Donors are vital to a non-profit organization’s health and success. In the spirit of charity, they donate money, goods, and their time to help organizations fulfill their missions and visions. As a young non-profit organization, FRJ’s donors are the backbone to its existence, and we want to always show our appreciation to them. This is why we are excited to begin to highlight different donors in the new “FRJ Donor Highlight” installment! The first FRJ donor to be highlighted is Nicolette Regis.
Nicolette has worked in the International Development field for many years, working for organizations such as Management Sciences for Health (MSH), a global health organization, and THIS for Diplomats, a non-profit that promotes mutual understanding and citizen diplomacy through educational and cultural exchanges. Ms. Regis recently completed her Master of Arts in Intercultural and International Communication from American University’s School of International Service.
I found it interesting for someone to get such a unique and specialized graduate degree. When asked about this graduate degree choice, Nicolette took me on her amazing career journey that led her to it. Ms. Regis’ interest was sparked while working at MSH, where she observed the cultural differences between staff that moved from other countries to work at MSH’s United States (U.S.) offices. Nicolette noticed that they were technically prepared to start their jobs at MSH, but were not prepared to navigate the U.S. office culture. One example that stuck out to her was the inability of an international colleague to say no. She stated, “It would be considered impolite for him to say no to a task in his country even if he were too busy. Therefore, he took on too many projects and responsibilities in his new U.S. position, which led him to become overwhelmed.” Ms. Regis went on to explain that another major challenge for international staff was that their kids and spouses struggled to adapt to the new American culture; and we all know that unhappiness in one’s home life can transfer to one’s work life.
As we continued down our career journey conversation, Nicolette shared that she has been a volunteer since 2002 for AFS Intercultural Program USA, where she acts as a Liaison/Orientation Coordinator to high school exchange students. It is clear that she has been on her way for many years to work in the specialized field of Intercultural and International Communication!
Nicolette’s passion for intercultural and international communication, as well as her interest in the African region, is what led her to become an FRJ donor. She stated that, “I became interested in the African region through my work in international development, where I became more aware of the issues on the continent. When I saw one of FRJ’s blog postings on LinkedIn, I went to the website to learn more. I found the organization intriguing because it provides an important opportunity for African youth to contribute to the workforce and thus, to Africa’s economic development. FRJ will have a critical impact on the continent’s future.”
Towards the end of our conversation, I asked Nicolette if she will continue to support FRJ in the future, and I am happy to say that I got an astounding YES! She stressed again the importance of FRJ’s work with African youth that will in her opinion, give them skills that will empower them to take control of their lives, which will have long-lasting effects. Nicolette ended our conversation with, “I am part of the FRJ donor family, and am excited to see how the organization grows.”
Nicolette, from me and FRJ’s Board members and staff, THANK YOU for being part of FRJ’s donor family; and we are ecstatic to have you along with us on our journey!
By: Chanell Hasty - Founder and President