Saturday, November 19, 2011


Hey Folks,

Just walked in from a snowy drive back to Minneapolis after my presentation to the Hope Interfaith Center's Leadership Group. I was a tad nervous as I hadn't really planned much, but it went well! I showed the Omprakash powerpoint and spoke about CULP and on my experiences in Ghana, Africa and how I am planning for my upcoming trip to India.

 I also spent a period of time speaking specifically about asset based community development. During my term with Public Allies we had a heavy focus on "ABCD" and as Omprakash seeks to end "voluntourism" ABCD seeks to end "drive-by service."  Meaning in order to be leaders abroad, or leaders in any community that is not our own, we must not look from the outside in. It is important to build relationships in the communities we plan to work in. Instead of listing the deficits in an area and making assumptions about what they need or want, we should be listing every possible asset. What's working for said community, and how can I help to buil their capacity.

This is not to say that any amount of help or assistance isn't worth while or helping, it's only to say that the impact will not be nearly as great as we intend if we do not work from within the community, building upon their assets and assisting the community to heal itself.

Wonderful conversation with the women of the HIC Leadership Group and many thanks for having me!


Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Preparations and Upcoming Events!

Well folks, vaccines are well underway only one more preventative rabies shot and i'm all set! Recently I've been focused on finding places to table or present for Omprakash and C.U.L.P and this Saturday I will be at the Mankato Interfaith Coalitions Symposium to table! I'm excited to attend the event, hear the speakers and have a chance to speak with people from all backgrounds on the opportunities to contribute to these grassroots organizations through Omprakash. If you live in the area I would love to see you there- The event will be held at the Hope Interfaith Center on 114 Pohl Rd, Mankato MN.
As a recent graduate from the first class of Twin Cities Public Allies, I also plan on giving a quick talk upon returning to the second class of graduates who will be finishing their terms in August 2012. Hopefully more opportunities to spread the word before I leave in January will come about and when they do, I'll be sure to let you know!

Shortly here it will be time to start looking into my Visa for traveling in India and travel insurance for the stay. In the meantime i'm making lists, things to pack, things to buy, currently looking for a mosquito net, nice pair of sandals-Teva's, and a good duffle bag/backpack. It's been a busy time preparing, working and going to school, but I can see the light at the end of the tunnel, as the semester will be over mid December.

Thanks for the support and Happy Holidays!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

I'm Engaged!!

To myself, of course.
On my last adventure to Ghana, I had about 30 marriage proposals. After being flattered by the first couple, it just became a nusiance. There is a certain amount of attention you draw as a blonde, American when traveling abroad. My good friend Amit suggested on this trip, I buy a wedding ring. I face another challenge being in a conservative country with a sleeve tattoo, and as I am very concerned with respect, both giving it and being worthy of receiving it, I am going to do whatever I can to avoid unwanted attention. However, I am pretty excited to buy a crappy, cheap wedding ring and pretend to be married. His name is Ronald, a pharmacist with a mustache and love of fine wine.

In other news I officially purchased my flights! I will be leaving Minneapolis on January 10th and departing Delhi on June 7th. My vaccination consult is coming up on October 25th and I am about 99% sure I have to get Rabies shots...emphasis on the plural...3 shots in all. The reason being, that in Jaipur the favored deity is Hanuman, a monkey god, meaning there is a prevelance of temples filled with monkeys who are very "friendly" towards people. I'll be sure to get back to you with the exact number of shots I need after the consult!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

What's this blog all about?

First off, welcome to my blog, A broad, abroad!

Recently I was given a grant from the Omprakash Foundation to cover the costs of a volunteer trip to Jaipur, India. I will be leaving the U.S sometime in January and heading to Rajasthan to work with Dr. Kulhari and his organization, The Center for Unfolding Learning Potential, or CULP. I am beyond excited to make this journey and to promote the fantastic opportunities available to volunteers in the US and abroad with Omprakash. Please feel free to visit the site and check out the partner organizations or check out my partner organization directly at 

In exchange for the grant money given to me by Omprakash, I am also responsible for connecting others to the Omprakash network and promoting grassroots volunteerism! Before I leave in January, I will be tabling at different events in both the Metro and Mankato area. If anyone knows of some events coming up- let me know! I will be updating frequently on the preparations for the trip and hope to be able to share the experience with a wide audience.

Thanks for the support!
Updates to come soon :)
~ Sara