Monday, 13 June 2011

The JF program and me

Hello everyone out there!!!

As it has come to my attention that the JF program is losing some support at my local chapter I've decided to dedicate this post to why I think the program is so important!

As a university student myself I find that the education-work system is very streamlined: you get some good high school marks, attend a nice university for 4-8 years (depending on your personal choice), and then you go and find some work with the education you achieved. For some people this is completely fine and acceptable and they are complacent with this level of experience of the world. But personally I feel at each step of this system you are confined to a bubble. Within this bubble you experience a certain number of cultures, people, and environments. A fundamental component of understanding the reality of the environments you live inside is being able to see the environments you do not experience and truly understanding what effects the decisions you make can have on those other environments that you may not have the chance to see. The JF program allows students, people armed with quality educations in their country, to realize the reality of another world and to realize their own value in this world and the implications of the everyday livelihoods of the western world.

The JF program has opened my eyes to the value of the innovation of mankind. People in Ghana use the smallest amount of resources to survive for a year, and work harder than everyone I've ever met. This work has given me an insatiable passion to use every skill that I can muster to understand lives that are nothing like mine, and push the envelope of these skills to try and see if maybe there is a solution that someone hasn't tried.

More than this the JF program has the ability to give a voice to the most often unseen and unheard rural poor of Ghana. To work within a broken system to help the people being exploited, to see this exploitation, and work to change or fix this system from the ground up.

Most importantly the JF program is an opportunity to change lives. An opportunity to open a persons eyes to reality of other environments than their own, to strive to understand these environments, and to drive ourselves to solve problems that our much bigger than ourselves. And maybe more important than that it is an opportunity to change maybe just one persons life for the better, to inspire even one  people to work with a broken system to improve their lives and to speak out in the favor of the people suffering around them.

These are some reasons why I think the JF program is important for me and has changed my life, but this is just one persons opinion :)


  1. Make that two people's opinions.
    Well put, Bill!

  2. Great post Bill. Sounds like you're getting a lot out of this experience!

  3. I agree completely, Westerners/people who grow up in wealthy countries are way too sheltered from the realities of humanity right now. And our education system can be described as a system of imposed ignorance when you consider how much extremely important realities it fails to teach.

    If we can make enough money I definitely think we need to keep sending JFs to Africa, but it's just not looking like an easy thing to do for next year because of our financial situation. Hopefully we'll be able to make a ton of money in the next coming months (looks like some famous Windsor band is gonna help us out), and be financially stable ASAP