Development can wear many different hats. From immediate relief, to long term education...one aspect that is consistent is the hope to facilitate positive and sustainable change among communities in need. Perhaps the most important thing to understand before launching any development campaign is the issue. Although seemingly obvious, misdiagnosing the problem will undermine the projects success from day one. Therefore, as outsiders, we should seek to empower and utilize existing capacities and then teach the practical skills to curb the poverty cycle.
At the onset of the year, I was keen to explore development through education, and ideally work with an organizations like the Institute of International Education that subsidizes projects to bring quality education to the most dire corners of the world. All too often women and girls are left as the collateral damage of failed education systems and so began my curiosity in development byway of advocacy.
Feeling heavy and rather bogged down by the worlds laundry list of social injustices, I looked for guidance among other liked minded young women. Dr. Samantha Nutt's book 'Damned Nations', chronicles two decades of her work delivering aid and her vision for Canada as a leader in future peacekeeping pursuits. Enthralled by her personal testimonials, it has never been more clear to me how important an accurate needs assessment and the establishment of measurable and achievable goals are. For a further commentary, listen to her interview with the CBC.
"Be the change you want to see in the world." - Gandhi