When I first landed in DC in May to start my journey in the US, I was excited and anxious at the same time. I knew this year was going to be different in so many ways. I had doubts because leaving home, family and friends is never easy but I was definitely ready to embrace change, constantly keeping in mind the famous quote of Lily Leung “When in doubt, choose change.”
Information and Communication for Development (ICT4D) and Social Change
Information and Communication Technologies for Development (ICT4D) refer to the use of information and communication technologies (ICTs) in the fields of socioeconomic development, international development, and human rights. The theory behind this is more and better information and communication further the development of a society.
Aside from its reliance on technology, ICT4D also requires an understanding of community development, poverty, agriculture, healthcare, and basic education. Richard Heeks suggests that the I in ICT4D is related with “library and information sciences”, the C is associated with “communication studies”, the T is linked with “information systems”, and the D for “development studies”. It is aimed at bridging the digital divide and assisting economic development by fostering equitable access to modern communications technologies, and it is a powerful tool for economic and social development.
I was browsing the internet with my son, Sanim, and I saw the confirmation letter from Atlas Corps in my email. I asked my wife to hold him so that I could check my email. My excited eyes were on the screen but my ears were listening to my wife. She just asked me and insisted I answer her, “What does Atlas Corps mean to you”? I looked back at her and started to think of the best answer which she might like most. After hearing me, she smiled and gave me her silent permission to go ahead.
“Adán y sobre todo Eva, tienen el mérito original de habernos liberado del paraíso,
nuestro pecado es que anhelamos regresar a él”.
Estanislao Zuleta. Elogio de la dificultad.
There was a day in the past when all of us, Atlas Corps fellows, received wonderful news. I am talking about the email that confirmed we had been accepted by our host organizations; and in a few months we will be traveling from our home countries to the United States to serve for several months. In my personal experience, I could not be happier and a lot of expectations crossed my mind: from all the professional experience that I would gain, to all the new people that I would meet. However, along with the expectations came the fears of living in a country with a different language, different weather, and getting adapted to a new work environment. These were the main challenges I faced.