Temporary return to UN agencies to take a diploma 

Today was the inauguration day for my second diploma of FLACSO Chile, of which various other UN agencies like ECLAC(Economic Commission) and WHO(World Health Organization) incorporated to formulate detailed programme with their officials giving lectures at the hall. As usual, as I felt taking the first diploma, I am highly satisfied for the complex nivel of education and true preoccupation they have toward society to make a better future here in this region.

This diploma of November-December 2016 is about Economics of the Health, focusing on the social demand generated by aging society and its demographic changes. How can we provide a better health service to the population? And during the process, how we can avoid discriminative distribution against the old aged population? Those questions may not be answered after the diploma, but still with more questions I would be satisfied for I would be able to think more and deeply with different perspectives learnt from this course.

I have met some friends who still work in ECLAC on the street of Dag Hammarskjold, the street to the varios entrances of UN agencies in Santiago, and talking with them and hugging them like old days, I felt welcomed to be back. I was aware of these streets around Dag Hammarskjold, knowing where to go for lunch time for cheap and decent options, and knowing where to guide other diploma participants for a good quality of chilean beers.

And I realised, well I did not admit this before, that the cost for eating out is much higher here in Chile than in Argentina. In Buenos Aires I used to spend around 10 dollars for a quite decent dinner, but here in Santiago I found myself spending around 15 dollars for one. Sure, I believe that here has a diversified dinning option for having an opened economy.

For upcoming two weeks I am here in this hall taking intensive courses from 9 to 6 day by day. With diverse nationalities, from Costa Rica, Peru, Chile and Corea, and with diverse professional experiences, just with an exception of me being a formal student, we hope to exchange thoughts and perspectives, and at the end these interactions to give birth good presentations of what we will have learnt.

Health is not just about physical diseases but about joyful life attitude that one should be guaranteed. It is an investment that generates benefits like mobility and social connectivity, and as a return it results to consumption, workforce participation, innovation and individual well-being. It is a basic human right, and countries like Chile started to take it as a guarantee and to reform their health system for broader coverage and population. This might have reduced the inequality gap but still there remains challenge to reduce inequity gap between groups. How can we reach to that level?

We study here to try to give a reasonable answer and practice to that question. Wouldn’t it be just enough only with this intention? Many times I doubt myself to be limited to contribute what is better for all. The question that emerged to me after the February trip to Brazil keep haunting me: Are we intelligent enough to give back the respect and trust that people send us? Why not focusing myself, my well-being and my salary instead of taking care of others’ well-being such as public health?

After the course for today ended, I stayed one more hour at the hall. I was writing something and also I was messaging to my friends about today. The silence dominated the environment and filled that space with suffocating responsiblity. But I was able to breath through that thick air. Dense was it, but the density filled up my lungs with a bit of joy. Then I walked out from the faculty to ride a public bike: one of my friend passed me his public bike usage card, so I could use the bike for free. I was riding from Vitacura passing Providencia to Plaza Italia. I was passing many parks and green zone of this decent city, and I kept looking up to the deep blue sky. I saw beautiful environment, and sometimes beautiful people on the bike passing near me. All these made me smile. Happiness dominated me and it bursted as my smile. I recalled this riding was the best part of my Santiaguino life style.

I study what I want to study and what I might be able to contribute wth for others. I ride a bike everyday to commute and enjoy the decent environment. I constantly meet with my beloved friends: Marcelo, Melissa, Miguel and Muriel, if I dare to name them here publically in this post. All these factors are the ones that make me happy, explicitly and implicitly. I might not have a job now that guarantees my future, nor do I generate any productive result, rather I am wasting my money on studying, living, dinning and traveling. But I should admit, with or without shame to say outloud, that I feel being on the right track, dominated by external and inner happiness: I’ve never been happier before. It just gets better everyday, day by day.

I am a lucky guy, and I am deeply grateful for that.

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