Hope and Heal Blog

  • October 31, 2022|

    Creating Sustainable Educational Outreach Campaigns

    Sustainable progress is the pursuit of social, environmental, and economic prosperity for our current generation and the rising generation. As I have been conducting research on Lake Bunyonyi, Uganda, I have uncovered the key to creating sustainable, culturally responsive, and equitable strategies that work on adopting the local language, respecting cultures, and cherishing the customs of communities. For instance, while coordinating and conducting stakeholder interviews, focus groups, and surveys, I noticed the participants frowning, fidgeting with their fingers, and desperately looking for an exit. It almost seemed like my questions were causing feelings of discomfort rather than consensus and a collaborative spirit. So I began to work with my team to answer the following questions:  How does our research project tap into people’s experiences and expertise? How do we adjust the language of the interview according to the respondents? After a few trials and tribulations, we began integrating culturally relevant phrases which are employed in local conversations. In turn, we began receiving stories and detailed encounters from the villagers as they were able to understand and answer our questions. Here are a few adjustments we made to our questionnaires:  Western Phrases (Culturally Disconnected Phrases) Local Terms (Culturally Relevant Phrases) Tuition School Fees Middle School or High School  Primary or Secondary School Studying Class Materials Revising Subjects At-home chores Grazing, Gardening, Collecting Water, and/or Molding Bricks COVID-19 Pandemic or Corona  The practice of eliciting detailed answers from respondents and securing their trust starts with adjusting the project’s language according to the... Countinue Reading>>
  • July 17, 2022|

    A Perspective from Abroad

    “No problem can be solved from the same level of consciousness that created it,” ~ Albert Einstein. The team at the Hope and Heal Fund recognizes the need to ascend into a new frame of thinking to solve gun violence. We have identified successful gun violence prevention and treatment strategies that focus on the power of conveying and building community-based capacity. To go above and beyond traditional prevention mechanisms, we are exploring cross-cultural conversations abroad. I am currently based in Lake Bunyonyi, located in southwestern Uganda, as a racial equity and education researcher for the Global Livingston Institute (GLI). GLI is a community-based research institute that develops strategic partnerships with a focus on education and social impact. In partnership with the Hope and Heal Fund, I will be collecting and conducting a series of interviews with parents, teachers, and community leaders to construct community development approaches with an eye on equity.  The “Do Something” Mentality When we witness a crisis situation or learn about a global dilemma, we are quick to react with a “do something” mentality. This notion creates an illusion that these thinkers have the ultimate answers, they know what is best for victims and survivors, and they eagerly insert their values and take charge of the situation. As a result, wounds seem to further deepen as the voices of residents, communities, and generations are overlooked as outsiders compromise local collaboration over self-driven reasons. This frame of thinking reacts to the situation. On the contrary, taking a step... Countinue Reading>>
  • August 10, 2021|

    The Means to Combat Gun Violence Are Within Our Grasp

    I am Diana Guardado, the Summer 2021 social media intern for the Hope and Heal Fund. Before I reflect on my new relationship with the gun violence movement, I would like to share a snapshot of my upbringing and activism work. Countinue Reading>>