A Time of Growth

 In Volunteer Exchange

By Priscilla | Volunteer Exchange Program

Being in Germany, I have grown in every area.  I have a growing sense of what it means to be here as a Latina, and trying to the best version they can see of Colombia, learning to be pro-active, to give much more than I thought I had, to know God on a deeper level, at the level of loneliness, to enjoy the company of people without understanding what they say, to sacrifice my comfort to connect with people, to pay the price of my dreams, and I have developed a different level of relationship with my family and church.

Apart from these personal accomplishments, I have gotten rid of many of the stereotypes I have had about Europe, Germany, Germans and refugees. One of these stereotypes that I have rejected is to think that all people in Germany are rich and therefore are happy but in Germany there are also people who do not have enough money, there are people who are totally alone and who suffer just as in our country. It is therefore the small thing of time that they value most. Accompanying a celebration, being part of simple events, sitting down to talk, or simply giving them a smile and a hug is more valuable than anything else.

Another stereotype that I have rejected is the low self-esteem that we (Colombians and Latinos) have had for decades.  Never in my life have I felt more proud of my origins as in these five months. We have so much human wealth and resources that only in the distance it is understood, our culture has created a simple and kind people, who are measured by everything; who do not stray. Now I do not get tired of inviting people to dare and travel to Colombia because God has given us so much to complement a culture as different as the German one.

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