7 tips for getting on with white aid workers

  1. DO, smile and say yes. Most white aid workers are entitled and have no idea they have no clue. They already believe they know everything. So, just keep agreeing and advance the groupthink mindset.
  2. DON’T talk about colour. White aid workers don’t like to have to encounter their own whiteness. If you point out your own non-white colour you force the white aid worker to see that yes, they really are a white aid worker helping brown people based on a history of colonialism, and power disparity.
  3. DO talk about benefits. Aid workers love talking about benefits and complaining about them.  Engage in a talk about benefits and the white aid worker will most certainly feel like you are one of them.
  4. DO sympathise with the traumatic experiences that white aid workers encounter as they go about their mission of doing good. Many will be in therapy,  and/or have access to a counsellor paid for by their NGO employer. R&R *rest and relaxation, on top of their generous holiday allowances help keep them sane as they deal with their sacrifices of being humanitarians.
  5. DON’T mention your diverse cultural heritage. White aid workers like to see themselves as citizens of the world. Your ability to skip between languages  that are not all latin based, as well as be from a different class background, and possibly a female to boot does not fit the white aid workers ‘dominant narrative’ of being the coolest third world kid in the room.
  6. DON’T mistake a desire to do good as an actual desire to understand and respect the cultures and perspectives of the global south. The money for international development is an industry built around white, rich people who want to feel better about being white and rich. White aid workers need to feel that are doing something meaningful don’t mistake this for actually doing something meaningful.
  7. IF you find a brown aid worker look out for their white partner.  The white partner means the brown aid worker is probably a coconut, oreo, malteser, or whatever politically incorrect term is doing the rounds these days.

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