To enable one to develop a better sense of social responsibility and community engagement. Tool Description: In recent years, there has been astonishing growth in international programming that embeds service-learning or some form of community engagement. The planned service-learning program should be focus of discussion. Alternatively, a sample case study has been provided.

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TBB is a gap year program committed to changing learning in to action. This reflection stems from a group discussion held during her gap year. At first I was simply numb to protect myself from the existential crisis that I feared would come upon further reflection. I have to admit, it fazed me. I have far too many of them coming at me much too quickly.

Seriously, who have I helped on this trip? Ecuador: I replanted trees for farmers who had destroyed them in the first place, and would probably one of them already did while we were there destroy them again. India: I begged and pleaded to go to work every day, to pick 50 cents worth of cotton for farmers who were simply indulging a silly girl. And if I think of all the plane fare spent on this trip and what it could have done if it had simply been donated…sometimes my resolution truly wavers.

During orientation I was introduced to the idea of service learning versus actual community service. Then I arrived in India. I was there to study sustainable agriculture. However, all I could focus on were the injustices towards women. Now I do. I was born with so much extra anger and passion, and I finally know where I can productively channel it. So there is no doubt in my mind that this year was not wasted. It was the best-used year of my life. And I am not ridiculously proud of myself.

But if I can follow the career path that this trip inspired me to follow, I can make it up to the world. I truly believe I can. I can start studying Hindi in college, I can spend years instead of months in India, and I can learn to understand the culture enough to help. To convince me on this point, Illich would have to provide further and more specific examples. But at least I have direction now where I had none before.


Thoughts on “To Hell With Good Intentions” by Ivan Illich

Toynbee , a subject to which he would return in his later years. While working on his doctorate, he returned to Italy where he studied theology and philosophy at the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome , as he wanted to become a Catholic priest. He was ordained in In , he traveled throughout South America on foot and by bus. The bishops also started their own rival Catholic party.


Lest Best Intentions become the Enemy of the Good

He basically tells them they are not wanted, that they are insulting the host country they are trying to help, and could never dream of reaching the audience they intended to. Programs that seek to "better" developing countries are counterproductive. So, to hell with good intentions, stay home. Ivan, in my defense, I have no good intentions.

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