Sunday, February 19, 2012

So... MAPLE

This week I officially began volunteering with MAPLE Microdevelopment... and I love it. Let me first began by saying I live for academic settings. The idealism and energy that volunteers and students have brings so much to the table that a typical paid worker lacks. There is innovation, creation, respect, and a beautiful free flow of thought.

While my knowledge of grantwriting got me in the door, it is evident I will be doing way more than that. The Eugene MAPLE team (we have arms in Portland and San Francisco) is fairly new and we are going to be very action oriented, when we actually get the point of implementation! We are at square one right now, looking at how to increase personal and village incomes of those associated with MAPLE microsavings groups through increased access to and knowledge of agriculture. When I say square one, I mean square one.

We are shooting ideas off like mad, over the entire gamut- solar panels, how much do phones and subsequent SMS/data plans work, are apps possible, how much knowledge is actually gained through a CELAC  SMS, what are the critics saying, how do we mitigate currency exchange transaction costs, amid myriad of others.

I love this sort of thing- people being brilliant, looking for innovation, to make lives better for everyone. It really is an honor to be apart of such a group. I will be learning so much and am excited to be involved in the actual strategic planning of the project and not just writing the grant. 

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