Finding Community Away From Home

Updated: Dec 30, 2020

Hey there! I’m Kristi Hendrickson, an American Society member and WomenWork Committee member. As I ring in my one-year anniversary in Brazil (April 1!), I’ve been reflecting on how quickly I felt a sense of community here in São Paulo. This is in large part to the greater AmSoc group and the amazing women behind WomenWork.

Originally from the US (Wisconsin), I arrived in São Paulo after a two-year travel sabbatical, and needed to begin networking to successfully find a job. With a background in marketing, I understood the importance of relationships, so I wanted to start meeting people in the market as quickly as possible. After just a few weeks, I attended my first AmSoc happy hour at Hoegaarden where I met people who graciously offered me their contacts to get my job search rolling. That night I was also invited to play at the annual softball tournament, which I participated in a few weeks later. I couldn't believe that within a month I had met so many friendly, like-minded people, who were willing to help. It really made me feel at home.

My third AmSoc event was WomenWork in June of last year, and I remember leaving the event feeling incredibly inspired and energized. An event that promotes women learning from each other, encouraging one another, with the opportunity to meet new people and network. I knew from the get-go that I wanted to be more involved with this wonderful initiative, and indicated my interest to Jackie, the co-founder of WomenWork. She welcomed me without reserve. It's been a wonderful experience being a part of the committee, and I look forward to what is yet to come.

Throughout the past 12 months, I’ve continued to participate in various AmSoc events such as the Açaí and Abacaxi Bowls (flag football tournaments), the Angel Party, LetsConnect.Talks events, and the beautiful year-end Holiday Party. What started as a job search (and thankfully I landed one!), has turned into a wonderful community of friendships that I couldn’t have envisioned after just one year of calling Brazil home.

I encourage everyone (women and men!) to join us at our next WomenWork event; refer to our main site and mark those dates down on your calendar. It’s a great opportunity to get to network with fellow members and non-members in a casual, welcoming setting. I look forward to seeing you there or at another AmSoc event in the near future!

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