Supporting Our Communities: Nordstrom + Seattle Ambassador Program

A Life-Changing Trip

It's not often that someone asks you, "Where in the world do you want to go?" and really means it, but that is exactly what happened to Elaine Raymond, a Marketing manager here at Nordstrom. 

It was all part of the Seattle Ambassador program, an initiative created by the Seattle International Foundation (SIF) to increase awareness of the many Seattle-based nonprofit organizations that are doing so much to help communities in need around the world. When SIF approached Nordstrom with the idea of having a Nordstrom employee serve as their next Seattle Ambassador, we knew it would be a perfect fit for our employees, who are so passionate about giving back and making a difference.

After she was selected, Elaine decided to travel to Bolivia so that she could learn about water-related issues there. The majority of her time was spent with Etta Projects, a Seattle-based nonprofit that focuses on bringing clean water systems, sanitation and health promoter programs to rural Bolivian communities. 

"It's easy to take for granted our access to seemingly unlimited clean water and sanitation." -Elaine Raymond, Nordstrom Marketing Manager.

The trip gave Elaine a new perspective on her life here in Seattle. "The community in Bolivia was amazed by the stark contrast between our two cities. This reaction made me consider that in Seattle, it's easy to take for granted our access to seemingly unlimited clean water and sanitation," she said. "It is important to remember that this isn't the case everywhere in the world. For me, it took seeing what life would be like without these basic amenities to appreciate how fortunate I am to live the way I do."