CDI is excited to report that class of 2008 Scholar Isel Otero Vera, a 2012 graduate of Bryn Mawr, is spending the next year in Kerala, India as part of an exchange program with Profugo, an international nonprofit focused on helping developing nations. As part of her duties, she’s managing three projects: a women’s tailoring cooperative, an agricultural project, and an aquaponics project. Sound exciting? It sure does. But don’t take my word for it. Here’s Isabel herself describing her work on the tailoring project:
“I’m collaborating with a group of women to develop a business cooperative for local and international markets. The project also includes business and English classes. The women are teaching me how to speak Malayalam (the local language). After much giggling (my accent in Malayalam is very funny), I’ve already mastered the colors, articles of clothing, and some other tailoring-related words. I have also learned the Malayalam names of some fruits and vegetables for the agricultural project. We are building a community kitchen garden with area children. We have also visited a couple of local agencies involved in organic farming and they seem very happy to collaborate with us as we try to incorporate some of their techniques in our community.”
You can find out more about Isabel’s adventures in India on her blog, Isel Otero Vera–The Profugo Blog. But we’ll also post excerpts from her blog periodically right here.