Sam is pictured standing in middle of the back row with her fellow CapilanoU student volunteers.
I have been travelling pretty extensively for the last ten years. Whenever I had the opportunity I would save, plan, pack and go. Before the Vietnam trip I hadn't travelled for a year so one could imagine how excited and honoured I was wen I was selected as a student volunteer. With a full course load and working two new jobs I jumped right in!

An informal meeting in the Lao Chai.
Looking back on this past winter; the hours I stressed over not doing enough for the project, working too much, and my studies, at the time it felt like the end of the world. The experience of barely seeing the light at the end of the tunnel can be daunting.

Well, I did it! I reached the end of the tunnel, and damn it was awesome! Vietnam was amazing. Not only am I walking away with a new outlook, I have developed a new sense of humility and a incredible appreciation for the access to opportunities as a Canadian.

Some of the amazing women in Lao Chai. 
The women in the village taught me more than I could have ever brought to them as a member of the CBT Vietnam team. I owe them more then words can ever explain, and the only way to do right by them is to bring this knowledge and personal change and use it in the future. As my 440 Paper (the final graduating paper for my Tourism Management Degree) comes around I plan to use this and start my next chapter. I hope to find a female mentor with experience in community development, learn from her, and research a subject around females in tourism.

Looking forward to new challenges, opportunities and experiences. Thank you CapilanoU, CBT Vietnam, and the PATA Foundation




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