Reflection Paper

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I am a Nigerian who recently became an American citizen, and I am rooted in my African culture, where it is the responsibility of young adults in the community to care for the young and the elderly. At age 9, I fell sick with typhoid fever and was in a coma for two days. Had it not been for the nurses and doctors who took good care of me, I would not have overcome the sickness. For many reasons, then, it is perhaps not surprising that, when my family and I moved to the United States eight years ago, I found myself drawn to the work of providing care and support to others. In Nigeria, because there is a small number of “child-care systems” and no “homes for the dying,” everyone’s home is open for those who need care, and it is simply a way of life. This way of life continued when my family and I moved to the U.S. and we joined a community of relatives and neighbors, who practiced a similar culture, and this compassionate spirit continued for me in many forms. I am my parent's fifth child, but when I moved with only my parents and my younger brother, Clinton, I took the responsibilities of their first child. Since my older siblings did not move with us, I have not seen them for 8 years. Assuming the role of a first child, I was responsible for Clinton while my parents worked double shifts as nursing assistants in geriatric facilities. This responsibility led to a pivotal moment when in high school, I sought opportunities to work with other children. I began to collaborate

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