Respond to Every call that excites your spirit by Kristophina Shilongo

I had a deep, piercing and urgent calling in my spirit to live beyond how I was living. It’s an amazing feeling to know that you are about to be changed. Being lost in service to others will leave you scared for life. The type of scares that you’d take pride in for having.
Wanderlust (n):
A strong desire or urge to wander or travel and explore the world.
Volunteer (n):
A person who does small things with great love. They are paid in smiles.

For 6 weeks I did the most heart thrusting and life fulfilling things at the same time. Wrapped in a beautiful but scary experience called volunteerism.

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I’ve met volunteers before, many from The United States of America and Germany. The misconception is that they are rich, bored or both. I too believed so. The concept of working for free and beyond the comfort and safety of your own country never made sense to me. Why would any sane person live in a village somewhere in Africa to teach kids who might not even understand the importance or relevance of education? Funny how the tables have turned, I’ve been handed a new set of eyes.

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As you can imagine, I had utopia like expectations of my stay in Mozambique. Early morning jogs to the beach before work, late night swims, endless conversations about life and our experiences with the countless number of people I would meet. And most importantly working with the most adorable kids in the world. Firstly, the internet betrayed my trust and secondly reality has no mercy. It hit me, hard!

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Although my (somewhat unrealistic) expectations were not met. I take with me the greatest life experience. When working with entities or companies there are some misunderstandings and miscommunications, AIESEC was no exception. It’s is impressive though the passion that the members served with. I cannot express how much the people I met have changed my perception of the world, of life and mostly importantly of myself.

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The most challenging thing about being in Mozambique for me was finally meeting me. I stared at myself, flaws and strengths. It was painful but it was essentially, looking at myself as if I were somebody else allowed me identify my flaws so that I can work on them and use my strengths effectively.

Mozambique is a beautiful country. I’ve enjoyed my stay so much I plan to return for a minimum of 12 months.

In conclusion, I’m thankful for the cultural experiences that have painted a new worldview for me. I’ll forever treasure the skills that no University will ever teach me and the history lessons that no History book will ever give justice to.

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