I can't believe I've left everyone hanging since Saturday when I mentioned that we got our project descriptions but didn't actually tell you what we'll be doing. Sorry about that folks.
So, the back story is that in order to get Tanzanian visas we have to list our job title and job description. None of the other 5 countries that MKLM serves has to do that. So most missioners won't know their job until they're in the country, can tour the job sites, and get a feel for where their education, talents and interests will best fit. I think there's positives and negatives to both ways of doing it, but I certainly appreciate knowing ahead of time what my job will be! So, we sat down with our Regional Coordinator* on Thursday of last week and hashed out where we'll be working. I am thrilled to say that it sounds like both of our jobs will be perfect fits!
I will be working at the Catholic Diocese of Mwanza in their Women's Programming Desk. I'll be working with a native Tanzanian woman who's been the "lone ranger" in the office but she doesn't have enough time to get all the work done. The programs they run include: Gender and HIV/AIDS, Gender and Inequality, Supporting Women in Civic
Engagement, Support for Single Mothers and Women and Agriculture, to name just a few. So, needless to say, I'm totally stoked and I feel like it's all coming full circle. This is the exact type of work that I wanted to do and my skills and education will certainly be utilized in this job.
Chris will also be working with women, but in a different capacity and through a different organization. His job will be assisting an NGO with women's cooperatives. His job will be a lot more nebulous because it's basically just sitting with women in the area and finding out what kinds of things they'd like to start, and then helping them start them. There are already a few coops already started, one of which is a womens' singing and drumming group. He's totally psyched about that!
Time will tell what these jobs will really look like, but at this point we feel very positive about it and can't wait to get started!
*All of the Regional Coordinators from around the world are in NY this week for a meeting of the Global Council. That's a benefit to us newbies because we get to meet the people who essentially are our in-country supervisors and who will be a great resource to us while we're abroad. Our RC is GREAT!