The Career Coach is In

Making a difference in Africa

Please indulge me in my blogs over the next two weeks. I am fortunate enough to be on assignment in South Africa and will be blogging when I am able. Alan DeBack, a career professional and colleague of mine will be filling in periodically, as well.

However, I want to share my experience with you while I am here, relative to this blog. I am working with people in the international development field from all over Africa. Let me tell you from a career stand point, if you have interest in making a difference, this is an area that desperately needs help. I am with people that are fighting malaria, HIV/AIDS, malnutrition and poor--if any--sanitization and agricultural development from countries such as Uganda, Sudan, Zimbabwe, Botswana, and Madagascar, to name a few. Many of these professionals are with USAID and the State Department. They are hard working individuals that despite the conditions that they face are passionate and committed to help in humanitarian relief.

I am looking forward to telling you about what I encounter.

I grew up not really knowing too much about the international development profession. Although I have coached individuals that have returned from missions in Africa, I have not been on "their turf" before. It has certainly changed my perspective on the work they do.

One man was telling me that after spending 20 years in the practice of law, he decided to join the Foreign Service so that if he lives until he is 80, he can say he did something, other than suing people and making a lot of money. He is now living in a metal "pod" in Afghanistan, developing a more effective way to filter water. Talk about making a difference!

So the reason I feel compelled to write this blog is 2 fold.
1. If you are not aware of the field of international development, explore it!
2. Go for your passion, live your dreams and in whatever way you choose, make a difference; people less fortunate than us, will appreciate it.

I hope to share more stories with you about the folks that I am meeting on my journey.

By

Marshall Brown

 |  October 21, 2010; 6:15 AM ET  |  Category:  Career Change , Career Exploration , Job Search Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
Previous: What? No business card? | Next: Following up after an interview

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