Rosza Brown '11

  • Rosza Brown '11Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration

  • Worked as an International Business and Community Development Advisor for the Peace Corps in Bobeica, Moldova

  • Participated in a Campus Ministries mission trip to Mexico

As a member of the Peace Corps, Rosza Brown ’11 has empowered an entire community in the small, Eastern European nation of Moldova and changed the way the government provides disability services for one rural village. Her passion for social activism began with a McKendree mission trip and continues today as she seeks to be a voice for the voiceless.


What prompted you to join the Peace Corps and help others around the world?


I became interested when I went on my first mission trip to Mexico in 2008. I went with Campus Ministries at McKendree and just traveling abroad and having the opportunity to see a new way of living, experience new food, and still have the ability to give to others opened my eyes to being a global citizen.

My volunteer supervisor Dr. Lyn Huxford encouraged me to join the Peace Corps. I was very active with the Center for Community Service and she was well aware of my love for traveling and helping others. Therefore I applied, got accepted, packed my bags, and started an adventure of a lifetime.


What was it like working in the small, Eastern European country of Moldova?


Working in a small village in Moldova had its challenges and great moments. I moved into my own house my second year of service and experienced life on my own without running water and using wood to heat my house. It was a very humbling experience and helped me to appreciate the small things we take for granted even more.


What were some of the things you did in your two years of service with the Peace Corps?


My partner and I facilitated advocacy training for the disabled community to help them learn their rights. We taught them how to voice their concerns to their local government, educated them on discrimination, and taught them how to tell their story so others could better understand their day-to-day life in Moldova. We had their stories featured on the radio, news, and in the newspaper. The local government was so moved that they wanted to start construction on more ramps so that more stores, pharmacies, and banks could be accessible to those with disabilities.

We also continued to encourage our volunteer club to remain active in the community and put on activities and events for the youth.  In addition to this, I taught English to high school and elementary students.

Due to our NGO (non-governmental organization) being so active in the community, we were recognized at the National Moldovan Volunteer Festival and received third place for being the most active NGO in a rural area. This was such a big accomplishment for the organization and our local volunteer club!


What do you think we can do in the United States to be good global citizens?


One thing we can do is to be informed. It is very important for us to be educated on what’s going on in other countries socially, economically, and politically. Then we can start having conversations with people of different nationalities to see how we can help with these topics.

Another thing we can do it travel. We take for granted the power of a U.S. Passport. We have the ability to travel almost effortlessly, and I don’t feel we do it enough. When we travel, we get a better understanding of different cultures, beliefs, and morals.


 


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