My name is Maria (far right) and I am studying International Development at UCC.
Being a strong activist of rights; you can find me either tweeting or posting stuff on Facebook or going to talks, conferences, and demonstrations.
I am an EIL Access Travel Award winner for 2015 with a real desire to make a difference. My interests range from gender equality to global conflict but what has been my main focus of study and research is sexual health.
Sexuality plays such a large role in many people’s lives. It is a large determinant in their health and well-being, which is why I am such a strong advocate for the sexual wellbeing for all. With regards to developing countries, HIV has posed a large problem to many people’s sexual health and it is a battle many countries are still facing today.
In the case of HIV, prevention programmes are essential to the health of the population, which is why I’ll be working with the M+Plus Foundation in Chiang Mai this summer on the topics of HIV education, prevention and treatment, as well as LGBT* activism. After all my reading, I am finally going to see the work that was being done, the impact that is happening, and I have never felt so motivated and driven.
So far I am loving Thailand. The weather’s amazing, the food is delicious and you’ll find some of the nicest people you’ll ever meet (especially all the gang at Cultural Canvas Thailand and the M+Plus Foundation).
I’ll be putting up a blog soon about my adventures in Chiang Mai and the amazing work at the M+Plus Foundation so watch this space! Be expecting loads of blogs, vlogs and photos from me and the rest of the volunteers while we document and share our time there!
Until next time…