“The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of cha
I was once a consulting psychologist in a medium sized South African organisation. I had been an intern in the organisation and towards the end of my internship; I was invited to stay on as a permanent member of staff. Whilst I worked through various projects with a team of three women from very diverse cultures and generations, I found myself becoming more and more bored with the work I was doing and more and more frustrated with the notion that I and ultimately ‘we’, had ‘no voice’ or room to speak our minds. Seven months into my new appointment, something snapped inside me and at what I thought was demotivation and discontent, turned out to be a sudden zeal to ‘get out there’ and make my mark. So I applied for a teaching job at one of South Africa’s leading research universities and at the beginning of 2009, I found myself leaving home at 4am, with a car packed full of all my possessions and drove 1000km away from home to begin my new life. I had never lived away from home before this and I was excited at the prospect of being more independent. Whilst I have settled into my new teaching job and am currently writing up a proposal to pursue a PhD- something was still missing from my life. I’ve always had an interest in women studies, but have never had an opportunity to engage with my interest-not because I didn’t want to, but because I was comfortable going about my daily business . . . keeping to my comfort zone.
Approximately six weeks ago, I found myself searching the internet for ways to contribute to not only the South African society (which is tainted with a scandalous history of apartheid), but to society in general. I was looking for an opportunity to speak for others, through community engagement. I found the World Pulse website and the ‘Voices of our Future Programme’ and I was excited! Excited at the prospect of connecting with people who are also out of their comfort zones, interacting with people whose languages I don’t speak, and whose cultures I am unfamiliar with. What better way for me to enthuse others about my country as well as the world than to do it right here! And so I look on my personal vision (the quote by Martin Luther King, Jnr) and I know that I have finally come full circle.