Name: Janikah Brice
School: Brandeis University
Class Year: Freshman
When and how did you get involved with YSI?
I got involved with YSI last semester through a friend of mine, Herlyne Das, who is also the president of the YSI’s eboard on campus. As soon as Herlyne and I connected, she realized that I was Haitian as well and told me about YSI. She invited me to join the club and come to the meetings.
Which expeditions have you gone on?
I went on the 2016 winter expedition.
What are your future plans with us?
In the future, I plan on growing with YSI--personally and professionally. I share many of the same beliefs and goals that the organization is committed to achieving. YSI embodies so many of the same things that I want to do in my future--from the healthcare work they are doing and to the location in which the work is being done--so I believe this is the organization for me to be with. YSI is a fairly new organization, so therefore there is a lot of room for growth. Not only do I want to stick around to see future plans put into action, but I also want to be a part of making them happen.
What is your favorite memory from your trip to Haiti?
My favorite memory from the trip was simply being able to finally visit the island where my family is from. I heard so much about Haiti growing up, but I never had the opportunity to see it firsthand. I also really enjoyed how the history of the island is clearly honored throughout Haitian communities. I loved every moment I was there and took in every little detail of the things around me. I was truly a dream come true.
What would you say to somebody who is unsure whether or not YSI is right for them?
If somebody was unsure about YSI, I would tell them that they should take a look at the website, the Facebook page, or simply ask around about what they've heard about the organization. YSI is an organization all its own. Their core values of responsible aid, sustainable empowerment, local leadership, and how all their operations are research-based is inspiring and really makes a difference. Most importantly, YSI’s goal isn't to just donate to an area and move on--it’s to help build-up communities so they can thrive on their own. If this approach speaks to you and represents the ways in which you want to serve, YSI is perfect for you.