A Day in the Life of...Me
Welcome to my website where I (Scott Jelinek) document the stories and pictures of my various trips around the world. This summer (2008) I received an Advanced Study Grant from Boston College to go to Mozambique to continue the research I started last summer in East Africa to conduct research on the positive impact that micro-finance (in the form of very small loans) seems to be having on the declining rates of HIV/AIDS infection especially in Uganda (To read more, check out the Boston College article about me) or go to my **BLOG**.
I am working for the Africa Regional Director of Opportunity International (OI), a global micro-finance organization, along with my friend and BC classmate, Chelsea Jacobs. We were tasked to develop a generic approach to how the growing demand for micro-loans in Africa can be creatively used to motivate clients to engage in HIV/AIDS related activities in the areas of testing, treatment and prevention. While the HIV/AIDS epidemic in Africa can seem overwhelming, many (including the Gates Foundation) believe that micro-loans can be an important means to have a positive impact.
Chelsea and I spent time in Kenya and Uganda, compiling field-based research. We worked with local organizations, hospitals and clinics, the Center for Disease Control (CDC), and interviewed current and prospective clients to see what programs OI can adopt or develop to provide their clients with the education and the methods required for them to combat HIV/AIDS or to live HIV/AIDS free.
Last summer I volunteered in Accra, Ghana for 4 weeks working at a local teaching hospital (Korle Bu) and clinic working with HIV/AIDS patients. In addition, I shadowed the director of the West Africa AIDS Foundation (WAAF) and a doctor at Family Health International (FHI) as they did diagnoses, treatments, counseling, and client visits. I also worked in schools trying to promote HIV/AIDS education and awareness with YPEP (Youngsters Peer Education Program). I also visited the local offices of Opportunity International's micro-bank in Ghana in order to compare/contrast Opportunity's approach to micro-finance in Ghana with what I had experienced in China working as an intern for 6 weeks two summers ago (2005) for Opportunity in Hefei, China.
To read more about my adventures this summer (2007) in Kenya and Uganda, click here! Over the past 20 years, I have traveled, lived, and work in 36 countries on 5 continents, check out the map to see where I have been.