2017 CARE Leadership Summit

2017 CARE Leadership Summit

9/27/17

The Leadership Summit is a weekend when advocates from all over the country gather to hear from CARE leaders, receive training, and hear how other advocates are taking action in the field. This year, we focused on training new advocates to join our amazing team of long-time advocate leaders who are at the forefront of organizing support in their communities to further CARE’s mission to save lives, defeat poverty and achieve social justice. 

Before coming to the Leadership Summit, everything I knew about CARE and the Citizen Advocacy Team was either online or heard through word-of-mouth. During my Peace Corps service, I saw a CARE truck pass through my rarely-visited village in Mozambique and knew this was an organization I wanted to know more about. However, my resources were limited to videos, websites and papers. Not that these resources are insufficient, but they don’t compare to the palpable energy felt in a CARE boardroom filled with people who are actively engaging working for positive change.

The Leadership Summit opened my eyes to the very real, on-the-ground, and effective work that CARE is doing and how advocates participate to keep the movement going. I felt inspired being in a room with people who are using their own time to get involved in a movement that speaks to them.  The most striking components for me were the similarities I saw between the lessons I learned in my Peace Corps service and CARE’s steps to making lasting change: move step-by-step, change one heart and mind at a time, build relationships. These stood out to me because I felt like I learned these lessons in the field, through trial and error, working with people in a comparable way to how CARE came to value these as parts of the change process. Therefore, I began to understand how CARE succeeds in on-the-ground, community engaged work.

I spent the weekend in awe of the inspirational people that support CARE’s mission. From Michelle Nunn encouraging us to remember the faces when looking at the statistics, to Jonathan Young explaining that we are working for the long haul, to Chef Asha Gomez telling us the story about the potato farmer reminding us that change happens one person at a time. The Leadership Summit brought to life all the amazing things I had read about CARE and made me realize I shouldn’t have been surprised to see CARE’s truck in my little village in Mozambique.

By Annie Duncan, Citizen Advocacy Intern based in Atlanta. Annie is a first-year student at Emory’s Rollins School of Public Health focusing on Behavioral Sciences and Health Education.

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