Editor’s Note: DC Service Corps volunteer Grace Kueber serves as a Protection Counselor at the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). She shares a video and reflection as the 2021-2022 DC Service Corps program year draws to an end. 


 

A year ago I had a completely different path in mind. I was a completely different person. I sought validation from those who insisted they knew me. I wanted to fit this definition of success, not tailored for me but for those I didn’t want to be like. And suddenly, there was this opportunity to move to Washington, D.C. for a year to live with people I didn’t know. Yet, I said yes. Arriving in DC, I decided to change my mindset. This was my year to understand myself and God, to become compassionate and open, to try new things, and push myself. It wasn’t easy. I found myself struggling with homesickness, imposter syndrome, work boundaries, and even secondary trauma from the difficult stories I encounter at the UNCHR. But as my year draws to an end, I am so happy that I decided to say yes, especially my yes to community. I have found joy in witnessing God in those around me and having the privilege of being a part of people’s lives like this. To Julia, Mari, Sister Meg, and Victor – who served as my role models for life, faith, and kindness. To Fatima- who was my greatest defense against battling homesickness. To Erin- who filled us with delicious food and iconic pop culture references. To Anna, Chris, Emily, Joanie, Lauren, and Tori- who became my support and inspired me to look at the world with eyes of wonder and beauty. I loved being a part of this adventure with you. And I wish you all the very best!