A Change of Roles

India

October 9, 2003

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    Anup (in Mercy Corps cap) seen here helping Samridhi to demonstrate natural filtration. Photo: Colin Spurway/Mercy Corps Photo:

Being the CHAI Finance Officer, most of my time is devoted to the CHAI Project's finance department. However, I have always had a strong desire to go out and help in the villages, and this is exactly what prompted me to have a little fun with a change of role for a day last week.

Equipped with basic knowledge of the different techniques involved in learning about the needs of the community, and after receiving some training in the field of health and hygiene from our colleagues in the health department, I ventured out of the office, ready for a new challenge. The village of Plungdung was where I would test my skills.

The training began as always with a small exercise with the volunteer group. This is done to energize them before the more strenuous training really begins. Once done with the exercise, the training began, and eventually came my turn. I had to provide part of the training on ‘Water and Water Borne Diseases’.

I was a little jittery to start with, but in no time all the edginess disappeared and there I was conducting the training in full swing, throwing in jokes between discussions to lighten up the environment, and encouraging the participants to speak their mind. I asked them questions while at the same time answering the queries from the volunteers. It turned out to be a great fun and quite effective. To say the least, I enjoyed myself in the new role thoroughly. It certainly was a rewarding learning experience, but will I ever change departments completely? Keep on guessing!