- Your picture is on Humanitarians of Tinder.
- Your blog is filled with photos of children of different ethnicities.
- Nicholas Kristof is your favourite journalist.
- You take photos of children in refugee camps and then post them on Facebook with the caption “So much cuteness!”
- You’ve read Geldof in Africa at least 3 times.
- You just can’t believe that poor people who have nothing can laugh, create music, hold ceremonies or have culture of any kind.
- You keep talking about how passionate you are and how you want to make a difference.
- Your response to logistical and program dilemmas is “WWJD?”
- You’re getting ready for a volunteer trip that has matching T-shirts.
- You call the person who interviewed you every other day to follow up, because your mom says it’ll show them you’re persistent.
- You’re starting your own NGO.
- You just want to be Meryl Streep in Out of Africa.
- Or Angelina Jolie in Beyond Borders.
- You’ve been telling friends and family that Africa has always been calling you.
- You don’t drink.
- You think the solution to refugees and displaced peoples is to create a new nation.
- You also think creating a new nation to make your daughter a princess is totally reasonable.
- You believe innovation is the way forward.
- Disaster response gives you that tingling feeling downstairs.
- You think you’d look cool in some traditional African clothing.
- All your other clothes are cargo pants and fishing vests.
- You think Africa is a country.
- You’re sure the Central African Republic is not a real country.
- You know you’ll never became jaded and cynical like those experienced aid workers.
- You loved KONY2012.
- You want to volunteer overseas to “find yourself.”
- You’ve given away your old crap because, you know, poor people need anything they can get.
- Your favourite book about aid is Emergency Sex.
- Your idea of aid work is passing out candy and toys to cute children.
- You swear you’ll never date a co-worker.
- You went to Haiti or Nepal right after the earthquake without a job.
- You’re dedicated to “working yourself out of a job.”
- Once a year, you walk around barefoot to raise awareness of shoelessness.
- You don’t live in Nairobi–you’re just based there.
- You’ve ever donated an old bra or pair of socks or underwear.
- Or made a dress out of a pillowcase and sent it to Africa.
- You tend to follow all the rules.
- You think all expats are equal. (They’re not. Aid workers are better.)
- You think it’s adorable how everything stops when white people visit a local school.
- You believe the staff at HQ actually know what’s going on.
- You consider yourself the voice of the voiceless.
- You proclaim an obsession with things you have no connection to–certain countries, NGOs, social issues.
- You have no preference between Sachs and Easterly.
- You think randomised controlled trials are a way to figure out what works in development.
- You think aid workers are “just such nice people.”
- You only wear TOMS.
- You’re there to empower the people.
- You really hope a villager you met will name their child after you.
- You’re willing to speak up when your per diem is just too high.
- You don’t know what guava leaves are used for.
- You want to give people a hand-up–because they are unable to stand for themselves.
- You don’t read WhyDev very often.
Featured image shows sign #53: nails painted with TOMS logos. Photo by Elizabeth Hudy.
Before he left for greener pastures, Laurie Phillips contributed to this post.
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The WhyDev writing team consists of Brendan, Megan, Zoe and Clemency. Check out more about the team on the "About Us" page.
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