afro-Caribbean people known as the Garifuna have a rich tradition of music, dance and storytelling much like their forebears. They also have another parallel to Africa: a severe HIV and AIDS epidemic. The Garifuna are using their culture as a weapon to fight the spread of the virus.
In a poor neighborhood along the banks of the Saigon River, Tran Ngoc Tam and his wife sat inside a one-room dwelling so tiny it could barely fit a bed. Tam spoke intermittently between frequent bouts of coughing and grimacing, products of his painful battle with tuberculosis.
Photographs by David Rochkind. HO CHI MINH CITY, Vietnam - On a recent morning in an intensive care unit, Cao Thi My Hanh sat clutching her 5-month-old granddaughter. Hanh had tears in her eyes and was fearful the tiny baby might not survive her battle with tuberculosis.
HO CHI MINH CITY, Vietnam-Motorcycles are everywhere on the streets, alleys and sidewalks of Ho Chi Minh City, and the entryway to this district health center is no different. Every morning, patients arrive here on bikes to wait for their daily dose of medicine.
In the village of Corozal in Honduras, men ready boats for fishing excursions and boys play soccer on a beach lined with thatched huts. On a sandy lot next to the town's main street, two teenage boys begin playing drums while women sing.
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The city of Anaheim is best known as the home of the Angels baseball team, the Ducks professional hockey team and Disneyland, the "happiest place on Earth." But on Tuesday, only four miles away from Mickey, Minnie and Peter Pan, hundreds of angry protesters swarmed the streets of downtown holding signs that read "Stop Killer Cops" and "They Smell like Pigs."
This week, Linda Garibay's monthly welfare check will drop by $43. The unemployed mother of two will struggle to afford clothes, soap and shampoo. She'll be squeezing by on an income of $490 per month, all of which comes from welfare, and spending it all on shared rent for her sister's apartment and diapers and clothes for her kids.
On a sunny February morning at the Los Angeles Athletic Club, Jerry Brown's cup of black coffee was getting cold. When a concerned waitress in the club restaurant poured him a fresh cup and offered to clear the original one, the governor of California declined. "That's alright.
As we kayaked, red-tailed hawks circled above us looking for food and snowy egrets played along the banks. A cormorant dived into the water next to me and leaped back to the surface just inches in front of my kayak.
One would think that Karla Zapata, an undocumented student from Guatemala, would be ecstatic over the prospect of receiving her first ever work permit. Well, she is. But she's also wary.
Antonio Montejano was born and raised in Los Angeles. He lives in an apartment building in a middle-class area sandwiched between Beverly Hills, the L.A. Country Club and UCLA. He is a law-abiding citizen who labors as a construction worker and comes home to a wife and four kids.
While these subjects' courage is immediately apparent, I've come to realize as I produce these Tapes that bravery is actually all around us in everyday life. It's in our schools, in our offices, on our roads.
On a hot September day in Southern California, a convicted felon clad in a heavy helmet and scuba gear dives to the bottom of a deep-water tank. He spends several minutes down there, removing bolts from large metal pipes, and communicating his progress through a radio to a dive tender and fellow inmates of the ...
New York Times
And these days, he is dangling Venezuela's significant reserves as an incentive as he asks his neighbors for a long-term natural gas commitment.
Venezuelan players will have a chance to prove they are on par with the Dominicans when the two teams meet in the first round of the World Baseball Classic on Tuesday in Orlando, Fla. "This is the best moment to let the world know about Venezuela," Detroit Tigers shortstop Carlos Guillen said during the Caribbean Series.
Michael Gavin, chief Latin American economist at UBS Warburg in Stamford, Conn., said, "They're hollowing out the economy and setting Venezuela up for a real setback if oil prices ever return to more historically normal levels."
Opinion polls released in the last week have found Mr. Chávez's proposals tied or trailing the opposition position among likely voters, after months of polls showing it likely to pass. In recent weeks, students have rallied in Caracas to protest the changes, and some of those demonstrations have turned violent.
Still, the banks may be thriving too much for the government's liking. Chávez warned last month that the state could take over the sector if it did not offer low-cost financing to domestic industries. Among the institutions that would be affected by such a move are Citigroup, which is based in the United States, and the Spanish banks Santander and BBVA, which control lucrative outlets here.
Cars, then, are often the purchase of choice and, because of that, they do not depreciate here as they do in the United States and in Latin America's other big car markets. Also, it does not hurt that government subsidies and price controls lock gasoline prices at 12 cents a gallon.
There are signs that Venezuela has taken the case seriously. Its chief lawyer in the case, Esther Bigott de Loaiza, has close ties to top government officials. But she was ousted late last year after she was named in a lawsuit, now dismissed, that said Venezuela had paid her $18 million in the case.
Chávez seeks to strip the central bank formally of its autonomy, giving him the power to dictate monetary policy and the spending of excess foreign reserves. Another measure would eliminate an already neglected rainy-day fund. Polls released in the past week have found support for Chávez's proposal tied or trailing opposition among likely voters, after months of surveys showing it was likely to pass.
*Jens Erik Gould* reports on a tragedy that helped change the law on abortion in Colombia. Martha Solay spent Mother's Day in pain, knowing her life would soon be over. As her eldest daughter Yenny injected her with painkillers, she coiled into a fetal position, cupped her face in her hands and screamed.
It isn't easy for Juan Venegas to support his wife and three children with the money he earns installing fiberglass at a construction company in Riverside, California. He's lucky to have a job at all; the industry here is still reeling from the housing crisis.
If it weren't for the modern-day logos on some of the men's T-shirts, a snapshot of the Colombian village of La Balsa could be easily mistaken for a print taken a century ago. Rickety wooden homes that evoke images of an old Deep South backwater line the town's avenue -- which is no more than a grassy pathway.