July 24, 2020

Exchange Visitor Aggie Flores Maini's Internship with Guayaki



As an Argentinian, Aggie has been familiar with Guayaki's signature product for most of her life.  "I’ve been drinking yerba mate since I was 4 years old," Aggie recalls.  Maybe you've seen a box in the tea aisle at your local grocery store and wondered what it was, or perhaps you're familiar with this South American herbal tea that has been gaining popularity in the US.  Known for being rich in antioxidants that rivals green tea, yerba mate is significant for much more than that in Argentina.  "The biggest impact of the plant goes beyond its nutritional benefits. It is the community spirit that makes the plant so unique to us. It brings people together, it makes people stop and interact with each other, live the moment, enjoy each other’s presence," wrote Aggie in her application to CIP last year. 

We were impressed by Aggie's passion for yerba mate and the host organization that invited her to participate in her exchange.  "All these qualities are the kind of things Guayaki wants to bring into their events," Aggie told us about her prospective host.  Guayaki, which has been running a program of socially and environmentally conscious events and concerts designed to raise awareness of environmental and labor issues and raise funds to reinvest in local indigenous communities, was a perfect fit for Aggie's talents and personal values. "I have the spirit of Yerba Mate, mixed with over 6 years of event experience, and industrial and graphic design studies." And so, following her studies at the University of Buenos Aires, Aggie began a year-long internship with Guayaki in California.  "I really did learn so many things from Guayaki and with Guayaki. I learned about sustainability, and how to take care of the environment and society as a company. About how to be a conscious leader, and how to support my co-workers. I grew my abilities in event production, graphic design, animation, set decoration, stage design, and, above everything, communication."


"Here are some pictures with my coworkers and some work that I've done all over the US: New York, Los Angeles, South Carolina, Colorado, Nevada, and Canada as well.  The list goes on. I really loved how much freedom they gave me with my creativity and how beautiful every single event looked," Aggie shared.  When asked what advice she has for future participants, Aggie also shared, "Get out there, try new things. Get yourself uncomfortable, you’ll see that it wasn’t that bad once you pass that sensation. You are valuable, you are important, you don’t have to prove anything to anyone other than yourself. Not being from the USA doesn’t make you less than a US citizen. Pay attention to your body, pay attention to your emotions. Drink water."  We're surprised she didn't advise us to drink yerba mate, but the advice is solid and we wholeheartedly agree. 

Best of luck to you, Aggie, and please keep in touch!  

Posted by Lindsey Walsh on July 24, 2020 at 1:19 PM in Participant Permalink
There are currently no comments for this entry.

(Note: No HTML. URLs automatically linked.)
*Enter Security Key: