August 21st, 2014 | Uncategorized
Moving into Northern Ireland has been a constant eye opening experience. From meeting the Sport Changes Life staff, working at summer camps, meeting the other 12 Scholars, and being able to work with the EHOOPS and SHEHOOPS, I have already made fast friends and learned new things. My biggest goal while here is to learn as much from the people I meet as I can. There is a huge cultural learning curve.
In the states I am considered a really fast talker so it is a nice change that the Northern Irish speak very quickly and tend to understand me better than people in my own country. I would say my SCL teammate/mentor Aimee Shiels talks faster than anyone I have ever met. She has taught me many Northern Irish terms, shattered (tired), craic (fun), wee (little) to help me get acquainted with the Northern Irish life. The most influential experience of my week in Ireland so far has come from meeting the young people from East Belfast and West Belfast.
It has been an educational experience to learn about the areas they come from and what it is like for them on a daily basis. They remind me of so many of my friends and family from back home. I cannot wait to get to know them more and to invest in a true friendship with all the EHOOPS, SHEHOOPS, and summer camp young people.
Interacting and playing different games with the young people has allowed me to feel like a kid and have fun with the beginning of this journey so far. I look forward to meeting and interacting with more young people in the community as well as learning from everywhere I go and everyone I meet. For now it’s on to my next lesson in Ireland but I will forever remember my first few days of interacting with such phenomenal young people.