Live in the moment

July 25, 2018 | Sidra, Joint Honours - Criminology and Women's Studies, Malawi, Uniterra, Coalition of Women Living with HIV and AIDS, Information Management Officer

As I approach the end of my mandate, I can’t help but reflect on all the things I am going to miss

The Coalition of Women Living with HIV and AIDS (COWLHA) head office, Lilongwe

The Coalition of Women Living with HIV and AIDS (COWLHA) head office, Lilongwe

here in Lilongwe. Throughout this experience, I find that I’ve learned so much through developing new skills at work, partaking in once-in-a lifetime activities and meeting so many amazing people. Though I do my best to live in the moment, I find I am itching to take it all in, because in a few short weeks I will be back in Canada.

I’ve never been a way for such a substantial amount of time, so I didn’t know what to make of a 3-month tenure abroad. I’m glad that I embarked on this journey with little to no expectations,

Lunch in Area 13, Lilongwe with WUSC employees

Lunch in Area 13, Lilongwe with WUSC employees

because it has ensured the life I’ve established in Malawi is organic. Every time I walk through the market, I find myself adding details to the mental image I’d like to engrain in my brain forever. I didn’t realize how attached I’d grow to people I’ve met
Myself with COWLHA intern, Josephine and Program officer, Tamala in Ntcheu

Myself with COWLHA intern, Josephine and Program officer, Tamala in Ntcheu

and mundane activities that I’ve never partaken in, like watching soccer games.

Personally, I’ve always been comfortable putting traveling on the back burner, because I’ve had other priorities. So I most definitely did not sign up for this internship to travel, it’s simply been an added bonus. A few weeks ago, I went into the field with COWLHA, where I attended monthly meetings and saw direct benefits of program initiatives. Last week, we went on a Safari, which further contributed to renewing my sense of curiosity. I am fortunate to have been born and raised in Canada, but this internship has granted me new eyes and perspective.

Photos of some of the Elephants we saw in South Luangwa, Zambia

Photos of some of the Elephants we saw in South Luangwa, Zambia

Through both my professional and personal experiences in Malawi, I have further ingrained a sense of responsibility within myself to continue to support development. I am constantly looking for ways in which I can be part of the solution and I feel much more equipped to do so. I have a newfound appreciation for all the opportunities I’ve been given and feel a general sense of empowerment.

Whether that be through traveling or getting involved at home Canada, this internship has fostered a desire not only to see more of the world. I look forward to the next chapter and seeking new avenues to channel the invaluable lessons I’ve learned.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.