Hayley’s time in Costa Rica

July 29th, 2019

In the past 4 weeks I’ve experience a lot of new things and changes. Working in a completely different environment, with so many foreign scenes, tastes, smells and sounds, it really gave me a different perspective of the world that we live in.

Coming from such a small community to exploring Times Square in NYC to being in the tropics and planting trees in the span of two weeks was an overwhelming change to me. In Cirenas we learned a lot about permaculture and got hands on experience. We planted rice, 114 trees and made a “lasagna” out of natural materials to make a compost heap. We also did beach cleaning along the shores. I was really surprised as to how much plastic there was. After a hard day of work we always got the chance to dip into the ocean and watch one of the most beautiful sunsets. We rode horses, learned how to make traditional tortillas and did some traditional dancing as well.

Here at the United World College we recently did a three-session course called “The Agents of Change” where we talked about issues around the globe while coming up with strategies to work against them. We are currently taking Spanish classes, which isn’t the easiest thing for me but learning this new language really helps me to communicate with locals.

In the time of being in Santa Ana we went to an organic market where we tried fresh local fruits and bought some homemade souvenirs to bring back home. We also gave the Canadian embassy a presentation about who we are and where we come from, we talked lot about our culture and language. The other week the group and I got a tour of an old historical town called “Sarchi” we had the chance to check out one of the oxcart factories which still runs without electricity and is run only by hydroelectricity.

I’m exploring a lot and learning new things every day. Northern Youth Abroad is a great program that really helps you to grow as a young adult. Not only am I learning about different cultures but really getting to embrace mine as well. Getting to travel internationally has given me a great understanding of how I can have an impact on the world.

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