Monday, June 4, 2012

I'm here for justice.

“Injustice anywhere is injustice everywhere,” was said with passion and vigor by Rebecca Cokley, the Director of Priority Placement at the Presidential Personnel Office of the White House.
It was the last day of the week-long orientation of the American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD) Summer Internship Program, and overwhelmed with gratitude, I knew that I was meant to be there. For me, it is no longer just about disability rights, it is about the intersectionality of disability and other marginalized communities. Throughout the week, I realized that advocates, such as my fellow interns and I, can use this summer to collaborate and build unity within our community as well as build bridges with other social justice communities. As Cokley concluded, chills ran down my spine and my eyes held back tears. I was then empowered that I could play an active role to create change; not just for individuals with disabilities but for all individuals who are marginalized based on human diversity and experience.

My name is Allie Cannington and I am thankful and honored to be a member of the 2012 AAPD Summer Internship Program. It is with my devotion to connecting disability to other minority populations, that I will be interning at the US Agency for International Development in the Office of the Senior Coordinator for Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment. Having lived in Washington DC for two years, I am now a rising junior undergraduate at American University and consider the district my second home. Yet, living at George Washington University, in the middle of the city, is a brand new and exciting adventure. I can feel the energy of the DC culture, as professionals from all parts of the capital, whether federal agencies, the hill, for profit or nonprofit sectors, pace quickly down the streets with a clear purpose. I can feel the passion for political and social action, with all of the festivals and free events that this city offers. And lastly, I can sense the knowledge and spirit of all of the disability rights leaders impacting this city, the US, and the world, as AAPD connected the interns with phenomenal and historical social changers.

Being one of the youngest students in the program, I am overwhelmed with the opportunity to learn from all the other interns around me. Whether they are receiving their masters, Phds or exploring the world, I look forward to creating great relationships that will hopefully foster great change.

Thank you, AAPD, for this incredible opportunity to explore Washington DC, social justice, disability and how I can fit into it all.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Commenters must avoid profanity, harsh language and disparaging remarks on the basis of gender, race, class, ethnicity, national origin, religion, sexual orientation or disability. All comments to the blog are moderated by AAPD, and can be subject to removal at any time.

Please use the comments section to engage in the ongoing dialogue between our program funders, current and former interns, our colleagues, and the broader disability community, and to respond to intern posts that intrigue you, to share your own stories, or to simply express your gratitude for being allowed into the world of our summer interns.