ENVIRONMENTAL STEWARDSHIP: THE TASKS AND CHALLENGES
In working to organize, advocate and create opportunities for women to succeed in natural resource management, I have been intermittently confronted by issues that challenge the very soul of what I believed I wanted to do. The initial stage of working out a blueprint was exciting and ingenious! An inner fulfillment and optimism lurked within me. However, as events unfolded, the mission I had begun became confronted by the question and issue of competence, high expectations, leadership, innovation, trust, gender prejudice, social differences (diversity), lack of financial and human resources, and illiteracy that characterized my work environment. I felt very vulnerable and experienced the fear of failure. Feats of hesitation and questions of………..why, what, when, how, where, whom, who, became my regular companion. These challenges seemed to create a form of resistance to the transformation I was bringing into the world in my own unique way. Many times I considered the unchallenging choice of quitting, even though I was sure that I had a vision and a passionate idea of building a strong and vibrant organization; that will help and support others to protect our lovely planet. Just at the edge of giving up, I found strength in sharing, listening to and learning from a woman who was creating positive change in my community via rehabilitating and supporting women who are victims of prostitution, abuse and neglect. She helped shift my belief system into something more empowering. My ingenuity came alive once again, and one by one, I began to overcome some of the barriers that limited me and my work. I continued my work conscientiously and adopted a leadership style characterized by learning from others and sharing and giving away control; and began placing communal achievement above achieving alone. As I became open to sharing responsibilities, ideas, decision making and resources, my networking horizon stretched and I began experiencing true change and also overcome some of the foregoing barriers. By developing an ability to empower myself and offering people a sense of connection to my work welcoming their intellectual and pecuniary support, I have been able to establish a safe ground upon which I inspire members of my community to change and bring my vision into manifestation. In recent times, I have begun paying closer attention to engaging online communities in my work. My recent stint has awakened me to an entirely new and stimulating experience of speaking, listening sharing and learning, which makes me wish I had been a more proactive member, since joining World Pulse. I had never imagined or visualized the power of online communities in the manner it has unfolded to me through my participation in the 2011 Voices of Our Future tasks. The prospects of creating a value based and shared community through PulseWire appears promising. I now view PulseWire and other online communities differently and intend to maximize the emerging, specific and demystifying interpretations resources and values they can bring to my work.