Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Farewell Post from Julia Taladay (Art Relief International)

I just finished my last day of work at Art Relief International! I can’t believe my time in Thailand is over, I enjoyed every minute that I spent here, but I know it’s time to go home. Luckily, I know I’m not really leaving anything behind. Every experience here has had a huge impact on me, to the point where I could almost feel myself changing with every day that passed. Hopefully my friends will still like me when I get back!

It’s hard to realize what kind of an impact you have on people’s lives until it’s time to say goodbye. Working at ARI, I’ve met and worked with so many different groups during my time here, and I’ve had to say goodbye to everyone with each workshop. I’ve been saying goodbye for a week and a half now. It’s been so eye opening to see just how much we mean to some of our workshop participants. In most cases, people who I feel like I haven’t had a huge connection with surprised me with a really emotional and elaborate goodbye. When I think about it, I only spent an hour or two with each group of participants a week. It doesn’t seem like that much to me, and the art activities that we did with them weren’t monumental, but the opportunity that we give to our participants to focus on art and creativity must have a positive impact on them, even if we can’t always see it. It’s good to know that the hard work and time that we put into are workshops are so greatly appreciated.

I truly loved Thailand, but I'm excited to see what life has in store for me once I go home, too. Perhaps I will be able to come back and see all the people who have helped make my summer an experience of a lifetime. If not, I'll always have them in my memory and close to my heart.

Homeward bound,


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