The Start of the Journey

7 Jul

Well, I have officially set up my blog (no thanks to my computer skills, but to my friend Sarah Mitus, who is the social media guru) for when I will be gone in Nicaragua and to chronicle my time before I leave.  I am hoping that this will serve as a way for my family and friends to know about my Jesuit Volunteer Corps (JVC) journey and my experience serving in Nicaragua.

That being said, I would like to take the opportunity to set the scene of where I am at currently.  This past May, which now seems like ages ago, I graduated from Villanova University in Pennsylvania and obtained Bachelor of Arts degrees in Sociology and Gender & Women’s studies with a Concentration in Peace & Justice studies and Minor in Spanish.

Although those areas of study may seem pretty random to some, for me, they have been vital stepping stones for accumulating knowledge of our current society’s systematic inequality (at the intersections of race, class, and gender) and concrete solutions for a more just world.  Therefore, because of my interest in International Development with a focus on gender inequality, my coursework has provided me the opportunity to expand my understanding of the world.  

The first step in my journey to gain greater understanding of inequality has been to accept my admittance to the Jesuit Volunteer Corps to serve in Ciudad Sandino, Nicaragua for two years.  I will be living  with 4 other Jesuit Volunteers (JVs) guided by the values of Community, Social Justice, Spirituality, and Simple Living, while working at Pajarito Azul, a residence home for people who are mentally and physically disabled, as the program Activities and Therapy Coordinator.  However, I will not be leaving on this journey until early December…

This brings me to my next step before I leave for Nicaragua…Washington, D.C.!!  I am currently interning at the Center of Concern, a research analysis non-profit, in their Global Women’s Project for the summer. This internship has been a great experience, which has enabled me to understand more about non-profit life, international development, and research on public policy and women’s issues.  Much of my work has focused on understanding the current “care crisis.”  Now, many of you might be wondering what this is, but I’m sure that each has been aware of its effects.  The care crisis occurs from the current and ever present tension of the work-life/family conflict.  I have researched and written papers on such topics as the need for paid sick and paternal leave, the International Labour Organization’s adoption of decent working standards for domestic workers, the Supreme Court Ruling on Wal-Mart, the need to raise the debt ceiling, the current American Time-Use Survey, and the feminization of poverty that is reinforced by the migration patterns of domestic women workers into “global care chains.” It has been a pretty exhausting internship, but like I mentioned previously, a great step towards connecting my plans for after Nicaragua…not to mention time to explore one of the nation’s most exciting and politically aware cities!


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