Land of the Eternal blue sky: Mongolian adventures
Rich culture, pastoral nomads, and blue skies that go on for many miles. Mongolia is one of the few places left in the world that rests in its undisturbed beauty. It’s no wonder that Alvin chose to visit Mongolia for an exchange program he’ll never forget.
Exchange trips are all about taking chances and stepping out of your comfort zone. Alvin had the chance to do that through AIESEC’s wide global network of youth exchange programs from all around the world. Armed with only his knowledge of the English language and a thirst for adventure, he packed his bags and immersed himself in Mongolia for seven weeks. While he was there, he was able to interact with fellow AIESECers in Mongolia, who hosted him throughout his volunteering experience of teaching English to the kids at a Mongolian school. As interacting with children was not something that he was familiar or comfortable with, Alvin had his fair share of doubts. But he was brave and reached out to the kids as warmly as he could. The results of his sincerity thoroughly paid off. At the end of his stay there, he received a countless number of heartfelt notes and innocent requests to extend his stay. Who knew that reaching out to others could, in turn, bless your heart with so much love and affection.
Alvin was able to impart more than basic English skills, he was also able to give the students there a global view, a glimpse of what’s lying beyond the borders. He took the time to introduce his own country and its culture, values and the way of living. Alvin was able to give them more than literary skills, he also gave them a vision, an inspiration, and a sense of curiosity.
Alvin ultimately managed to receive so much more from his experience there rather than just teaching English. Taking part in a volunteer project that he wasn’t very confident in, gave him more room to learn. There, he broke many personal barriers that he never thought he would. Coming away from this experience, he felt empowered to do more, to challenge more in life, and to break more barriers.
It was an eye-opener for him to witness how vastly different their lifestyle was. The Mongolians led a simple life, a way of life that was completely foreign to a city boy who grew up amongst skyscrapers and the newest technologies. He felt he truly learnt to appreciate the simple things in life.
“I’ll never forget my 7 weeks spent there and will definitely return in future to visit them again”