More possibilities in Thai Buddhism

More possibilities in Thai Buddhism

        During August 13th to 20th, I took part in Thai Buddhism Impression project in Chiang Mai and tried to help local community improve Buddhism communication, which benefits me a lot in knowledge about Thai Buddhism.


August is very hot in Chiang Mai and it always rains for a short time. So to stay quiet to do some meditation can be difficult for me. Besides, chanting in Buddhism use Bali language, which is very hard to understand.


Do meditation in Wat RamPoeng, listen to chanting and follow chanting, walk the path with the Buddha.


Meditation is a good way for us to improve our mind and stay peaceful. Through several times meditation, I get knowledge about how to do the meditation correctly and help some people finish their meditation and Buddhism manners impression.  For example, the manner to show empathy to the dead relatives, the manner to show respect to the Buddha.

Chat with different monks in English for 6 hours, that let me know more about Buddhism. There are many foreign monks studying in Mahachulalongkornrajavidyalaya University, Chiang Mai Campus, for example, come from Lao and Myanmar. All of monks have different majors in the university, have to learn many things, such as English, to communicate with foreign visitors frequently. Some little monks are very shy to speak English but have been Buddhist for more than 10 years. Even monks can be confused sometime, because some of them will be back to the normal life in the future.

Learn to make Thai cuisine Tom Yam Gong. With the help of coordinators, I know how to pick up herbs and vegetables into soup. Soup is very important for Thai people.


Italy Whale and Dolphin Conservation

This project came to my attention spontaneously while I was job searching on LinkedIn and I decided to apply to give myself a new unforgettable experience. Overall, it definitely was a trip to remember.


Traveling to the location was a bit of a journey, but nonetheless, an adventure in itself. I had to fly to Roma, take a connection to Napoli, grab an Alibus to the port for ferries, and take a ferry to Ischia to the Casamicciola harbour to find everyone aboard the “Jean Gab” (the boat we spent majority of our days on). To my surprise, the crew told me the Jean Gab was build almost 100 years ago in 1930.


The crew on board were so friendly and open to teaching us volunteers how to identify cetaceans, how to utilize the sensory tools, as well as just conversing with us about their research and lives in general. The captain is also a fantastic cook and we all bonded immediately after the first meal which made the entire trip very light-hearted and wholesome.


As volunteers, our main responsibility was helping the researchers look out and spot cetaceans every day we departed the harbour out to the Mediterranean Sea. There is no guarantee we would see an animal everyday, but when we did, it was breathtaking every time. We also shared chores as well as assisted the crew with mooring and departing everyday.


This project is a great first experience for those wanting to get into marine conservation. You learn about the animals and cetaceans you spot and it is a great way to create awareness of the issues surrounding marine life and human interactions around the Mediterranean. Even though spending days out as sea with a potential of not seeing anything may be a deterrent, you know for sure the data that is collected throughout the day will be helpful and used through academia and even within the political sphere with regards to creation and drafting of new environmental and conservation policies.


I definitely recommend this project for all those interested in getting their first feel in marine conservation and/or for those wanting to experience and create unique relationships with people and the environment.

The Unexpected Journey

One night in the midst of a family vacation and a desperate grab into the depths of the universe I went on a deep-sea dive on the internet to find some kind of program I could resonate with. When I found Global Nomadic it was like hitting the lottery, I went with some of my first picks then finally, I decided I need to try one that I knew would be a challenge for me. I’ve never been interested in teaching, at least not to adolescents. However, I recently encountered some friends that had a few questions about the environment, for instance, “Why does it hail in the summer?”; instead of answering simply “because of the intense winds”, I answered in a way that was nearly incoherent and not targeted towards the group who asked me. Ultimately I wanted to train myself to be able to explain environmental concepts in a way that others could more simply understand. Getting lost in translation is not an excuse for environmentalism to take a backseat, and I won’t let it. 

Planning for this trip proved to be difficult; there was little resources provided to Global Nomadic from the Green Lion to fully prepare me for what to expect: I could not reach out to the Green Lion in order to inquire due to the coordinator’s and the organization’s predetermined relationship, I knew absolutely no one who knew anything about the Green Lion, and on top of everything with the information I was given through Global Nomadic I ended up over preparing for the trip by purchasing things that I never actually needed or used. When I arrived at the facility, I was fully prepared to leave at the first sign of dysfunction (which never happened, and I will forever be grateful for staying). 

This trip was fully planned, funded, and organized by me, which was why I was so offended when I could not coordinate with the Green Lion prior to my arrival. This was to hopefully ensure that I did not waste money, and I had all my expenses covered before my arrival. 

My first day was overwhelming: prior to my arrival I had been doing some independent traveling, so when it came time for my departure and the next step of my journey I contacted the Green Lion for information and was met with indignant resistance to any assistance. I was persistent with the information that I was supposed to start that day, and evidently they were not aware of that fact. When I finally was able to refer to a communication we had several months prior about my arrival dates, they were finally willing to give me the address for the facility. When I arrived at the Green Lion it was clear that they were caught off guard and confused about my being there, took a COVID-19 test, took my luggage to my room with little to no acknowledgement from anyone in the facility, and experienced the rest of the day alone and reading my book. It wasn’t until late in the day that I received any kind of friendly faces. 

After the first day, the energy completely changed at the Green Lion. I always felt well looked after and like I had a great support system; the staff always listened and provided anything and everything in their power to be helpful. The accommodations were great, with the exception of pre-installed screens and mosquito nets, everything about the dormitory was impeccable. I think the mattresses were the best in Bali. The food was fantastic, lots of variety and all very local, which I very much appreciated. The area and culture was sublime, the people were very welcoming and friendly. The seclusion from the inner city made the area peaceful and welcoming.

It was not until after I arrived that I was told that there was an option for an orientation week, or other independent accommodations. So, while everyone was going through their intro week, I was thrown directly into the Education program with absolutely no time to prepare, anyone to work with, or idea of what I should be doing. 

With all that being said, this project has opened a door for meeting some of the best people I have ever had the pleasure of meeting. Beautiful souls with the desire to do good for the world and their communities. These connections and memories are some that I will cherish for the rest of my life. However, these are not the key moments I was hoping to take away, even though teaching the students was gratifying, I feel with the proper preparation I could have walked away with a better experience, the one I paid for. 

The Noteworthy and Mentionable: Journey to Bali

I Made Chakra grew up here; for the past 50 years he has been apart of this community and watched it evolved. With the Green Revolution sparking a mere four years before his birth, he slowly witnessed its transformation. From fireflies, herons, eels and snails in the rice fields (or ‘subaks’) to chemicals and poisoned farmers. A place where you could once drink almost directly from the subaks to an area where you bring water with you everywhere. With only 3km between his home and the city center of Ubud (one of the busiest/most visited places in Bali) he has watched this area go from rice fields as far as the eye could see to villas and cafes taking their place. Chakra is working tirelessly to bring a semblance of his childhood back to life, in ways that his community does not always understand.

A little about me, I am an Environmental Geoscientist with specialties in Anthropology, Biosphere, and Geology. I have a history in hazardous waste management with a Heritage Environmental Services, at a company (who shall remain nameless) that is largely responsible for the modern techniques used in agriculture around the world (i.e. seed modification and pesticides and herbicides). I needed out; I have always dreamed to be apart of the bigger picture of environmentalism. To create a world that analyzes human activity and alters it in order to work in harmony with the world around us; plate tectonics, geology, flora, fauna, economics, healthcare, transportation, culture and the arts.

All this to say I have been training my entire life for an experience such as this.

When I came across Global Nomadic and saw that they offered a plethora of Environmental volunteer opportunities, I knew I had to jump at it. I filled out the application at about 1:30am on a whim, and by the next morning I had gotten a response from Chakra accepting me into his program. Aghast, I got to work. I already had two jobs, one as an Environmental Chemist, and the other as a server at a local pizza place. For the next four months I would work seven days a week, 70 hours a week. While I did reach out to others for financial support through this journey, my call remained unanswered. I began the planning about three months before my start date, although I knew I was a little out of my depth, I did it. I booked flights with four different airlines, reached out to a Visa agency in Bali to get my B211a visa prior to arrival, got half a dozen vaccines, did deep dive internet searches on both Global Nomadic and Tri Hita Karana, got an international drivers license, and even printed off all essential paperwork in triplicate to make sure I had everything I needed. I brought a mosquito net, water proof socks, three different kinds of bug repellent, and even a multi-tool with a hatchet. When coming here I was fully aware that what I was signing up for was not a simple opportunity to travel across Bali with a boost to my resume; this was going to be real work, as well as a life changing experience, involving materials and practices that were going to be absolutely foreign to me.

My time with Chakra and Tri Hita Karana started on a Sunday morning after 25 hours of flight time across the globe, leaving me with a 13 hour time difference between me and everything I have ever known. We left the airport and swiftly made our way through the hoards of traffic in Denpasar and after I acquired a SIM card (cause my mama taught me never to get in the car with strangers) I was able to fully absorb the drive through Bali in awe: the culture, the way people drove, the architecture, and even seeing how some of the restaurants I was familiar with have adapted. Once I arrived to the Permaculture house, I saw just how dedicated Chakra was: a natural swimming pool with crystal clear water, a composting toilet, sustainable construction, dozens of bee boxes, multiple composing bins that are taller than me (5ft 4in or 1.6m for reference), and hot water powered by passive solar powered heating.

After sleeping for 13 hours I woke up early on Monday morning, took a shower, and emerged from my new cave to find Chakra, bright eyed and bushy-tailed, inviting me for my first walk around the village I will be calling home for the next six weeks.

Now I would also like to preface this by saying that the rumors are true: pollution is everywhere, and water is very clearly a problem in Bali. However, one of the first things that stood out to me was just how many different kinds of fruits were sprinkled along our path: mangos, noni, coconut, dragon-fruit, New Zealand cherries, and so many more.  There was also magnificent trees, such as the Banyun tree, and the White Milk tree. [The Banyun tree holds great cultural significance because it typically signifies a local market, due to its extreme height and width (roots grow down from the branches and overtime create separate supporting trunks). The White Milk tree is a great biological indicator for fresh ground water, and often if you dig near one or chop one down, you are able to find an underwater spring.] You can also find fish in the local waterways, located along roads, that help purify the local water as well as provide a biological indicator for contaminated water (dead fish = bad water).  The most noteworthy however, is the people, whom are so accommodating and friendly; not once have I felt unwelcome.

These are not always attributes that you can find in the United States.

Our first venture took us to a local hotel/restaurant established being developed by a company called ‘Locavore’ who hired Chakra to establish a sustainable water filtration system. The waste water produced would include kitchen waste, human waste, sink, and gardening runoff. The most prominent feature was a wetland system, consisting of a bed of lava rock (which would filter out some basic contaminants) and succulent plants (whose root systems would help break down bacteria and utilize unwanted nutrients) fed by a pump system, moving the grey/black water into the the wetland system and eventually into a pond home to a community of fish, whom continue to break down the unwanted water contaminants. In the middle of this pond is a vortex fountain that would oxygenate the water. Behind the scenes, there would also be a worm (‘vermi’) system, black soldier flies, and bacterial system that would all aid in the purification of the water produced by this establishment. While this system may seem complex, all aspects are easily replicable, adaptable, and replaceable. Making this a prime example for sustainable and appropriate technology.

Not every project was this straight-forward however;Chakra has taken on a new venture that veers into the cultural realm: a community garden. In order to kickstart this project he needs to acquire approval from the head of the village to use this community land and transform it into a sustainable, accessible, and prosperous market for fresh foods in his community. While this seems like an easy feat, it faces its own challenges. Like many people and enterprises, money is in demand, and with the location of this property in high demand to those who build the Pinterest worthy villas and cafes. Aside from that this land has been used as an unofficial dump site for local trash to those in its vicinity. Will the needs of the communities nutrition and agriculture practices outweigh those in need of money and disposal conveniences? Only time will tell.

Chakra faces a lot of challenges similar to these. For example, the rice farmers that are common in this area, who have been using primarily artificial fertilizers and pesticides have some fairly simple and cost efficient solutions, but impede on the cultural constructs that have been put in place. The top terrace would be a prime location for livestock (known as the penalopin), whom would provide a natural supply of fertilizer for the field bellow it. Unfortunately, this terrace has been marked as ‘sacred’ and the locals refuse to contaminate this land with the filth of livestock. The origin of this plot being classified as sacred comes from the seeds; the best seeds would be found in the top terrace due to the highest amount of nutrients in it’s soil – this knowledge has been lost. Chakras goal is to one day teach the community why this field was considered sacred, or rather teach the origins of these beliefs.

Cultural impediments was the topic of a lecture I had the pleasure of attending (The 5th International Conference on Biosciences and Engineering/ The 2nd International Conference on Innovative Agricultural Technology). This is where we discussed amongst a committee whom were all focused in advancing technology to become more accessible and accommodating to cultural and communal needs. This is where he spoke with Sharon Dixon from ACU who both focused on how food has changed with the current standards. Heritage crops have adapted to their environment, and with them, the nutritional needs of the people, whom are currently at a deficit.

There has been a surplus of brith complications with women in this region due to insufficient nutrition in their common diet (rice). There is also a surplus of diabetes and heart disease in the Balinese people in recent years; with the rise of Westernization/Globalization a cheaper and more accessible food supply of processed foods in the region, this is no surprise. Chakra likes to joke that those who eat Red Rice (a heritage strain) tend to be healthier and have a higher resistance to disease, but this absolutely has some truth to it. Referring back to the fight for the community garden, the head of the village happened to be sick for a few days in which Chakra had hoped to get in contact with him. Would he be healthier if the food was less modified/processed? Only progress would help us find out. Or lets talk about my transition between the States and Bali; when i first arrived I had to adapt to the food here, because it is cleaner and their are less additives, my stomach had to detox from all the foul contents that the states have been feeding me for years. Since being here I have not felt more clear of mind or more physically capable. Will being here and eating the food here help me not develop my predisposed diagnosis of cancer? That might be too big of a question for the answers that are obtainable, but nonetheless, I have lost 15lbs in the three weeks I have been here, so far.

Working with Chakra has allowed me to see various aspects of the field I will do anything to be apart of one day. He has included me in several consulting opportunities; one included how we can make organic heritage rice farming more appealing to local Suback (rice paddies) owners,  another was how we could convert underdeveloped rice terraces into a flourishing agroforestry system, and most importantly, how we can adapt local customs to allow for more agricultural practices. Permaculture is a collaborative practice that requires perspectives from many different people, such as: appropriate technology experts, nutritionists, civil engineers, cultural leaders and environmentalists.

As such, it is not a singular study, but rather it is many different studies and practices that collaborate in order to achieve their ultimate goal: people working with nature in order to be productive as well as healthy.



My Idea of Fun: Environmental Outreach

Environmentalism includes real manual labor: getting your hands in the dirt, digging holes to plant trees, tasting soil and plants for pesticides; polluting yourself in the spirit of mediation. While there is a place for environmental protests and petitions, true change comes from knowing how it works. Working towards a world with cleaner food, air, water, roads, homes, and fields takes more change than one individual can possibly provide. Meeting others with similar goals and career aspirations is exactly what this experience has provided. I have had the privilege of being put in the paths of those who may not have always prepared to be a part of the earth rehabilitation process, but need access to those who have. 



Sebastian is a German technology expert who has moved to Bali and leased a plot of land in the heart of the Rice Bowl (Tegal Makan, Tebannon) that has been stripped of its water due to an unprecedented redirection of its water supply to a more touristy area. Sebastian is interested in converting his, once cornfield, plot of land into a thriving agroforestry system and permaculture center. With nothing but dead corn and a dozen terraces, I got to work. I used an aerial view of the property to map out the separate rice terraces and sections of the property that we would later use to identify locations for the key aspects of the project; a cow house, fish pond, azola patch, duck run, classroom, living kitchen, living pharmacy, living fence, subak, wind mill, parking area, bio-gas tank, rainwater collection system, and potentially a community trading center. Since then, my map has been used as a blueprint for the project.


Tri Sulan:

Tri is a Balinese adjerovetic doctor that has studied all around the world the art of alternative medicine and its real-life effectiveness on human health. He visited us one evening to share some of his wisdom as well as a sustainable and healthy solution to many of our home needs; it is known as an Eco-Enzyme. Tangentially related to compost, eco-enzymes can provide a clean alternative to household cleaners, laundry detergent, pesticides, toothpaste and so much more. I am currently assisting Tri with drafting an informational packet that can be given to anyone who has a goal for sustainability and a chemical free home. 



Deirdre moved to Bali over 30 years ago after spending a year abroad from her school in Florida, USA. After years of doing her day job in design, she invested in a plot of land high in the Grunung Batukau mountains where she grows coffee. This land is so raw that it doesn’t have a proper map in order to streamline its maintenance. With a team we were able to compile a rough map of the property along with a count of most of the coffee trees. With further data and renderings I will help provide an in-depth graphic of her property, making future projects more achievable. 



Chakra has a huge heart; he has taken on the responsibility of cleaning up Bali and providing anyone who desires a more sustainable infrastructure a team to accomplish it. Chakra is an amazing teacher; he uses his gift of storytelling and background in applicable technology to spread his knowledge far and wide: a documentary team in Canada, a permaculture organization in Cambodia, schools in Australia. He has a vision for the future and works to inspire adaptations in technology around the globe. His projects have inspired even the most reputable of permaculture activists. However, not all who encounter him have the background to understand his vision: volunteers with no previous experience in earth science, ‘pilgrims’ who are more focused on the scenery than the story behind it, locals who are too distracted with their community to properly invest. With my background I have provided Chakra with a kindred sounding board, reminding him that he isn’t fighting alone. Reminding him that he does not have to have all the tools in order to fix everything. 

I get a lot of questions from people wondering how they can do better for the environment, those who see the news and feel the dread of how humanity’s simple existence and advancement has turned earth into a floating cesspool of potential nuclear warfare in space filled with plastic seas. I also get a lot of gratitude from those I share my story with, reminding me that the task I have taken on and dedicated my entire life to is a big one – arguably the biggest one on the planet. This is interesting mostly because I did not do that well in school; I’m dyslexic, making my chemistry, math, and physics courses especially difficult. However it appears my grasp of the applicable concepts has allowed me to be a part of a dialogue that is making a movement in a more realistic manner. You see, traditionally scientists aren’t very easy to communicate with; they’re so smart, and their breakdown of concepts are so complex that often they isolate themselves to their research, but that’s not how real change gets done. My perspective has reached a plethora of individuals, and for an environmentalist, that’s all I could ask for.                                                                                                                         This project has achieved all that was promised and all that was expected of my time here in Bali: cultural submersion, real life perspectives of the islands, political disruptions, agricultural practices, but what I was not expecting was the rattling perspective of how tourism has affected the island and culture. I believe that an experience like this is the only real way someone can truly experience Bali, and would recommend this to anyone with plans to visit. However I would warn them of a few challenges: 

  • Learning to drive a moped here with no experience is like throwing a lvl. 1 character into a den full of lvl. 15 players. You will struggle, and it will be overwhelming; on my first outing on the scooter I crashed into a tree and was only stopped by a ditch – all three of us were damaged, the tree, the scooter, and me (mildly; walking away with a 12in bruise across my thigh). Freedom is not right at your fingertips, so beware.
  • There are hundreds of different languages in Indonesia, studying some Indonesian may prove to be beneficial and is spoken by most, however you will encounter a lot of Bahasa as well, and there are no resources for learning it other than a local. There will also be plenty of confusion surrounding languages, you will be corrected over and over again by people from all over the world about what is really spoken here. Ultimately you will learn key terms in many different languages and that is okay. The Balinese people are some of the most welcoming and understanding people I have ever met: when you smile, they smile; you will often get ‘hello’s from children; if you get into an accident you will be surrounded by those willing to help; if you do not understand the language they will do their best to communicate and teach you. 
    • Side note: I have also never felt safer, while there was one instance where I was walking home from an event down a dark street and saw a group of men walking towards me (they were just walking home, they didn’t even acknowledge me). I only locked my door when I left town, I often slept with my door open (due to the dog I had briefly ‘adopted’), and when I went to the bathroom at restaurants I never felt the need to take my belongings. An extreme contrast to how I feel in my home country, the United States.
  • Last, bring a mosquito net. Just do. 


The impact that this project makes on the field is: cleaner water, sewage mediation, land rehabilitation, animal welfare, sustainable construction, community advocacy, sustainable food sources, and cultural preservation. Asking whether this project makes an impact on the field is a simple one: yes, and I am proud to have been a part of it. Without I Made Chakra’s projects and team, Bali would be all the more vulnerable to those who take advantage of their environment and people. With my background in Environmental Geoscience I was a clear asset to the team and I have since been requested for multiple consultations since the project has concluded. 

Don’t Think, Just Jump.

Every single aspect of this project impacts its community directly. The minute that we provide them with payment, they send that money all over the community: to build schools, to provide supplies for volunteer lessons, to pay for taxis, food donations, and so much more. With the Green Lion in this village the local economy has gone up by 75 times.

I feel like I could have made a larger impact with this project had I had a larger community of people dedicated to the same goal/project. You see, I was the sole Environmental Educator in this organization for two weeks, as well as the only one with a scientific background. So, in witnessing pesticide spraying, trash burning, inappropriate segregation of waste, I had little say in how the foundations practices were conducted. I say this because when volunteers wanted to provide the students with treats, we could not, because with the implementation of the healthcare program at the Green Lion it would be hypocritical to hand out sweets to students. Do you see my point? The large Healthcare program has a bigger impact on the community than the minuscule Environmental program. This isn’t to put blame on the Green Lion however, this is more of a reflection on Bali’s environmental waste initiatives (minus the use of chemicals on landscaping). 

All of these things have been a challenge, however I did not come here to criticize the Green Lion or fix Bali, I came to challenge myself. I wanted to teach so that I could test that skill set and learn how to be more impactful in policy and the Environmental activist community. That I did, I learned that I do not have the independent brainstorming capability to design and develop teaching opportunities to young people. To be fair, I did not speak their language (even though I was able to learn a functional amount of Indonesian) and I do not know their history with Environmental knowledge; it became clear over time that most of the students in my classes had an understanding of most of the things I was trying to teach them, things such as: air pollution, water pollution, plant health, trash burning, and more. This provided challenges on their own because how could I then challenge them to expand their knowledge base? Now I know what you’re thinking: did the Green Lion not provide a curriculum to follow? Well you would be right in asking, because they did. They gave me a book that included dozens of lessons that I could teach them in order for them to get to know their environment better. However, the lessons largely included things like crude oil, and sustainable energy amperage. I struggled to develop workable lessons with those concepts when I did not have a translator with me the entire time. It was not until I finally had a partner on the project that I finally felt like I had some direction that did not feel completely overwhelming, this was after two weeks. Prior to that I had tried watering plants, making fly traps, picking up trash (that barely made an impact), and planting plants. Afterwards, we did environmental bingo, scavenger hunts, relay races, paper recycling, and poster making. I persevered, but it did not feel as effective as it could have been.

Through all of this, I genuinely just wanted to quit. Seeing all of the other programs that were offered, like construction, turtle conservation, English teaching, and even adventure weeks, I just wanted to move on. I am proud of my perseverance; with only missing two days due to travel plans and visa renewal, I got through four weeks of environmental education teaching in Bali, Indonesia to students that barely speak my language. This was my expectation, along with sleeping in a dorm. 

I would recommend this program to others, absolutely. The Green Lion is a phenomenal program in Bali, with its only downfall being not properly providing information to Global Nomadic for those that sign up through them. The Green Lion opens up opportunities to meet other solo travelers in Bali, which allows you to have more cost efficient adventures (being that these activities are not funded by the Green Lion, but ourselves) around the island. For instance, there were several instances where on the weekend 3-5 girls, including myself, would rent out villas around indonesia and experience something none of us would do on our own, such as: swimming with dolphins, snorkeling with sea turtles, jumping off of waterfalls, exploring rice fields, going to the beaches in Uluwatu, all of which have commutes upwards of three hours to get there. I’ve seen some unforgettable things with these people and wouldn’t trade them for the world. Ultimately, you just need to jump.

Journalism Internship

I am incredibly satisfied with how this project went. There were initially some organisational issues regarding my placement and for the first 2 weeks of the internship I was placed in a hospital/University rather than a TV station as I had originally requested. This was a nice surprise as I had not expected to learn so much about Traditional Mongolian Medicine which afforded me a deep insight into Mongolia’s traditional heritage. I feel I was able to make a profound impact on the University through my article which was published in the Medical Journal and through my personal engagement with the students. During my third week I was placed at the ‘MNB’, where I felt a greater sense of belonging with the work and wished I could have been placed there earlier. However, there were complications with my entry permit to the building as it is guarded by the military. I was then moved again to ‘Tenger TV’ which was the highlight of my placement. I formed a special bond with the journalists there and was sad that only 3 days of my placement were with this team. I am incredibly proud of my successes in the work I did at ‘Tenger’, creating 2 original reports and anchoring them. My report on Ulaanbaatar’s traffic jams has garnered significant online views and continues to spark conversations about one of the city’s most pressing issues. I did not expect to engage in such impactful work and left feeling incredibly satisfied. I was not prepared for the challenges I encountered with food. I had requested a ‘wheat free’ diet as I have a wheat allergy and this was not accommodated. I struggled to communicate my dietary needs with my host family as there were limited options and I did not want to offend them. I was not given any other options to find food which suited my needs and had to seek these out myself which didn’t happen for quite a few days.

I would recommend this project to a friend.

Healthcare Education in FIJI

Bula (Hello)!!My name is Amnah, and I was working as a volunteer in a school in Fiji, teaching students about healthcare and other subjects while also taking care of the children and teaching them other subjects.

Before visiting Fiji, everyone talks about “Fiji time,” but once you get off the plane, you actually feel it. In those three weeks, letting go of punctuality (Fiji time) was one of my obstacles in adjusting to change. Making connections with instructors and students was another struggle, but as the days go by, it comes naturally. In order to ensure that change occurs among the children, teachers need to put up more effort in their conversations with parents. It was occasionally difficult to control the students and keep the classroom in order. Some students made the class progress slowly and required more attention, and it was difficult to divert the focus of the more intelligent students with other activities. It was difficult to explain several medical concepts to younger children. In the end, everything appeared to go according to plan.

I would say that from preschool to grade 4 at Rock Church Academy in Sigatoka, Fiji, I learned teaching skills, experience creating timetables, and a true understanding of what it’s like to be a teacher. Additionally, I adore Indian culture and was already aware that there are Indians living in Fiji as a result of British colonialism in that country and the relocation of Indians there for labor. However, reality far exceeded my expectations; I have formed wonderful friendships and felt more Indian than ever. The best part of my vacation was connecting with Indian children, parents, instructors, and locals as well as Fiji as a whole. I actually was a student myself in expanding my Hindi language and now I have some knowledge on the written alphabet. I had to grab this opportunity.

I feel proud of myself for staying dedicated to my volunteer work, developing my communication skills, being open to new experiences, and learning to deal with whatever the day may bring. If you enjoy touring Fiji and its islands, the Tom Hanks movie site Castaway Island, and river tubing, I would strongly recommend these activities. Fiji offers CHEAP MOVIE tickets! Most importantly, if you would want to inform children about critical healthcare issues and ensure a healthy community, then this position is for you if you believe you can make it better or if you merely enjoy helping students and teachers!

Enjoy every moment- Fiji you have taken my breath away.

Vinaka (Thank You).