Hope Shines Inc.

Hope Shines Inc.

Friday, August 7, 2015

Career Development and Hope Shines

Dan Gladden
Executive Director
Hope Shines

It was a tiring start to the day for me. Took a nice a little run this morning with one of our volunteers after about 6 hours of sleep which seems to be the norm since I’ve been here along with missing meals because of the daily grind. This has been a special trip for me mostly because we have footing for a new year and optimism seems to be more prevalent now than any time in the past for me personally with Hope Shines. I think maybe knowing that we have a structure and a clear plan with programs that are supported and admired by the Rwandese people. This is something I don’t get much since I work in a bubble being the only staff located in the US. This career I chose is always a reminder of how we as humans can do a better job of recognizing the good we do and not be so quick to just point out mistakes. Mistakes are gonna happen but keeping a positive approach will always be a better way to get this type of work done.

Ibra reading about HIV/AIDS in a cartoon

Today my country manager and I led a module on career development for 18 S4 and older kids. “S” is for Secondary senior level students that are at least 16 years old and are close to beginning the road ahead, which for them is graduation and a future at University or just straight into the work force of the Rwandan economy. Whichever path they choose, Hope Shines is here to get them prepared. We focused on two areas today; Listening and Time Management.  Both subjects were highly supported by our friends and partners at Kepler University, one of the top University programs in the country.  We’ve established a great connection with them in helping us develop curriculum for our camps and after school program as well as they have offered to give us interns that can help us down the road continue our great work on the ground with programs and projects.

We shared about 6 hours with these future leader students and wow what a day it was, much participation and interest by all the kids. I found myself actually teaching the class without a translator present because they knew English so well! Amazing how they have grown. I left the day with a sense of pride for what we have done. Sometimes I feel I am not doing enough but when I hear later that the kids even made comments about how grateful they are for us doing this, it really refuels my tank. You see this work is not about money. If you are in it for money then you gotta find something else because this doesn’t pay. BUT, if you want to see that result happen right in front of you by a kid that may or may not be able to tell you but you just get that feeling that it worked, then you are ready to continue in this type of global humanitarian development…I hope I am.

Words about Malaria for the English Dialogue Session (what the younger kids did during the Career Development)

Making the craft Mosquito at the end of the activity

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