Notes from the Table
Read stories, opinion pieces, and reports from The Table
As travelers focused on enacting global change, vulnerability is key for what we hope to accomplish. So why, then, does it often feel so impossibly difficult to do? I’m going to be really honest with you, as my upcoming Table trip to the Middle East inches closer, I am filled with an anxiety that I truly never expected to feel.
The thing is, I’m not even entirely sure where it all comes from. I grew up traveling and none of this is new to me (with the exception of the locations that I’ll be visiting). Even though logic tells me that everything will be okay (I look at statistics like it’s my job), the fear or the unknown shakes me to my core.
In East Amman, there is a neighborhood called Mareekh… also sometimes called “Mars.” It was there, just over the wall, that we met with Abdullah and his family. While his wife seemed energetic and joyful in an attempt to support her husband, it was easy to see the weight that Abdullah carried. There is really no way to shield their two young sons from the harsh realities of life as a Syrian refugee — but they’re trying.
Today, I had the honor of sitting with 3rd Person Inc., an organization doing incredible, thoughtful and meaningful work with refugees and those on the margins in Amman, Jordan. This area of the world is still very new to me and I was grateful to learn more about the realities of our refugee brothers and sisters. I am compelled to share what I learned.
Next year, it will have been 20 years. 20 years that we have been involved in taking people overseas to serve. In those two decades, we have facilitated short-term trips for over 10,000 people in well over over a dozen nations. Many of those trips, were literally hundreds of people at a time that would descend armed with good hearts, naiveté and veiled arrogance. Our largest group was 850 people that traveled at one time, 22 teams of about 40 people each…and yes, they had matching t-shirts, in fact, our friend and comedian, John Crist may have even been on a couple of those trips. It may have created plenty of fodder for his now sold-out shows across the nation.
Competition has defined the American Dream, but the “Dream” has fallen short over and over and turned into nightmares. Achievement is lauded, but success is being redefined.
A bold and thoughtful native Ugandan woman walked us through her, and her teams journey to ending gender-based violence, and misinformation on women’s health. A must read, period.
Is it our responsibility to curate the narrators in our lives? Alyssa Sieb takes a dive into the topic.
A comment from Founder, Caleb David, on the changes we are pushing through!
As our culture shifts, so will The Table.
Writing from the front
Stories shared from our staff and friends on the ground, from Colorado and Washington, DC to Ethiopia and beyond.
We believe in the power of perspective. Our guest contributors are partners, visionaries, and those who are seeking to share a perspective not many have sought to examine. Keep an eye out for new content from our friends at The Table.
In popular Western culture, missionaries are pith helmet-wearing colonialists – forcing their culture and religion on people who don’t want it. But is this fair?
If we truly care about people - we cannot hold them at arms length.