My favourite thing about Zambia was getting to meet so many happy, loving and caring people. Everywhere we went people were all so welcoming to us even though we were different and no one ever made us feel outcast. Even just walking down the street or at the market random people welcomed us to their county and wished us a great time while we stayed there. It was great to meet such a variety of different people of all ages and different backgrounds and learning about their life style and their ways of living.
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The hardest thing about the trip for me was been away from my friends and family, even though it was only ten days I missed them ridiculously. This trip really put it into perspective for me that I’m super lucky to have my friends and especially all the family that I do around me, as some of the children at the schools that we met were orphans or lived with other family members away from their mums and dads just so they could go to school in Zambia and have a full education. Another thing that I found difficult about the trip was eating Zambian food. I tried my best to try some Zambian food that we got offered but because I’m quite a fussy eater found it difficult to have food I actually enjoyed. A lot of the food was quite basic like vegetables with rice, potatoes and beans along with meats like chicken on the bone or chunks of beef. They also had this thing called Nshima which was a Zambian speciality which they ate with most meals, it looks like mash but its a completely different texture and does not taste like mash whatsoever. I didn’t like this either.
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The most difficult thing to see while we was over there for me was the reality of how little the people actually have there in comparison to what we have. The living conditions are so poor there and the country itself is just living in horrendous poverty. When I first saw the reality of how bad it actually was compared to the idea I had in my head about it was truly heart breaking. To know people just the same as us are having to live the way they do is devastating. Visiting the compound areas of Zambia were the most shocking definitely, I was speech less. Most families living in the compound had houses the sizes of most of our living rooms and multiple people will live in there and sleep in there. These houses would have windows but no glass and most wouldn’t even have a toilet. But every single person we met over there seemed genuinely so happy and content with their lives and were so grateful for what they had. The people in Zambia appreciated everything and it was completely eye opening.
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I really learnt a lot about myself this trip along with a whole new part of the world and how blind we are to how other people in our world are living. I don’t think we will never truly understand until you are there experiencing it yourselves. This trip definitely made me appreciate what I have, not just materialistic things but my family, friends and time I have with people.
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For others thinking of going the only advice I could give would be prepared for the variety of things you are going to experience. Just take in everything you whiteness, the stories you are told and the amazing people you are going to meet. You will make memories you will cherish for a lifetime. This was an experience of a life time, we made memories that will last forever and I couldn’t imagine doing it with anyone else other than the team I went with.