Hello! I'm Naomi, and this is my first blog post!
In exactly one week's time I'll be on my way to the airport, undoubtedly very nervous and excited, ready to fly to Kathmandu. I'm going to be spending two weeks in Chitwan on a placement in a hospital - I've received my schedule today and I can barely contain my excitement!
I've never been to a country completely on my own before (well, I'm only 17), not to mention a developing country, so it will be a whole new experience for me. I'm hoping to study Biomedical Science at uni after my A levels, so completing this placement in Nepal will give me lots of experience and an invaluable insight into a different healthcare system. We will also be attending lectures which are related to Biomedical Science, such as Pathology, which will be really interesting. I'm so excited to be there and can't wait to immerse myself in the country and its culture.
Assuming there is at least a little bit of Wifi where we're staying, I will try to update this blog every day about what we've been doing so anyone interested can keep up to date - as well as helping me to keep track of all the memories!
I'll finish this blog post here as I'd better get packing...
We had a good day of work at the office in Projects Abroad Mexico. The first part of the Care & Teaching workshop took place last Friday!
Prof. Consuelo Velasco held the workshop and gave some useful tips to care and teaching volunteers. A continuation of it will happen some time really soon. Any tip given by a professional of education is really helpful!
Thank you to all the volunteers who attended and thank you to Consuelo!
See you in the next one!
It is always such a great feeling to know that our work in the different placement creates a good lasting impact.
Projects Abroad Mexico received a recognition from 'Puente de los Ninos'. They were saying 'thank you' to Projects Abroad Mexico staff due to the arrangement of the Day of the Children with the kids from this orphanage. As you might have read before, volunteers and staff made this happen last week.
Of course this recognition goes to all the volunteers that helped this event to take place, we all made this possible.
For us is such a great thing to receive as it is amazing to know we are creating a good impact.
A big Thank you to the volunteers involved and also to Puente de los Ninos for letting us have this great experience.
My two month placement at Cuidad Guzman has flown by and it seems like only yesterday that Candy and Francisco were welcoming me - as they have many previous Projects Abroad volunteers - and helping me to feel at home.
From the start Francisco took me with him as he covered various events in his capacity as journalist and photographer. Mostly I had no idea where I was going and only the vaguest notion of what was going on but I got to meet lots of people who overwhelmed me with their hospitality. I was fortunate enough to be able to attend a lecture on the role of women in Mexican society, a policy speech at the University, a sculpture exhibition and a women's breakfast for International Women's Day.
Initially I was asked to take two one hour Conversation Club sessions but I felt that I would like to do more. My supervisor accepted my offer and I was able to assist her and one of the other teachers in their English classes as well.
The Conversation Club was more relaxed as it was an option and not at all compulsory with no credits accrued for attendance. The students came from different courses - Tourism, Psychology, International and Agri Business and Medicine. The number of attendees varied according to the pressures of assignments and exams but there was a steady core who would be there three or four times a week. The genuine openness and friendliness of the students made my task an easy one.
I mainly used the similarities and differences between life in Australia and Mexico as a focus. After giving the Australian perspective of some topic I then had the students tell me, in English, how it was for them in Mexico. Some of the topics covered were Family and Celebrations, Fashion, Sport, Vacations and Heroes. One of the liveliest discussions was having them tell me, again in English, about traditional Mexican dishes. Working out the names of the ingredients and how to describe the process for making these dishes was quite hilarious with many side tracks to Translators and Dictionaries. Added to that was the fact that the students came from different places and had their own variations for each dish.
Each student also presented a talk on any subject they were interested in. The size of the group made it more comfortable for the more shy ones to speak. It also gave me the opportunity to note any possible errors in pronunciation or grammar that could be informally incorporated into a following session. The topics ranged from Japanese anima to Mariachi music, to modern inventions, a family industry and of course, one on what a great city Guadalajara is.
Being in Cuidad Guzman has given me the opportunity to visit other places such as Barra de Navidad, Colima, Tapalpa and Guanajuato. Mexico is truly an exciting country. I have been able to experience some of the indigenous culture by attending events in Tuxpan. Perhaps the highlight of all that I have experienced would have to be being able to see first hand the devotion of the people during Semana Santa, Holy Week, and to take part in the Via Crucis.
I have some wonderful memories of the places and people of Cuidad Guzman, Jalisco and Mexico. They will alway remain a part of me.
Gracias y Viva Mexico!
My last visit to Brayan at the hospital took place last Friday. It is always sad to think I am not going to be able to see him as much as I did before but the satisfaction of helping a bit is there.
He calls me now 'Godfather' which is great to hear. I am sincerely thankful to them, Brayan and Esther who have shown me the meaning of always pushing forward in this world. They will remain in my heart forever.
Thanks to Peter Slowe, Projects Abroad Director who also made this contribution possible for them.
All my best wishes for Brayan and Esther!
Our salsa classes are back! This time we had a new teacher…Alex. He is a good salsa dancer so he took over the place of our salsa instructor just for that week.
The guys arrived early to the office and we stared with the dancing. We had a lot of fun in the class. Hope the classes continue coz the guys are showing a good start!
Thanks to everyone who joined us, it was a good night out too! A great mention to Alex, who did a good job as a teacher!!!
This year has been full of goodbyes from people that has been really close to us, really great friends that one misses straight away when they leave.
Laura Hollier came for 6 months and became an integral part of the family in Projects Abroad Mexico. She is in Argentina now doing a Equine therapy project.
Its been a couple of weeks ago when we had to say goodbye...so we went to the salsa club to dance a little bit with everybody else! A night out together to say...'see ya later'!
We all wish you the best, thanks for sharing such amazing moments in Mexico!!! See you soon for sure!!!!
The visit to deliver the donation made by Projects Abroad to Brayan was great. He was wide awake and really smiley! He had told me he has been enjoying the little present I brought to him last week (of course, it was an amazing Transformer)!
It is a bit sad to know that next visit will be one of the lasts I will do to him, I will miss his amazing stories and his crazy hair styles, according to him…in an attempt to copy mine! :D He is excited about going back to school!
Living with MPS (Multipolysacharidoses) is far from being easy. I have learned a lot from Brayan and his amazing, brave and caring mother Esther. They really make you feel that what really matters is to enjoy every single moment in life, with its ups and downs.
July is full of celebrations all over the country, not only in Guadalajara and its surroundings.
In the Southern sate of Guerrero, there is an amazing festival. The city…Taxco dresses up in gallantry and receives the most important guitar players from all over the world, this festival runs from the 10th to the 15th of July.
Taxco is the top 1 silver producer in the whole country and holds a great charm, history and mystery. So why not go there, enjoy of the city and a great music festival?
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