Good Neighbors welcomes our newest interns, Mimi and Anthony. Check out this in-depth Q&A about their goals, inspirations and why they joined the team!
- What made you decide to intern for Good Neighbors?
Anthony: I decided to Intern at Good Neighbors because I wanted to gain editing and marketing experience and see how organizations reach across cultural barriers to communicate and provide resources. I’ve always been interested in writing about cultural intersections; here they encounter challenge of communicating locally and globally everyday.
Mimi: I was fortunate enough to experience first hand who Good Neighbors is and what they stand for. This past June, I was asked to travel to Guatemala as their photographer to document Project Cookstove. Working with their team allowed me to understand the unconditional love they have for the children, their families, and the communities. They are what I would like to believe what an NGO is all about. I felt honored to be a part of their cause and that was my reason to become more involved with them. My goal is to gain better knowledge of how a non-profit organization like Good Neighbors work. I would also like to further my skills in communications by working with the Managing Editor.
- What is your favorite Good Neighbors project and why?
Anthony: I’m a big fan of the Cookstove Project in Guatemala, because it is such a practical and sustainable way to make a large impact in a community. Sometimes it can be hard to place concrete solutions to a specific need in a community, but this initiative pinpoints a creative means of improving the overall quality of life for families around the world. I find that kind of innovation to be very endearing.
Mimi: My favorite project is the Child Sponsorship. Although the Project Cookstove and Water For Life projects make an incredible impact on the communities, I believe that in order to better our humanity, it is vital to start with the children and their education. By allowing these children basic necessities such as education, healthcare, and nutrition, they can develop into intelligent adults who will strive for a better life. It gives them hope to break the cycle of poverty for themselves and future generations.
- What are your career goals after the internship?
Anthony: My degree was in journalism at UC Irvine. Right now I am looking into masters programs in global communications or journalism. My ultimate goal is to become a creative writing professor and to partner with community-based organizations to help improve literacy rates domestically and abroad.
Mimi: I plan to pursue my dreams of traveling the world and capturing the reality of our humanity through working with NGO’s like Good Neighbors. Photography is my passion and the experience I gain from interning at Good Neighbors will be essential to my work.
- What inspires you and why?
Anthony: The idea of third culture really inspires me, the mindset and will to love, learn and serve in any culture even in the midst of pain and discomfort. As the world is becoming more interdependent, it is important to navigate the tension between being accommodating of new perspectives and retain a sense of cultural authenticity. In Arts like music, cinema, language, etc, adaptation is an everyday reality that we seldom pay attention to, but is vital to relatability. Whenever we meet someone, it is almost instinctive to mimic their speech patterns or tone, and our verbiage is always morphing to incorporate aspects of the vernacular that people around us speak. If we can do that so intuitively with language, there is no reason why we can’t apply an ethic of humbly adapting to share wisdom and resources. I’ve played soccer at every youth, amateur and professional level in the US and the greatest thing that I’ve taken from it is the experience of playing with people from all around the world, and with many of whom I didn’t share the same language. The beauty of chemistry and well-intentioned cooperation is that all hurdles can be leaped and obstacles can be subverted when you find a common vision to move forward with. Vision emerges out of great relationships and I believe that the more I’m able to partner with organizations like Good Neighbors and learn from passionate people who are fully invested in their social projects, the more able and equipped I’ll be to engage whatever community I come in contact with.
Mimi: I can draw inspiration from almost everything I see as a photographer but most of all, faces are what truly inspires me. I always get caught people watching. Every single face has a unique story and it fascinates me to where I find myself wanting to know more about that individual. Photography allows me to get to know them and learn about their past, their present, and their future.
- How has your experience been with Good Neighbors so far?
Anthony: This is my first full week of the internship and I’m really enjoying the office dynamic and atmosphere. Everyone is engaging, fun to be around, and they pride themselves on doing great work. I’m still trying to come up to speed with completing tasks and generating ideas to contribute efficiently, but it has been a great start so far.
Mimi: It has been a very exciting experience for me so far. Everyone at the Good Neighbors office has made me feel at home and I appreciate the working relationship each staff member has with one another. They show each other respect and work very well as a team. The responsibilities assigned to me are educational and I have been learning new things every step of the way. I’m excited to see where these experiences will take me.