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Let Hope Shape the Future

By Hoore Jannat

Disclaimer: The views are those of the author's alone and do not represent the views of UNA-Canada.

When I began my 6-month internship with the United Nations Association in Canada’s (UNAC) International Youth Internship Programme (IYIP), I could not contain my excitement. It is a particularly surreal experience for me, from being considered an at-risk youth─ as I have lived most of my life in Regent Park, Canada’s oldest and largest social housing project─ to now being in a position where I can help others on a global scale working for the largest humanitarian organization in the world.

JPC Hoore is working to support her office in their aims to achieve the goals of SDGs 17 & 2

As a South-South Cooperation and Partnerships Junior Professional Consultant with the World Food Programme (WFP) Zimbabwe Country Office, I have the incredible opportunity to work in the External Relations Unit to advance donor relations and partnerships. I also get to apply what I am currently learning in my Master of Information Systems and Design program to improve the standard operating procedures of our team’s information management system. My team contributes to supporting the most vulnerable populations, including refugees, in Zimbabwe to end world hunger.

For many of us who aspire to disrupt the status quo and help the most vulnerable in our local and global communities, it can sometimes feel like our actions are never enough. It is easy to become disenchanted with the world when we are born into spaces that were not created to hold us. It is easy to feel as though our efforts are in vain when systemic barriers run so deep it is difficult to pull out the roots. Despite this, it is a revolutionary act to love and care deeply for others and tend to our gardens anyway to continue cultivating hope. It is what connects us across imagined borders oceans away. I am constantly reminded of this from the strength and solidarity of marginalized communities around the world and with the work that I do. I am immensely grateful to be surrounded by such compassionate and driven colleagues here in Canada and abroad at the WFP Zimbabwe Country Office.

I recently visited Montreal to meet some of the other Junior Professional Consultants working in UN Agency offices around the world. I came back home to Toronto with a full heart feeling beyond inspired to be part of such an extraordinary cohort filled with so many dreamers of a more just world.

Hoore with some members of the 5th IYIP cohort in Montréal

I often think about when Howard Zinn said, “To be hopeful in bad times is not just foolishly romantic. It is based on the fact that human history is a history not only of cruelty, but also of compassion, sacrifice, courage, kindness…The future is an infinite succession of presents, and to live now as we think human beings should live, in defiance of all that is bad around us, is itself a marvelous victory.” I am hopeful that with the skills I gain from my experience as a Junior Professional Consultant, I will make significant strides in addressing global challenges, fighting for human rights, and creating a more equitable and beautiful world.


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