Here goes my second entry – and your second glimpse into what I’m thinking and experiencing as I near departure.
EWB is intense, which is great. I‘m not sure if I’ve ever learned so much in a one month before?
They keep teaching us big complex things such as - facilitation methods, various frameworks, concepts, tools… and intermingled among them all are words such as; approach, leverage, gender, culture, capital, transformative change, humility…all of which I am now able to speak at great lengths about what they mean and how they relate to the work I’ll be doing for the next year.
Meanwhile, I haven’t been doing this alone. Every step of the way there are 11 other people beside me, we eat together, walk together, train together and all of us live in the same 3 bedroom house in downtown
The team walking through a winter wonderland.
I also had the chance to get-out-of-town for a weekend. I went to the Hillside-Inside music festival in
So am I ready to go?
Surprisingly, I’d say yes. Maybe I'm a bit too comfortable with the idea? I sorta feel like I’m in the Truman Show and now it’s my turn to head off into the unknown world that I’ve only seen or read about. I want to see it with my own eyes, to hear the laughter of the children, to smell the forest and…well I guess its rainy season in
My checklist is almost done - I have a haircut, my Malaria meds, pictures of family and girlfriend, a journal, a camera and a ticket to fly. For sure I’m forgetting something.
It’s just hair.
(this paragraph is mostly for me)
We’ve been told to write down 10 things we love to do so that two months from now, when our ‘honeymoon’ phase is over and the culture shock hits, we can look back and see which things we are not doing. My ten things include – music, taking leisurely walks, reading, seeing the sun rise, seeing the moon rise, listening to stories, riding my bike, watching movies, seeing live music and taking pictures. I also enjoy seeing the northern lights, skating outside, hearing from Laure-Eloise and speaking to my mom…all of which I anticipate to be more difficult in a weeks time.
(this paragraph is for all of you that are interested in development)
What has been surprising so far?
- If you want to promote good hygiene practices, maybe it’s possible that Unilever (a multi-national food and soap company) is better positioned than anyone else to do this?
- Most things are common sense, however, there is a big difference between the theory of common sense and the application. (hence the 1 month of training req’d)
- The power of questioning – this is an extremely effective way to learn and to help others learn.
- The development sector is broken! Flat out. Aid money isn’t working and EWB is trying to improve it. The key issue here is accountability. Ask yourself - whose head rolls when a project fails overseas? How can feedback systems be used to improve this?
So it’s been a big month to say the least. My Grandpa passed away in January, which is tough, but I was able to say a proper goodbye before I left
To prevent rambling, I'm going to sign off in hopes that you will check out my next update which is sure to be from the capital city of
It'll be strange to leave