Coming from different countries and diverse backgrounds, three individuals joined on a remarkable journey through the 2023 Goldin Global Fellowship.

In this piece, Jill Langhus-Griffin from Arizona, U.S., Hajra Hussein from Mchinji, Malawi, and Kurt Isaacs from Johannesburg, South Africa, share their experience with the fellowship and the utilization of the GATHER platform.

They found that despite differences, going together along this path instilled in them a sense of unity and ignited a willingness to work towards the positive changes needed in their respective communities.

Jill’s Perspective

For Jill, this experience surpassed her expectations in every way.

“This fellowship has been a wonderful experience so far, even better than I had anticipated. I love connecting with like-minded, peace-focused humanitarians who are on the same page as me, are forward-thinking, solution-oriented, and optimistic about the future.” she says.

The course content resonates with her existing beliefs while pushing her to new heights.

“The content in the course is helping me to grow and learn even more personally and professionally. I also really appreciate the program’s collaborative tone and overarching goal.” concludes Jill, the founder of Liluye, a global collaborative community focusing on prevention, economic empowerment, and healing of trafficking survivors.

Kurt’s Perspective

Kurt, a certified Life coach with over 20 years of therapeutic experience in the counseling and education-management space, was immersed in a welcoming sea of knowledge and motivation within the GATHER Program.

“Goldin Global Fellowship and the GATHER platform are really welcoming and inclusive. The program is well thought through and structured. It is littered with titbits of knowledge and motivational material that challenge and shape my thinking.”

Kurt adds that in this environment, learning happens organically.

“I have found the one-on-one conversations most inspiring. As the weeks progressed, the exchanges began moving towards collaboration. This excites me, ” says Kurt, cheering on the possibilities and visions this program brings.

Hajra’s Perspective

For Hajra, GATHER is synonymous with effective communication, cooperation, and diversity.

“GATHER is helping me to communicate, collaborate, and feel more connected in a persistent space that reflects me to create a unique team with different people from different countries.” she says.

She highlights that this also encourages participation to achieve overall satisfaction.

Goldin Global Fellowship Building Global Connections

Jill, Kurt, and Hajra are among the outstanding 2023 Goldin Global Fellows who live and work in Albania, Bangladesh, Burundi, Cameroon, Ethiopia, Haiti, India, Kosovo, Malawi, Mali, Nepal, Nigeria, the Philippines, Senegal, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, the United States and Zimbabwe.

We are already witnessing the global marks and ties this diversity of fellows brings to communities, as Jill and the other fellow Tarun Masapeta from Hyderabad in India met in person in Phoenix to discuss the possibility of a partnership between their two organizations (@liluyespirit and @projecteifl) to create a financial literacy program for trafficking survivors in the U.S., with a plan to tailor it to other areas of the world who could benefit from this training.

For this, Jill shares:

“I plan on working together to co-create a financial literacy program for trafficking survivors in the future with one of my fellows, Tarun, who runs EIFL, an organization that focuses on educating and empowering marginalized groups. I am very much looking forward to seeing this program come to fruition and impacting and empowering many women who need this information to grow, thrive, and reintegrate into society.”

As the fellows shared their impressions, it was evident that the power of collaboration and the potential for positive change worldwide is only strengthened by safe spaces, such as GATHER- which remains an inspiring place for others who seek out opportunities and networks for driving change in their community from within.

For this, Yusuph Masanja, Co-Facilitator of the Global Fellows Program, who himself went through this journey, highlights that this cohort represents 20 grassroots leaders from 19 countries.

“Their diverse backgrounds, unique talents and gifts, and commitment to making progress in their communities inspire hope for our shared future. Excited to see where our learning journey takes us together.”