Ripple Effects: A Drop Into A Wave Into An Unstoppable Force

This day, this moment. It is something I will never forget.

These are some of the smartest young women I have ever had the privilege to speak with, and I know there are many more, waiting for someone to allow them a voice.
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I began with a series of questions I had specifically designed with a goal in mind. First I aimed to understand their opinions of current female and male dynamics. This was not only for my benefit but also so they could develop a base during this conversation.
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As we progressed the questions were placed in a way to challenge the previous statements. The “why” to their “what’s”. I watched as they doubled back all on their own. Without me explaining they began to look at me, all at once I saw it, they made the connection that I had hoped for. Two girls instantly exclaimed, “Now I understand why you were asking those earlier questions!! It’s all connected!!” As one girl began cycling her hands while speaking, “we are connected! It’s a cycle that takes both men AND women to change their understanding of one another. It begins when we are little, it’s the little things we ourselves unknowingly reinforce every day.” 
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This day I proved to myself that I could effectively listen to the voices of our future and guide them to deeper avenues of understanding on gender relations. I’m proud of Belize for allowing the engagement of their young people on S&R talks. This country’s activists understand the importance of learning from the perspectives of their adolescents, their experiences and perceptions will become their realities. Once we collectively understand this we can began to effectively help ourselves create healthier life experiences for people across the globe.
 
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#servelearnexplore #interninbelize #endthecycle #genderdynamics #socialresponsibility #adolescentes #femaleempowerment #studyinbelize #bethechangeyouseek #rippleeffect @ Santa Elena, Cayo, Belize
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Thank you Fredy Rafael Rodriguez Mejia for bringing this trip to my attention and for the recommendation.
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Monica Williamson I owe you a big thank you as well for also putting in a good word for me. Couldn’t have made this possible without the continued encouragement and the extra work you put in last semester. By agreeing to jump on the rollarcoaster ride that is my mind, you stepped in, took the time to listen to my crazy ambitions, organized my thoughts and asked the questions needed when I struggled. Your support means the world to me. Honored to call you my friend.
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To my coordinators Oumatie Marajh  of MSU, Rhondine Petrof and Elissa Waight from Toucan Education Program, thank you for this opportunity to come to Belize. The growth I have experienced here is something I will forever hold close to my heart. I will be looking at every chance I get to continue coming to Belize and staying in touch while back in the states with the work I have started here.
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Last but not least by a long shot, to my supervisors, Nurse Witz and Ms.Lupita at Belize Family Life Association (BFLA) and Mrs. Moreno, Sharon Mena, and Melanie Contreras at Santa Elena Library it has been an honor to work with every single one of you ladies. You have made me feel so at home and cared for. You are all prime examples of everything women can be and I look up to all of you for your efforts and continued work you do to provide knowledge and aid to your country’s communities. Your love and commitment is inspiring.

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