This is the time where everyone reminisces on what happened in 2012.  I would say 2011 and 2012 are years that changed my life and made me realize what I really want to do in life and what I really value. 

But for for my year in review this year these things stood out….

I traveled to Zanzibar, Kenya, Rwanda, Uganda, a Hurricane on the East Coast and am heading out to New Orleans and Nashville for New Years Eve. 

I lived in Tanzania and fell in love with the idea of putting my education degrees to good use working in Educational Development, and learned a lot about what people need and do not need in life to be happy.

EdPowerment grew to a strong credible organization and is now searching for grant funding.

I have returned to America, and although the reverse cultural shock has been hard, I have managed to readjust most days.  

I have reconnected with family and friends and have made it a point to spend as much time with people I love as I can.

With EdPowerment’s Autism Connects Tanzania program we hosted 4 amazing workshops, built a playground for students with disabilities, helped fund a center dedicated to helping kids with autism, brought in professionals in the field to meet with Tanzanians about autism, and helped fight a stigma that keeps many children and families locked in their homes. 

With Kilimaehwa Educational Center, we finished an amazing afterschool group, painted a mural, hosted a few sports days, and fell in love with the idea of empowering young people through connecting them to community members.

Our Sponsorship program grew from 18 kids to 30 kids.  4 students are now in University studying education, medicine, law, and computer technology and 6 just graduated high school and are awaiting their exam results.

I have maintained my blog and gotten an entry published in a woman’s travel magazine and am starting a possible draft of a travel novel.  (Goal for 2013- We will see)

I have rejoined my Interact students and volunteered at a local food pantry with them and helped them raise money and food for their local community.

My goals for 2013….

-Find grant money to help allow EdPowerment to continue doing educational development work

-Travel back to Tanzania for two months to host more ACT conferences and help facilitate the work we do there though EdPowerment

-Host an amazing EdPowerment fundraising campaign in March & April with various activities people can participate in

-Pay off all my credit card debt and debt I owe to individuals

-Become more emotionally and physically healthy

-Travel to visit friends in Los Angeles, Portugal and Djibouti

-Write a draft of a travel novel about my experiences visiting over 33 countries

-Spend as much time with my family and friends as possible

After all of the negative things happening in the world, sometimes we have to look at our own lives and the things we can control to remember life can pretty good.  Try to spend this week  thinking about the amazing things that have happened in your life and make some goals for 2013 and plans of how to accomplish them.  Don’t just make new years resolutions to work on for a few weeks and forget about.  Make actual goals and plans to make them happen.

After having the life I thought I wanted fall apart, making goals for change and for new adventure helped me get through it.  And looking back my life now is so much better than it was before this huge change happened.  So give it a try.  What do you want to do next year, where do you want to go, and how do you plan on getting there.  


Albert Einstein once said, “Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow.  The important thing is not to stop questioning.” 

I think he had a pretty good point.  (:

Happy New Years!

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