Expectation. Expression. Encouragement.
In lieu of my “out-of-the-ordinary” move, the following week was closer to what I had imagined to be my internship with OHWW. On the Monday after I submitted my first progress report to Arlene and Sibylle, I sat down with Arlene to go over my expectations for the summer. She asked me to research and compile a list of foundations and funds that we could potentially partner with; to name a few, the Mulago Foundation, the Greenbaum Foundation, and Global Giving. Although it was hours and hours of work in front of the computer and pages of foundations to go through, I was given the opportunity to practice my analytical skills. I searched for what each foundation’s respective initiatives supports and determined whether the grant-making foundation is compatible to what we are doing in Nepal and Mexico. In additional to research, I was assigned to write a few grants and project reports. While completing these tasks, I deepened my understanding of what OHWW has done and how OHWW got to the place it is in today.
Understanding is bidirectional. Expression of one’s emotions/feelings/thoughts is crucial to a deeper and personal relationship. Misunderstanding tends to arise from the lack of communication; in my case, it stemmed from ungrounded presumption. I have to admit that I had wronged my organization by not expressing my expectations in the beginning. The responsiveness of my supervisor was encouraging; she gave me feedback on my accomplished tasks.
Words of encouragement do make a difference. They empower, loosen tensions, and motivate.