Olivia

I chose to do my placement at Maryhill Integration Network because I was once a volunteer and a member of the Board with the organisation.
I was studying BA Community Development, which is a 4 year degree course. My placement with MIN (from September 2018 – April 2019), was with the women’s group.
The majority of my time on placement was spent on networking, and outreach work to promote community engagement for New Scots, as well as researching information to promote learning within and influencing integration for the women, linking up the organisation to partner with other agencies, organisations in their local community.
The reason for doing this, was to provide information which was helpful to support the women to make better decisions and access the right resources.
The most interesting journey with the placement, was about building friendships, and empowering women to use their voice – as learning from my own experiences – to push for social justice. 
I am still overwhelmed with the emotions that I could have done a lot with women’s group, looking back now, with more time and more funding. However, by encouraging self-esteem for members of the group, I helped them to continue to build confidence, this was my highest priority to see them stand independently for themselves and support others to challenge issues that affect them or demoralise their strength. 

Maryhill Integration Network has always been a place or home to me, meaning that my confidence to participate and learn from all the project which I’d taken part in, had been done with a grateful human soul; working positively without feeling different. My future goals within my academic career, involve learning more about the ways we can challenge the policies that racially discriminate, disempower women voices. As Martin Lurther King wrote, “the bank of justice is bankrupt”, I believe with a collective voice and taking action, the bank of justice can be saved.”