When I was preparing for my exchange to Sweden last year, I heard about the Queen Elizabeth II (QEII) Diamond Jubilee Scholarship. I remember being in awe of it’s’ recipients, thinking I would never have what it takes to be awarded with that opportunity. I didn’t think much else of it, finding satisfaction that I was going out on exchange and that I didn’t need the QEII experience – until one day, I decided I did.
In November of 2016, the applications for the QEII came out. I applied, thinking that the worst thing that could happen was that I wasn’t selected. Fast forward to December, where I found out I was chosen as one of the recipients for the summer of 2017. The next part was trying to choose a place to complete my 90 day internship.
Africa has been on my bucket list for as long as I can remember. In fact, Facebook recently notified of a post that I made in 2015 about trying to find an experience in which I could travel to Africa and volunteer. Fast forward 2 years later, and that dream is finally coming true.
With my QEII experience, I chose to complete with the World University Service of Canada, CECI and Uniterra. I completed a Skype interview with the team from Ottawa and Montreal, and was told I would know in 10-15 days if and where I would be going. Let me tell you – those were the longest 13 days of my life. This morning, I had an email in my inbox offering me a position in Moshi, Tanzania, working as a Communication and Documentation officer for Mtando was Vikundi vya Wakulima Tanzania-Kilimanjaro.
This is the first step on my journey. My first step as a QEII recipient. My first step as a humanitarian. My first step in my dream to Africa.
Africa, I’m ready for you. See you in 6 weeks.