Amy Gillespie (Uganda)

Amy Gillespie (Uganda)

Amy is currently a graduate student at New York University earning her MPH with a concentration in Global Health Leadership. She also earned her MSW from Simmons College, where she took her first trip to Uganda to work with local NGOs around issue related to HIV/AIDS and women's rights. Amy has several years of experience working as a social worker in various settings such as hospitals and homeless shelters. Her experiences motivated her to want to learn how to research, evaluate and create programs to provide support to vulnerable populations. She has taken the time back in school to explore many areas of public health and is currently interning at the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene assisting with research around foodborne diseases as well as working as a Researcher Assistant with the NYU EMPOWER lab, focusing on women who have been victims of sexual trafficking and abuse. After her fellowship, Amy wrote: "This fellowship was not always easy but 'easy' things don't help you learn or push yourself. Over the course of the summer I've learned a lot about myself personally and professionally and I will take those lessons with me for the rest of me life."

11 Oct

“How was Uganda?” Reflecting back on summer

I’ve been back in the US for over a month now and I’ve been trying to find a way to wrap my head around expressing my feelings about my final weeks as well as the fellowship overall. It’s been an intense experience with a steep learning curve and although I’m happy to be back home […]

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Posted Oct 11, 2016

08 Aug

Training the trainers: bringing inclusive trainings to schools

Last week was a busy one where we accomplished teacher trainings around inclusion in two different schools. It was by far my favorite part of the fellowship thus far for a couple different reasons. The first is that I’m a big believer in communication being a catalyst for change. It’s amazing the damage that misconceptions […]

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Posted Aug 08, 2016

26 Jul

Microblog & Podcast: The Importance of Hearing

This WASH project I have been working on and blogging about is incredibly important. However, while I am here at the GDPU I want to use my time to shed light on other issues surrounding disabilities. After visiting 15 schools I have been struck by the amount of children I have seen enrolled in schools […]

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Posted Jul 26, 2016

24 Jul

“In our community, disabilities are seen as a curse”

While my time at the GDPU is winding down, Patrick and I have been planning the schedule and goals of our next few weeks. One thing that has become clear to me during this time is that the issue of ensuring children with disabilities get a quality education is a complex one. I came here […]

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Posted Jul 24, 2016

17 Jul

Ooooh I’m halfway there…

I’m at the halfway point of this fellowship and so far I’ve been reluctant to make these blogs too personal because I really want to put the focus on the GDPU and the people of Gulu. However, this week has been one of preparation for new activities and I’ve had a lot of time to […]

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Posted Jul 17, 2016

10 Jul

A Van and a New Plan

What a difference a week makes! Last week Patrick and I were at a crossroad with  what to do for our summer project due to the fact that many schools in the Gulu Municipality seemed to be making improvements and making their schools more accessible. Our toilet didn’t seem to be needed in these schools […]

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Posted Jul 10, 2016

27 Jun

Ch ch ch changes…facing the strange, strain and making adjustments

This past week has presented itself with some challenges for me. I’ve been adjusting to this new environment while still dealing with life that is waiting for me in the US in addition to the work here having a bit of a monkey wrench thrown into the mix. More on that in a bit,  but […]

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Posted Jun 27, 2016

19 Jun

Acholi culture, Alan Jackson and All About Toilets

I’ve finished up my first week at the GDPU and yesterday marked one week in Gulu. Fortunately there haven’t been anymore gunshots since last Sunday but I’m continuing to be cautious and listen to what is going on around me. Like any first week at a new job, I’ve had to get acclimated to my […]

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Posted Jun 19, 2016

14 Jun

Violence and Humanity: The U.S and Uganda

I was reluctant to write about this, especially for my first post in Uganda  because I don’t want to bring the wrong message across about Gulu or the work I am doing here.  While reading this please keep in mind that I am safe and do not take this as a testament to daily life […]

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Posted Jun 14, 2016

27 May

Lesson 1: Shut up and listen

I am wrapping up this week of orientation with The Advocacy Project as a visitor in Washington DC. It was less than a week ago that I arrived as a New Yorker in a city that, although smaller than Manhattan, was unfamiliar to me. While being somewhat intimidated by using public transportation and unsure how […]

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Posted May 27, 2016





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