Okay, so I haven’t updated this blog in awhile; and it’s not because I haven’t had spectacular things happen to me. It’s because I’m a bit busy and lazy. So here’s a quick recap:
- In the dead of winter (Feb 2011), I changed jobs. It was an exciting and much needed change and I met some great people and learned a lot because of it (I am no longer at this position).
- In the summer, I travelled to London for an amazing Indian wedding with people I’d consider family. I went to Paris to explore and hang out with a girl-friend. I fell in love with Copenhagen and their bike lanes while visiting a family-friend studying there.
- In the fall, I got to help plan and execute the TEDxToronto After Party. I met some inspiring artists and performers and had a lot of fun doing it.
- Around the end of 2011, I got together with two brilliant girl-friends and launched helloberry bracelets. Through the stresses of brainstorming, set-up, long meetings, and many late nights, we always had fun. I never thought I could do anything entrepreneurial, but I can’t say that any more. We’ve been well-received and our fans are fan-tastic! (see what I did there?)
I am moving to Guyana.
I will be there starting on February 9, 2012 for a one year placement in Shulinab, Guyana (located about 1-2 hours south of Lethem in the Interior) as a Women’s Enterprise Development Advisor. I applied to Cuso International and was selected by them along with VSO Guyana to work with the South Central People Development Association (SCPDA) .
I will be dedicated to working with and among various communities in the Rupununi region to assist with finance, accounting, and a bit of marketing and product development. I will mostly be working with Amerindian women who have enterprises in agriculture and craft-making. Although it seems that I will be teaching them business skills, I know I will learn lots from them as well.
A big question is
The simple answer: Why not?
The detailed explanation: I’ve always been an advocate of volunteering. I’ve always wanted to work for a non-profit organization; volunteering with
one is the first step to working for one.
Many of you know that I love to travel. My travel has always been short-term because of time constraints. Now that I have the opportunity and freedom to do something long-term, I don’t want to just walk about the earth and see
things. I want to do
things – meaningful things.
And that’s why I’m doing this.
Now to answer the “Where exactly…?” questions, here’s a map to help you visualize where I’ll be located (click to enlarge):
By clicking that map I bet some of you just learned that Guyana isn’t an island (although it’s associated with the West Indies which include island nations), and that it’s situated in South America, above Brazil and to the east of Venezuela.
Guyana was colonized by the Brits (so they speak English). To the east, there is Suriname (colonized by the Dutch) and French Guiana (colonized by the French). These three countries are the only ones in South America that don’t speak either Spanish or Portuguese as first languages.
Okay, that’s enough geography and history for now.
Here’s where I ask you to support me and Cuso International.
Cuso International sends volunteers abroad to work on collaborative development projects in Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean. They are one of North America’s largest international development non-profits that works through volunteers like me.
Here’s the great thing about donating – every dollar you donate is multiplied by the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) to help fund Cuso International’s efforts to support global development, environmental sustainability and social justice.
Thank you in advance for your donations; without your generosity, Cuso International wouldn’t be able to send volunteers overseas to pass on their knowledge and expertise.