Ryan Ballard

Ryan BallardAge: 26
Hometown: North Olmsted, Ohio
Education:  BA Anthropology & Global Poverty and Practice, The University of California at Berkeley
Specific Field Interests: Slums and Informal Settlements, Food Sovereignty, Public Health, Youth Empowerment and Education.
Placement: Magic Bus, Mumbai, Maharashtra
Area of Focus: Youth Development

Highlights: Ryan is back for a second year with the Fellowship to build on work done during the previous year as a Fellow. Having long been dedicated to service and advocacy for the marginalized, Ryan has found himself working on various social projects spread across four continents. Being abroad has given him the opportunity to balance theory with practical understanding of the complex realities of working in development. Themes of human rights, empowerment, racial subordination, gender discriminaition, sustainable community development, poverty reduction, health as a right and ethical representation of the poor have created a passion for this line of work. South Asia has become a new frontier in his life. In 2009, he found himself in India for the first time observing and learning from a student-led coalition for water and sanitation in slum neighborhoods of Mumbai. In 2010, he was awarded as a Tata International Social Entrepreneurship Scheme Fellow and lived in Jharkhand, India researching strategies to improve maternal/infant health and sexual health in rural communities. While at Berkeley, he devoted himself to a part-time job as a College Advisor and Program Coordinator for under-served students from Oakland, CA with the non-profit College Track. In Spring 2011 he completed a youth photography project in Accra, Ghana with street children. When he’s not working he loves dancing, art and just enjoying the good things in life