“Global Citizenship Camp & Human Library”

Last summer (2015) I took part in my second workcamp abroad, this time with SCI Hellas. I wanted a destination that was far away and different from back home, so, I chose Hong Kong, because I had never been in Asia before and because the project running there seemed very interesting and something I would enjoy being part of and offering my help. The title of the workcamp was “Global Citizenship Camp & Human Library”. It’s first part was a Human Library event that took place in various primary and secondary schools in many different areas of Hong Kong (Hong Kong Island, Kowloon and New Territories). In this event, I was one of the “Human Books” of the Library, with the title “Experience Greece with fun!”. I had never participated in a Human Library before so, I was a bit anxious about what to expect, what I would have to do exactly and so on. My fears were soon unfounded, as the young students started coming in the classroom and sitting in the chairs in front of each Human Book. The opportunity to speak about your ‘book’, by showing postcards and sharing stories and tidbits, while watching the students as they followed your word and became animated in discussion, was really great.

The second part of the project, the International Global Education Workcamp, took place at the United College of the Chinese University of Hong Kong. We were divided into groups of 10 youth (from 5 different secondary schools in Hong Kong) and the volunteers were responsible for guiding each team throughout the various workshops planned in the workcamp (art workshop, self-awareness workshop, stereotypes discussion workshop etc). Here, we had the opportunity to get to know the students a bit better, speak with them more and engage them in conversation. The culmination of our efforts in this workcamp was realized at the end of our stay at the Chinese University, where we had our ‘Cultural Night’: each team would present something unique about the country/countries of the volunteers/leaders of the groups and the students, in their turn, would present their school through dances and songs. It was a beautiful event and everyone had so much fun, participating in and then watching each group as they performed their piece.

I had an amazing time in Hong Kong and I feel grateful that I lived this experience, in a country so far from home but so unique and different from anything I had ever seen before. The skyscrapers, the food, the people and their habits, so many things that, all together, added in the diversity and the beauty of this country in the far east. I will treasure the memories of this workcamp and will look back at my time there with fondness and joy, for I had one of the most amazing experiences in my life there.

Emily