Christina Fetterhoff

Christina Fetterhoff (Center for Economic and Social Rights, Ecuador): Christina was involved with human rights in Latin America long before she undertook her AP fellowship. She lived and studied for six months in Buenos Aires, Argentina, where she researched the role of Argentine human rights organizations during the 1976-1982 military dictatorship. She also traveled to Cuba as a delegate for MADRE, a women’s rights and humanitarian aid organization. Christina graduated from Bryn Mawr College in 2003 with a B.A. in Political Science. At the time of her fellowship, she was studying for an M.A. in Latin American Studies through Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service.

The Solidarity Bridge

17 Aug

I was supposed to fly home today. This was supposed to be the end of my time in Ecuador-slightly over two months. However, about a month ago I changed my ticket and will now be arriving in DC at the beginning of September. I just cannot get enough of Ecuador.

Today does mark the end of one part of my adventure here, however. It’s my last day of work at CDES. It had to be, or else there would be no end, because there really is no end to the work that CDES does-or to the work that I hope to continue to do. But, in terms of my internship for AP and the construction of a partnership between AP and CDES, I have finished what I set out to do-hopefully.

I say “hopefully” because only time will tell whether or not the foundations for a productive partnership will actually stand. Will the base that I tried to put down survive the rigors of the NGO world, or will it crumble-either slowly or quickly-under the weight of expectation and the chaos which is many times the reality of human rights advocacy?

Yes, there are strong pillars on each end-CDES and AP-but will the bridge fall down? This is my main concern as I sit here reviewing my summer’s worth of work. I have learned so much both from working with CDES and simply living in Ecuador for 2 months-many things I have found inspiring, like the way the sun glints off the snow of Cotopaxi Volcano, the generosity of the people that I have met, and of course, the dedication of the social justice movement here. Many things have also left small scars on my heart, like the sight of a child in an intersection doing tricks with fire to earn a couple of cents.

I leave my job at CDES even more convinced that this is the type of work that I want to do, but also with a greater realization of the challenges that we are all facing-not just the overwhelming number of people living in poverty, but also the tedious everyday tasks that keep us from communicating both failures and successes with each other. Solidarity grows from communication and I hope that CDES will continue to communicate with AP so that the network of solidarity for the underprivileged people of Ecuador can continue to grow.

Posted By Christina Fetterhoff

Posted Aug 17th, 2004

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