It is hard to believe that it is my last week as an intern at the CCAO. After being here for two months, it is difficult to write in short form just how much I have learned and taken away from this experience. Not only have I had the opportunity to grow in my knowledge of the political process, legislation, and advocacy work; but I have grown in my faith and my connection to Creation.
It has been an eventful summer for hunger issues and climate change. After working on and monitoring the Farm Bill, which gives so many of our most vulnerable brothers and sisters access to nutritious food and contains vital conservation policies, I realize the importance of this legislation and am excited to continue to work for faithful, sustainable food procurement. After President Obama’s Climate Change Plan was released, I rejoiced in the potential for change that will protect Creation. However, I realize that there are still going to be many areas of improvement on the road ahead.
At the CCAO, internships go beyond the bare-minimum of “intern work,” but challenge us to step out of our comfort zone, right into the hustle and bustle of D.C. life. For instance, never did I think I would be sent to represent the CCAO at briefings, working group meetings, and various events on my own. Although it was sometimes intimidating to sit in a room with such amazing, experienced advocates who practice various faith traditions, this was the most rewarding part of my internship experience.
There are no words to express my gratitude to the people I have met, the Columbans I have encountered who have shared their stories, and the opportunity to learn how to be an advocate for people around the world.