GUESS WHO’S BACK!!!!!
I have missed you people…3 months in Africa has left me with wide eyes, determination, self-belief and empowerment!! I have lots of stories to tell – some inspirational, some heart breaking, some shocking, some surprising and some absolutely hilarious but 1st…
One of the main reasons I chose to volunteer internationally was to gain a wider understanding of why poverty existed, what exactly it was and to be able to talk about it with an opinion.
I am notoriously known for indifferently ‘sitting on the fence’ and while I still believe this is a prime position to be in, it doesn’t excuse my pure ignorance towards the world we live in and the tangled political mess that controls our lives.
In the last year I’ve changed massively. I’ve accepted that despite 7 years studying and working towards media/film/TV production it is now something I am happy to put to one side. Youth/Community development work is now my future, whether it is internationally, nationally or both…It’s something that sent a flutter through my tummy and my 3 month learning curve in Zambia, Southern Africa has quite literally changed my life for the good. I’m proud to say I am now officially part of #thefilmannexphilosophy
In my pure westernised naivety I thought of poverty as being nothing deeper than a serious lack of money. “Money at the root of all evil” as they say. And while it is unfortunately a massive contributing factor it goes much deeper and further back than that. Experiencing Zambia has opened my eyes to a whole new understanding that I’m still struggling to comprehend. It’s a complex system of falling dominos, where to possibly start?
Defining poverty should be the 1st step right? Narrowing it down to factors such as deprived education, sanitation/hygiene, access to health care, government corruption, greed, freedom of speech, inequality, ignorance etc etc…just these few examples and their sub-issues cross over in numerous ways, they affect each other, rely on each other and struggle to overcome change together. It feels almost impossible to start at the beginning and to truly define poverty.
We’ve all been subjected to the adverts/commercials that appeal for our help and tug at our heartstrings. A dying child has become the iconic image of ‘poverty’ and while it is sadly true in some cases – it is not as stereotypically simple or as shallow as that.
I can only speak of my own experience and what I’ve witnessed during my volunteering but I can safely say my mind is exhausted with the overwhelming realisation of just how complex and challenging poverty and positive change really is.
I’ve made it my ongoing task to write a series of blogs that reflect on my experiences, feelings, developed understanding and overall awareness of the many issues I encountered in Zambia…last thing I wanna do now is brush it all under the carpet….
It’s good to be back folks!!