4 years ago, if you asked me if I’d like to pursue international missions I’d certainly say no and even if I was given the opportunity to do such, I would most likely turn down such an offer. Yet, everything changed for me during college. It's funny because I entered college as a biology major with the plans to be an optometrist, but it only took me a semester to realize how bad I am at science, lol, and so then social work became the new plan.
During my freshman year of college, I participated in a weeklong service trip, with only the intention of getting service credits, with my school to Mexico over Thanksgiving break. That was the very first time I ever got introduced to and participated in relational ministry with also getting the opportunity to do such with children in an orphanage.
After that experience, I enjoyed it so much that I wanted to do it again the following year. It was after that second trip that I had the desire to participate in longer-termed service as my previous experiences were only a weeklong and two days were solely dedicated to travel.
At the end of my sophomore year, I got the opportunity to participate in a month-long trip to Uganda where I would get to continue to work with children in orphanages, work at a school, and help the local community. And even after that trip I still had the desire to have further involvement in international service and so the following year I got the opportunity to go to Thailand for a month-long time where my team and I learned about human trafficking and the sex industry and help organizations combat against such.
While in Thailand, my team and I got to visit a facility that was created by a person from the United States for women who wish to leave the sex industry. This place provides housing, education, any emotional support they need and sets them up for a different career path. When talking to the founder of the facility, my team and I found out that she was only planning on being in Thailand for 2 years but, when we were there, she had now been there for over 15 years! I thought that contrast of initial plans vs. actuality (His plans) was amazing and so it really posed the question to me of “I wonder what 2 years of international missions could do for me?” and it was after such that I wanted to hit the green light on such!
And so here I am now, a recent college graduate with a Bachelors of Social Work who is now about to head to East Asia in January for 2 plus years to partake in works that will provide assistance to children in foster care who in particular are known to be differently-abled and aid in the process of having adults fostering them.
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