One of my focuses today is to seriously contribute to making PEI, my beloved PEI, a modern, forward thinking, prosperous and vibrant place. I didn’t always have this focus, the inspiration came to me in a land, far, far away.
In 2008, I lived in Tajikistan, in Central Asia. A place so far flung, that 90% of people I talk to didn’t know it existed… and it’s a country! I went there to work in international development, thinking that to “contribute” you had to be something of an evangelist, a missionary, exile yourself and live amongst the poorest of the poor. Tajikistan is one of the 10 most food impoverished nations of the world. And seeing as they speak Russian, (most of them do), it was the perfect fit for the beginning of my international development career.
It was after seeing the dysfunctions, distortions and disconcerting inner workings of “international development” that I had a realization, an epiphany even: this is not my place, my place is home! I can’t become a champion here, nor am that relevant. Yes, my place is home. My mission now is to ensure PEI succeeds. At that point, I had been away for 8 years. Now it’s really time to ramp it up. I’m excited at the projects I have lined up to make PEI more resilient, and to do it together, as a community. I think there’s a bright future for PEI, most notably because there are many people like me who love and cherish PEI so much, that they are willing to come home, with a pay cut, but to do what they love, on their Island.
This is a magical place, and I believe in magical things happening here in the next few years and decades. #ThrivePEI