Born and raised in the northern Midwest, I am a young woman (an "Un-Mama" for the purpose of this blog,) currently preparing for my departure to another West--West Africa.
Ghana, to be precise.
During the month of January, I will fulfill an academic internship with a fair trade, non-profit called Global Mamas. Women in Progress, an international volunteer organization, helped me develop this internship, and I accepted, gratefully, a Kloeck-Jenson Scholarship from St Olaf to make all of this possible.
Together, Women in Progress and Global Mamas promote economic independence for Ghanian women; these organizations offer women microloans and managerial support so they can form their own small manufacturing operations. Global Mamas then markets their handcrafted items in Ghana, in the US, online, and for wholesale purchases. My work for Global Mamas will be writing-intensive--updating the website, writing a quarterly update and annual report, and writing descriptions of merchandise--and I will also be writing in my journal and here, on my blog.
Needless to say, I'm excited for what lies before me, but I'm also looking ahead and thinking, "My life is going to change drastically in the next five weeks. How can I prepare for that?"
I can't. So my goal is to depart the Minneapolis/St Paul airport on January 2nd with no expectations. Impossible? Yes. And I know that I'll still be shocked and surprised throughout this journey. But at this point, I'm preaching open-mindedness to myself and hoping I remember my own sermon.
With an adventuresome spirit,
Elizabeth Eva Lampman