Hi there! My name is Rachel Z and I am an avid lover of life, language, the outdoors, leadership, Harry Potter, dogs, and building relationships. I was born and raised in New Jersey surrounded by an incredibly supportive family who all immigrated to the United States when the USSR broke apart in 1991. My cultural background as a Russian Jew has heavily influenced my development as an active citizen in this world and the opportunities that I have dedicated my time to.
I graduated from the University of Delaware where I had a tremendous undergraduate experience. I was active in several student groups all based around student life on campus and in the residence halls. It is at the University of Delaware where I was able to explore what “community” truly meant to me – I learned quite a lot about the beauty of being different, the importance of having resources, and the strength that comes along with constantly challenging and developing ourselves. My education and my experiences in that time frame of my life are what brought me to my current adventure.
I now find myself living and volunteering for an NGO called Manna Project International in Managua, Nicaragua. I have always had a thirst to travel, challenge myself, and serve others. Manna has given me that opportunity! I am able to exercise my leadership through running on-the-ground programs like teaching English classes, facilitating patient intake at our health clinic, building relationships with families in our Child Sponsorship program, and cultivating healthy life practices at public school gym classes.
Not only has working with Manna ignited my passion for service and building relationships, but it has also helped me evolve skills that will stick with me through my future endeavors. I am able to expand my Spanish-speaking capabilities and hopefully reach my aspiration of fluency – I am able to understand more about the grant writing process for NGOs – I am able to expand upon recruitment efforts and so much more.
I wish that I had the chance to know Ally because I have a strong inkling that we would become lost in conversation about how beautiful and magical this world and especially the people on it are. I am thankful that I have the chance and the support to continue exploring, providing resources, and learning from the world around me. I hope that through my connection to Live Like Ally I will never stop engaging in service or adventuring because there truly is no age-limit.
Thank you 🙂