|Gulin Bulbuloglu and Monika Wilcox, 2016|
By Gulin Bulbuloglu, GlobalPittsburgh volunteer from Turkey
I met Monika Wilcox, a Program Officer for the national program agency FHI 360 in 2009 when I was a participant from Turkey in the International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP) in Washington, D.C. She accompanied us as our Program Officer throughout a 2 week long exchange for young leaders. The main theme of our project was the importance of giving back to the community in which we lived.
One year after the completion of our program, Monika had the opportunity to visit me in Istanbul, Turkey, where I was attending university. We had a chance to catch up, and talk about how the IVLP impacted our lives.
Nearly 7 years after my IVLP experience, I moved to Pittsburgh, and started to look for an opportunity to give back to the new community in which I was living. While looking for an organization at which I could volunteer, I discovered GlobalPittsburgh. Its mission was something I strongly believed in: creating international connections within the community and beyond to other parts of the world.