Thoughts from an agricultural development gal in Ghana

One Year Anniversary

I posted this on Twitter, but wanted to quickly put it up here on my blog. Some short reflections in the middle of an extremely busy week. (By the way, you can follow me on Twitter @erinantcliffe if you so desire.)


One year ago today I arrived in Ghana to start my 1 year EWB placement.

Here’s what I’ve learned in the past year:

  1. One year is long enough for personal impact, but not long enough for systemic change (though you can contribute to long-term change).
  2. I’ve learned a lot in the past year about Ghana, agriculture and the government, but I’ve learned even more about myself. (Duh!)
  3. There are a lot of frustrating problems in this sector & lots of barriers to change, but also a LOT of people trying to make change!
  4. This is exciting, inspiring, challenging and growth-inducing work. I said it before, & I’ll say it again… I love working for EWB!!

Now my 1-year EWB placement has become 3 years, and I’m moving from contributing on the ground to a higher-level management position. The work is changing, I’m changing, but my passion stays the same. Here’s to learning as much in the next 2 years as I did in the first, and to making even more change!


10 responses

  1. Hey Erin,

    Congrats on your one year anniversary from everyone here at the Western Chapter!

    – Alex+Western

    March 2, 2011 at 2:33 pm

      Hope I can chat with you guys again soon! Call me next time you have a meeting or something šŸ™‚

      March 2, 2011 at 2:38 pm

  2. Congratulations! I am so happy for you to have found a place where your skills and passion are being put to good use. I’d love to have you connect in to my class this year. Maybe in April? We will make it happen!

    March 2, 2011 at 2:43 pm

    • Yes, let’s do it!!
      Email me soon and we can start shaping some kind of interesting collaboration. I’d love to be part of your class!
      Thanks Scott, talk soon! And Hi to Laura! šŸ™‚

      March 2, 2011 at 2:48 pm

  3. ash charles

    Congrats on the first year Erin! I hope the next two are even better.

    March 2, 2011 at 5:11 pm

  4. Inga Rinne

    My connection to you is tenuous at best(friend of Jan Woynarski’s). I follow your blog in part because I spent a month working in Ghana but mostly because you are incredibly insightful and an excellent writer. Your blogs provide a wonderful perspective on international aid work in general and your work in particular.
    I have passed it on to others who work in international aid and they are similarly impressed.
    Know there are people out there who appreciate what you are producing. Way to go Erin!

    March 2, 2011 at 8:45 pm

    • Hi Inga,
      Tenuous connections bring the best blog readers! That way I know you’re reading because you genuinely enjoy my writing, not because you feel obliged. Thanks so much for the compliments! I’m glad you’ve been enjoying the blog and sharing it with others. I’d love to hear your thoughts or suggestions for other things I can write about, and feel free to comment whenever you want!

      March 3, 2011 at 1:22 pm

  5. Congratulations Erin! Change happens when people like you have patience, persistence and aspirational outlook. As you say, there are a lot of people trying to do the right thing and make life better for many. As you move forward in your second and third years, we will be cheering your efforts and those of like minds around you.

    March 2, 2011 at 10:05 pm

    • Hi Cathy,
      Thanks as always for the ongoing support!!

      March 3, 2011 at 1:22 pm

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s