Hawa – Freedom Tree intern 2014

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Working with Freedom tree in Canada and in Sierra Leone has exposed me to several heart-breaking situations and the desire to work even harder to help vulnerable people. Extreme poverty is very common in that part of the world. Daily, I’ve come across people that are very desperate and needy for survival. I’ve witnessed children dumpster diving, men and women working very hard every day to make provision for their families, but yet such provision is very limited. Moreover, for many people, the possibility of having one meal a day seems very impossible due to personal and institutional barriers. This placement has given me the opportunity to experience a different way of life that I am no longer accustomed to and to get out of my comfort zone in order to take advantage of the many opportunities that life has to offer. My placement in Sierra Leone enabled me to apply my knowledge and skills towards a good cause. I’ve grown both personally and professionally as a result of my work with the people in the villages. The practicum gave me a first-hand experience of what it means to be resilient, open-minded and culturally sensitive. Moreover, I have learned that sometimes we need to develop different coping mechanism in order to deal effectively with adversity.

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