Experiencing poverty a world away

A recent graduate of the Red Deer College Social Work program is putting her skills to the test as she embarks on a trip of a lifetime to help people in need.

A recent graduate of the Red Deer College Social Work program is putting her skills to the test as she embarks on a trip of a lifetime to help people in need.

Shelly Eckenswiller recently left for Ho Chi Minh,Vietnam to take part in a 10-week volunteer program through International Volunteer HQ, where she will spend time at a local reach out food centre and an orphanage.

Eckenswiller is a parent of a child with special needs and said it’s where her passion to help people began.

“I saw a lot of cracks in the system. I was driven to advocate for my daughter and throughout the process I realized there were so many people like her. There are people who are vulnerable and marginalized who need people to advocate for them,” said Eckenswiller.

Eckenswiller has volunteered around the community and is ready to examine life outside North America.

“I really wanted a different experience because the poverty here is nothing like the poverty I’m going to experience over there,” said Eckenswiller.

Poverty is something she would really like to explore in-depth during her trip.

“I want to do a lot of research on the topic. We have social systems here that do help if people are unable to feed themselves or need medical attention. I want to see if there is anything over there of the same nature or if these people are truly left to no resources,” said Eckenswiller.

Although work is her main focus, Eckenswiller does plan on having some fun.

“I’m excited about experiencing the culture. From the people to the food, everything is going to be different,” said Eckenswiller. “Cambodia is a short bus ride away, so I’ll be visiting there and I’ve also made plans to visit Thailand.”


Just Posted

Red Deer Mountie sexual assault trial begins

RCMP officer facing sexual assault with a weapon and breach of trust charges

Power outages expected for Normandeau during electrical upgrade

Customers could experience more than one outage

YMCA to operate Red Deer’s new Northside Community Centre opens July 2

Red Deerians have long been anticipating the opening of the new municipally-owned… Continue reading

Teen reported missing in Red Deer

Red Deer RCMP seek information on teen

Air Canada reviewing how crew left passenger on parked plane

Air Canada said Sunday it’s looking into how crew members could have… Continue reading

WATCH: Hundreds run in the 5K Foam Fest in Red Deer

The annual event took place at Heritage Ranch on Saturday

Cavallini, David scores 3 goals, Canada defeats Cuba 7-0

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Coach John Herdman couldn’t be happier about the state… Continue reading

Toronto Raptors coach Nick Nurse lands same job with Canada’s men’s team

Toronto Raptors head coach Nick Nurse is the new coach of Canada’s… Continue reading

Steamy romance novelist Judith Krantz dies at 91

LOS ANGELES — Writer Judith Krantz, whose million-selling novels such as “Scruples”… Continue reading

Flying Wallendas safely cross Times Square on high wire

NEW YORK — Two siblings from the famed Flying Wallendas safely crossed… Continue reading

UK: Police visit incident dogs Johnson’s leadership campaign

LONDON — The leading contender to become Britain’s next prime minister is… Continue reading

Trump: ‘Surprise’ question about Pence led him to hesitate

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump says he hesitated when asked about endorsing… Continue reading

Indigenous drummers lead pipeline protesters on 22-kilometre march in Victoria

VICTORIA — The government approval of the Trans-Mountain pipeline expansion won’t stop… Continue reading

Retired UBC professor Peter Winterburn killed in Chile, school confirms

VALPARAISO, Chile — A retired geochemistry professor from the University of British… Continue reading

Most Read