The end of the first week of work left me with many questions. It is not my first time working in a business environment, but it is my first time working with such a strong mission. When I got placed at the Detroit Food Academy I knew that I would have had the chance to have a small impact on the struggling youth of the city. But, in total honesty, by the end of the first week, I started questioning whether my presence was benefitting the community around me.
The days are the office are very fulfilling. At every instant I feel that I have something to do. Designing their new website, contacting potential clients, editing videos and working on their marketing strategy keeps me busy even after the mandatory 9 to 5. But is all of this work benefitting the youth? Am I doing what I came here to do, having an impact on the community? A week has passed and the work got more intense. After having had a chance to meet personally the people that are supported by DFA, everything seems a little more clear to me. Social entrepreneurship is about doing your part, not everybody’s part. The work that before I thought was not impactful enough, I now realize it is part of a broader network. A network of people like me, young and determined, that push themselves for goals less concrete than profit. It is true, I am not impacting the youth of Detroit, but my organization and many other non-profits are. Social entrepreneurship is not made for people who focus only on the small picture. I think, and hope, that at the end of this program we will be able to look back and realize that we are now part of something bigger than us.
If you are curious to see what DFA was up to this week, please check out this video!!