By: Lisa-Melanie Kaluza Levy
Today, I have finished travelling almost halfway around the world with my new Skillcorps colleagues! After the inspiring and thought provoking orientation provided by the wonderful team at Global Autism Project headquarters, we are all excited to contribute to this international cause in a sustainable way.
Flights were our first big challenge; as new aquaintances, we traveled from New York to Frankfurt followed by a second flight to finally arrive at Delhi. The first important realization we had was to integrate the idea that we are a team at all times. Suddenly, we must be vigilant of each member of our team and be mindful of everyone’s needs. This is a necessary and difficult adjustment for professionals who are used to working independently. The long flights, as well as the jet lag, allowed us to identify our weaknesses rather quickly and to communicate them to our collegues to best live our communal experience.
We noticed an impressive military presence in the airport terminals and in the pick-up areas. After passing through immigration, we were ready to roll and find our driver. There was slight misunderstanding and it took a while to find him. Finding our hotel was the next challenge and we made our way there in the wee hours of the morning.
We rapidly determined the difference between the tourism star systems here in India and Canada or the United States. The customs of personal hygiene and bathroom design reflect the country’s resources and also demonstrate a dedication to preserving them. It was a bit of a culture shock to some.
Just the travel experience has revealed to us the degree of flexibility we must adopt to make ourselves comfortable in our host country. An open-minded attitude is essential to the success of our experience!
We cannot wait to see the landscape of Dehli and Agra and above all the Taj Mahal!
The lessons of a simple trip have already had a profound impact in orienting our sensitivities to embark upon our mandate in Bangalore. We are excited to put into practice our new ideas for sustainable development and encourage all of ASHA’s efforts. Adventure awaits!