Empathy, trust and respect: Village Stay

Learning about and working within the development sector from a classroom, behind a computer screen, from watching the news or behind a desk in an air-conditioned office in a capital anywhere in the world will only teach you so much. Building empathy, trust and relationships that are genuine and meaningful with those living in vulnerable and poor situations will allow you to experientially build your understanding of their multiple stories and the systems in which they live.

These are wise words from my colleague at Engineers Without Borders, Miriam, on the power of understanding people and empathizing with their realities as part of a village stay.


DonorsChoose Data

I’m still unsure if I think the work of DonorsChoose.org is great for the educational system, or papering over the more fundamental problem of under-funded public schools.

But I am convinced that their open data site is simply cool!


It’s also a great demonstration of what you can do with scale. We’ve had similar ideas at www.ewb.ca, but we just don’t have the staff or volunteer capacity to put this kind of product out there.