The First Interaction

Posted By: IanThom
Posted On: September 8th, 2017
Attending: Cork Institute of Technology

We finally made it to Ireland and everyone was happy to step off the plane.  Only two more bus rides and we had finally made it to Ulster University in Jordanstown, Northern Ireland. I could not wait for the coming week to start to get to know all these scholars, learn more about what the program had in store for us and to work with these incredible kids.  One of the first nights we went into a recreation centre where we were able to play with the youth in various different sports. One boy and I though spent time mostly reenacting soccer plays and Cristiano Ronaldo celebrations.

The kids were so welcoming as they taught us the native lingo, their favorite foods, and all the new sports we had no idea about.  We also worked through the program eHoops, where disadvantaged youth come in for about three hours and work with our program. We do physical activity for an hour and a half, then we have a discussion about a certain topic for an hour and half and have pizza to wrap it up.  It was eye opening to see what these sixteen to twenty-four year olds have been through, and how a program can help reshape their life onto a positive track.  So far an incredible journey, it means a lot to help and mentor youth, and to be a positive role model and bond even though from different cultures is marvelous.

 

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