In January, I had the privilege of traveling to Guatemala with my favorite human rights group, AJWS, and 13 rabbis. They are committed to advancing social justice and ending poverty in 19 different countries around the world. It seems trite to say that I'm inspired by the activists I meet on these trips, but I am. Most of the time, I work in the commercial world and it is so good to step into a different one, where ordinary people have dedicated their lives to service. It's marvelous to see that it doesn't take special circumstances to be courageous. It's simply something you do, a choice you make everyday, sometimes in the most mundane ways. Everywhere I go, I'm humbled and I'm in love. People are kind, brave, generous, warm, and of course, flawed. They're just like you, they're just like me. We are all beautiful humans.
I am especially moved by women, not only by the incredible work they do for their communities and on behalf of the marginalized, but on a personal level, how they dare to take up space. I didn't learn this growing up, and I had everything I needed while many of them didn't. I'm called to be courageous, powerful, and whip smart.
My official job was to document the experience of the wonderful rabbis in AJWS's social justice fellowship program as well as the grassroots organizers whom AJWS works with. I loved every minute, and if you've never traveled with rabbis, well, I can say that they're very good at making you feel seen and listened to. Fun!
I loved Guatemala so so much and would like to return for a longer stay to study Spanish (love Guatemalan Spanish!) in Antigua. Thank you, AJWS, for the work you do, for being a great client, and for exposing me to a better world. Best job ever.