Bella Lopez Essay

Bella M Lopez

Social Justice Award

5 May 2015

I struggled deciding what social justice issue i'm most interested in. There are a lot of social justice issues that are going around in the world, the one that I’m most fond of is Globalization. I chose globalization because it’s such a broad view of the world. Like the famous activist Vandana Shiva puts it, “We live in an interconnected world and changes at the local level, have global implications, and changes at the global level have implications for local economies, local cultures, and local democracy. “ (Shiva, 86) Globalization came into mind because this semester I spent multiple hours researching and learning about the privatization of water, patent infringement lawsuits that farmers face by multi billion corporations, to things at the local level such as poverty. Everything is interconnected. The reason why millions of people are in poverty has to do with Globalization.

I can focus on one topic, however a social justice activist does not centralize their attention to one thing. Mary Nangeroni certainly didn’t, Mary spent countless of hours focusing her attention on feeding the poor, ending domestic violence, and advocating for civil rights issues. Like Mary, I wish world hunger ends, racial discrimination ends, but the process will take time. I have been trying to achieve my social justice goals by volunteering my time. I volunteered in the Salvation Army in Leominster, and the Arlington school in Lawrence. These two areas are urban, and are of the poorest areas in New England. I helped middle school students put together a script of the book, “The Boy In The Striped Pajamas”, and dedicated some time organizing clothing that can be accessible for low income families. I presented to students and faculty on issues like war, and GMO’s In LARCC and Social Justice Week. I also participated in many social Justice open discussion throughout the year. As the years go by, I plan to continue engaging in Social Justice issues that can help change the status quo of Globalization. I plan to study abroad in Argentina and take part in Social Justice Issues that are happening there. I hope to do a social justice internship, or participate in volunteer work for the Argentine community.

There are many social Justice issues that I would like to work on in the future. One of the issues that I would like to work on is preserving biodiversity, and establishing a way that locally grown produce can be accessible to low income families or homeless people. If there’s one thing I believe that people should have is the basic human necessities of water and food. Another social justice issue that I would like to put my time and effort in is making sure that the youth of low income families primarily Latino and African Americans can have access to a good education. I have always talked about wanting to start my own non profit organization. One of my main goals in life is to have a youth center in Central America, and hopefully it can grow and branch out to other countries in the world. The youth center will not only teach kids how to read and write, but it will also provide fun activities for kids and teenagers to get involved by doing volunteer work and participating in fun activities like dance, and sports. I will keep my mind open to other social justice issues but so far these are the ones that I’m most passionate about and want to dedicate a large portion of my life to. It's an honor to be nominated for this award, and I hope to make this world a better environment for all.

Source:  Shiva, Vandana. Earth Democracy: Justice, Sustainability, and Peace. Cambridge, MA: South End, 2005. Print