MEDA Blog - Stories from the Field

#MEDACon16: A Convention to Remember

MEDA’s 2016 Convention, Business as a Calling: Women Changing the World, wrapped up just about two weeks ago. We’re not over the excitement quite yet, so we’re sharing some of our favorite moments from #MEDACon16 with you!
UnknownMEDA supporters take a river barge through downtown San Antonio
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Wisdom from Wally: 19 Tips for a Fulfilling Life

Wally Kroeker is the editor of The Marketplace magazine, a bi-monthly MEDA publication. He recently passed the 30 year milestone as an employee of MEDA.

My grandson turned 16 this year and some members of my family invited me to pass on to him some of the secrets of my, uh, success.

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Announcing: 10 Young Women Changing the World

Over the last two years MEDA’s 20 under 35: Young Professionals Changing the World Initiative has recognized 40 young professionals under the age of 35 for their demonstrated commitment to faith, service and an entrepreneurial spirit. We've had the opportunity to honor people like Chris Steingart, a web designer from Kitchener, ON, who finds his foundation for business in Mennonite faith values. Economist Kaylie Tiessen was recognized in 2015 for her dedication to improving lives through economic justice and growth.

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All the joy, none of the hassle: Monthly Giving.

When you think about supporting your favorite charitable organization, you probably think about how much you want to give. Should you give $100? $200? You might give your gift online, give cash at an event or snail-mail a check. Have you ever thought about the amount of effort that takes? Do you wish there was an easier way to do it?

Kaylie Tiessen, a recent 20 Under 35: Young Professionals Changing the World award recipient, supports MEDA in a way that fits her busy lifestyle. By enrolling in the monthly giving program at MEDA, Kaylie gives to MEDA on a regular basis and saves time and money.
DSC8547Kaylie Tiessen"As an organization, MEDA stands above the rest. MEDA has the most principled, sound and mission-oriented approach to development,” says Tiessen. “I'm very busy, and giving is very important to me. Giving has to fit into my life schedule, and that's why I support MEDA monthly through recurring automatic gifts."

MEDA’s monthly giving program can help with monthly budgeting and environmental sustainability. Rather than making a gift once a year, a monthly gift lets you choose an amount you’re comfortable with, and it’s easy to plan ahead. We’ll send you fewer mailings, which is environmentally friendly.

Monthly giving is effortless: Automatic withdrawal means you don’t have to write a check or go online every time you want to make a gift. Your impact is maximized when we can count on your gift. To top it all off, you can feel great because you’ve made a life-changing difference every month.

Join us in our mission to create business solutions to poverty today! Enroll in our monthly giving program here. Don’t hesitate to reach out to Sarah French, coordinator, donor relations, if you have any questions about enrollment.

Kaylie Tiessen is an economist working as a national research representative at UNIFOR. She was recently featured in the United Church Canada's UCObserver.
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Welcoming the 2014 MEDA Interns

b2ap3_thumbnail_IMG_8122edited.jpgFor the past 17 years, MEDA has sent over 110 young professionals in 20 countries around the world to give them the opportunity to gain experience in the field and discover their career interests.

This fall 4 new interns embark on a 6-month international development Internship. The interns will be heading to Ethiopia and Ghana helping MEDA fulfill its overall mission of creating business solutions to poverty for families around the world.

Check back on this blog frequently to stay tuned as the 4 interns uncover unique experiences, gain new skills and change lives. Bringing different skills and life experiences to their position will no doubt make for varying perspectives on the realities of their internship and of international development as a whole.

Now let's meet the 2014 cohort of MEDA Interns...

Ethiopia
EDGET (Ethiopians Driving Growth through Entrepreneurship and Trade)
Stephanie Puras - Communication and Program Support Intern
E-FACE (Ethiopians Fighting Against Child Exploitation)
Clara Yoon - Communication and Program Support Intern

Ghana
GROW (Greater Rural Opportunities for Women)
Kevin Linklater - Program Support/ Enterprise Development Intern
Clarissa Heger- Communications Intern

Visit MEDA Internships for more information on our internship program and to read the biographies of the 2014 interns.

We encourage you to keep coming back to this blog to stay informed on the latest news about the interns's field experiences. Whether you're someone who knows one of the interns personally or someone who just discovered this blog, we hope you will find some truthful insight into the international development world and begin to connect with the people behind this posts. If you don't get the opportunity to travel to these places yourself to explore the food, culture and stories of our clients, let these interns' personal tales serve as a window to MEDA's work in the field.

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Safe Travels to the 2013 MEDA Interns!

b2ap3_thumbnail_2013-Interns---Candid-Hortizontal-PS.gifFor the past 16 years, MEDA has sent over 100 young professionals in total to 20 countries around the world to give them the opportunity to gain experience in the field and discover their career interests.

This summer, 14 new interns visted MEDA head offices for a week-long orientation to learn about the organization and meet staff members before they embark on their 6-month international development internships. While not all of the interns will be in the same country or working on the same project, each of them will be helping MEDA fulfill its overall mission of creating business solutions to poverty for families around the world.

Check back on this blog regularly to read their stories about how they are building new skills, uncovering unique experiences and changing the lives of those around them. Bringing different skills and life experiences to their position will no doubt make for varying perspectives on the realities of their internship and of international development as a whole.

Let us now introduce the 2013 cohort of MEDA Interns...

Ethiopia
EDGET (Ethiopians Driving Growth through Entrepreneurship and Trade)
Emma Harris – Rural Microfinance Intern
Shaunet Lewinson – Business Development Advisor

Ghana
GROW (Greater Rural Opportunities for Women)
Daniel Penner – Communications/Impact Assessment Intern
Gillian Perera - Nutrition/Food Security Intern
Jessica Adach - Gender Intern

Morocco
YouthInvest
Jeelan Syed – Communication Development Intern
Sanae Elamrani – Impact Assessment Intern

Nicaragua
MiCredito & Techno-Links (Technology Links for Improved Access and Incomes)
Catherine Walker – Rural Microfinance Intern
Sarah French – Impact Assessment Intern

Peru

Techno-Links (Technology Links for Improved Access and Incomes)
Stefanie Santana – Value Chain Development Intern

Tanzania
TNVS (Tanzania National Voucher Scheme)
Curtis Shane – I.T. Development Intern
Mary Fehr – Impact Assessment Intern

United States
Ines Sawadogo – Project Coordinator Intern

Zambia

Techno-Links (Technology Links for Improved Access and Incomes)
Jared Worley – Rural Microfinance Intern

Visit MEDA Internships for more information on our internship program and to read the biographies of the 2013 interns.

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Social Media Saavy

b2ap3_thumbnail_Jaclyn-1.jpgEach year, MEDA hosts its annual convention, Business as a Calling. I had the opportunity to attend this year's events in Niagara Falls, Ontario from November 1-4, 2012. I was excited to learn more about MEDA, contribute to work behind-the-scenes, and meet some of our supporters.

I arrived with the rest of the Marketing team on October 31 to help with registration preparation and logistics. It was a great to be able to meet face-to-face the staff I had been corresponding and working on projects with.

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A Ploughman's Paradise

b2ap3_thumbnail_Jaclyn---Canada-1.jpgIn September I was given the opportunity to attend the 2012 International Plowing Match (IPM for short) in Roseville, Ontario. To be honest, I had never heard of the IPM until this experience so I was surprised about the crowd it gathered. Over 100,000 people (mainly farmers) visit this farming and agricultural expo of sorts each year, bringing together people over various competitions, displays, demonstrations, and food.

MEDA had a booth in a tent with other community organizations and we were just there to spread the world about who we are and the work we do, with a particular focus on our agriculture projects like Techno-Links, Farmer to Farmer, EDGET, Ukraine Horticulture Development Projects, GROW, and Cassava Seed Champions, amongst others.

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Introducing the 2012 MEDA Interns

Welcome to MEDA's Intern Blog!

This fall, 14 new interns joined MEDA to take part in an international development internship. Working in a variety of capacities and countries, each intern will be helping MEDA fulfill its mission of creating business solutions to poverty.

Over the next 6 months, you will read about our experiences, learn our stories, and discover with us what it is like working in international development overseas. All of us come from different backgrounds and have different life experiences; how we react and learn from our work experience will be different. Why we chose to apply for our MEDA internships is different, yet we all hope to grow from the opportunity ahead of us.

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