“Arriving at meaningful solutions is an inevitably slow and arduous process. Nonetheless, what I saw was: better is possible. It does not take genius. It takes diligence, it takes moral clarity. It takes ingenuity. And above all it takes a willingness to try.”Atul Gawande
“Better,” by Dr. Atul Gawande, is an inspirational account which challenges every individual, doctor or not, to not only do better, but ultimately be better. I truly believe these words have changed my life. It has been many years since I last read his words and this very message, to strive for better, still resonates with me each day. Quite frankly, it’s the reason I sit here today typing this post.
After a variety of roles within the healthcare and pharmaceutical industries, reading numerous motivational books, such as “Better”, as well as intense soul searching, I’ve come to the realization that my passion lies in helping others become the best version of themselves. By helping others to achieve their greatest potential, by default, I become a better version of myself. I have been blessed with an abundance in my life that I sincerely believe must be used for good. Hopefully, by doing just that, I can make the world a bit better than the way I have originally found it. My hope for you, my dear reader is that you may find ways to “become better” in whatever form that may be for you. No matter how big or small, may this one and only life change you for good.
For myself, that change came in a rather large package: an opportunity to be matched with a nonprofit organization for a six-month time frame. Otherwise, known as Pulse, this partnership amongst many different NGOs worldwide, is GSK’s skills-based volunteering initiative. With this unique opportunity in front of me, I had no doubt that my journey to becoming better was just beginning.
After being matched with Partners in Health in Sierra Leone back in April, I knew my life would forever be changed. Little did I know that the change would come so quickly.
It’s been four days since I’ve started with the team here in Freetown and I have never felt more welcomed in all my life. From warm smiles and bear hug embraces to signs on the doorway and cake cutting ceremonies, I’ve felt as though I’ve left my GSK family only to visit my PIH family across the globe. There is a sense of family here, a feeling of connectedness; one I was sure I would miss as my teammates and I are all so close back home. No matter where we all have come from in the world, we each have been brought to PIH Sierra Leone by a common cause: to build back better.
As I begin to settle in and grasp the work that PIH is doing, one characteristic shines through for the people here: their resiliency. From tragedy to tragedy, they have prevailed. On our rainiest of drives to Kono yesterday, a beautiful sign reminds me of the people of Sierra Leone: an unwavering storm with beauty and warmth that conquers in the end. 🌈