Chile

Working Abroad in Santiago, Chile

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Nicolette Joakim is a student at Saint Joseph’s College and an ISA Photo Blogger. She is currently interning abroad with ISA Internships in Santiago, Chile.

For the past two and a half months, I have been working for a Jewish organization called Memoria Viva Fundación (Living Memory Foundation). This organization has interviewed and collected over 100 testimonies of Holocaust survivors and refugees who made Chile their homeland. A week before my internship started they had just interviewed a survivor from Auschwitz. What they do here at Memoria Viva is incredible and inspiring and I honestly couldn’t have found a better internship. They have a huge event at the end of November and I actually extended my stay here in Chile so I would be able to participate.  The event is for the publishing of their book “Living Memory” which is comprised of all the testimonies they have collected. I am so excited for the book launch and I feel very lucky that I am able to have this experience.

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I was so excited when I got to Santiago that I took the time to search out my workplace before my first day.

 

I have the cutest little desk and share my office with two of my coworkers and my supervisor/boss has the office right next to us. I work with the sweetest people who have been so helpful in every aspect. For the Jewish New Year Rash Hashanah they wanted to put together bundles of honey sticks that they wanted to give to everyone who helped with their projects and to those who they interviewed. I put it all together and there were 1,000 honey sticks in all!

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Near the office, there is a Starbucks and an amazing Colombian café within a five-minute walk. I prefer the Colombian café because the coffee is stronger and taste so much better.  I’ve had a lot of different coffee from all over the world and this Café’s coffee seems to be the only coffee that keeps me awake!

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I am finally living my dream I can’t imagine letting it go. I have done meaningful work before and that is what made me want to work in peace and conflict resolution. It was very fulfilling, but at the same time is was not as fulfilling as this. I have contributed so much to what Memoria Viva has needed. I have designed a contest, written proposals to embassies, I even helped research designs for their new website. It is so incredible what we have done in the past few months.

The work Memoria Viva is doing is so inspiring and meaningful. I have grown so fond of everyone I have worked with that I know when I go home it is going to be very hard to readjust to living in the states. I have been so blessed to have been able to be a part of this amazing organization. This opportunity that has changed my life forever.

The world awaits…discover it.

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