Top Ten Things I Learned on my 21st Trip to Refugee Camps
(in no particular order)
1. “Inevitable” is just a word that does not need to be accepted, if we are talking about children going hungry in the process of that “inevitable transition to self-reliance.”
2. After 21 trips to the camps, all I know is that it does not get any easier to navigate this complicated, often frustrating, journey through Chad.
3. Play does not have any calories, but it nourishes and grows the spirit in a special and essential way.
4. Surround yourself with smart, caring, dedicated, creative, and relentless people, and then just take credit for all that gets done. Just kidding! But, they do make you look good.
5. Girl. Power. It must be allowed to thrive.
6. Yeah, there’s something cool and even romantic about a bucket bath out when you’re roughing it, but then I get back to the city, and damn that shower at the hotel feels like heaven!
7. Given the opportunity, leaders will emerge and embrace the opportunity and responsibility to make life better for others.
8. Kids want to learn. We adults should do better in making it happen.
9. It can feel overwhelming, when surrounded by extreme hardship and suffering, but you take a deep breath and look into one child’s eyes, and that gives you energy to keep going for as long as you need.
10. 100 years are not enough to learn some important lessons.
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