Thursday, January 26, 2012

We Need to Know: Emma Is Going to Benin

When I first started this blog, one of my main ideas was, not only for it to be a place where I collect and share what I like in the design world, but more so to find and share this idea of a balanced life. Where you enjoy life but give back as well. I'm going to start including more news features and global featured stories on here under the feature name 'We Need To Know'! Because sometimes, among the glitz and glamour we need a reality check, just to take a step back and view things in perspective!

What a better way to start the feature than with this story?! One of my close friends is going to Benin, a small country neighboring Nigeria with The Humanity Exchange in March! 


Here's her story in her own words:

"My name is Emma. I am half Serbian and half American and I have lived in Dubai, UAE for the past 6 years. I graduated High School in 2011 and I am currently pursuing a gap year. 

The most exciting part of my gap year is my upcoming trip to Benin with a programme called The Humanity Exchange. For those of you who don't know, Benin is a small West African country that is sandwiched between Togo to the West and Nigeria to the East.
 I will be staying in the voodoo capital, Ouidah, a small city close to the capital of Benin, Cotonou. As Benin is a francophone country I will be studying French in order to be able to communicate with the locals and more importantly, the orphaned children I will be taking care of during my stay.  

 I will be with children of all ages who have been abandoned or whose families are simply too poor to care for them. A lot of these children have lived on the streets and have been abused or prostituted and others are handicapped or living with HIV/AIDS.

I will help care for, teach, and run extra-curricular activities for the children and I would love to be able to bring with me certain staple goods such as clothing (shirts, long skirts, pants, and sneakers) and school supplies to provide to the orphaned children. 

I will be staying in Benin for two months and my trip is to commence on the 9th of March! I have a whole slur of emotions running through me as the date to my departure nears, nervousness, anticipation, and anxiety to name a few, but I know that this trip will change my life in an unimaginable way and I am excited for my journey ahead.  "

LVP will definitely be interview Emma once she's back!

Follow her Blog: Mon Voyage En Afrique to find out all about
her adventures, both before and during the trip. While she's
there, she will be updating her blog with photos and diaries!

If you're in Dubai, also keep up with the blog so that you
can be aware of opportunities to send certain things for the children there, 
and/or make a donation. Every little bit helps!

When you have nothing, something can be everything!

After her trip, Emma will start her undergraduate journey and New York's esteemed Barnard College of Columbia in Fall. And after her gap year, she would've learned two languages (Arabic & French), been on a journey that will affect many lives for the better, and gained work experience through internship here in Dubai! It's an honor to have a person like Emma talking to the readers of LVP!

Don't forget to check out her blog & I will see you guys soon!

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