Before some of our SALT (Serving And Learning Together) participants departed for their year of service, we asked them how they were feeling. We asked them again, now that they have arrived home! Check out their photos below and find out some of the things they learned as well as their advice for future SALTers.
What I learned while serving with SALT:
“I definitely have learned that life is not linear. So it’s important to lean in, listen and learn from Jesus.”
–Julie Heisey from Orrstown, PA, who served as a capacity building assistant in Rwanda
“I’ve learned the world is big and the diversity within it is beautiful. The body of Christ is beautiful because of its diversity.”
–Lexi Lambert, from Chantilly, VA, who served as a childcare and office assistant in Bolivia
“I learned that there are a lot of injustices or sad things in the world, but God is still present, still loving His people and still at work.”
–Allison Alexander, from Weyers Cave, VA, who served as a community builder in Republic of Korea (South)
“I learned how to slow down, make the most of relationships and experienced how healthcare is done in a new part of the world.”
–Melissa Jantzi, from Harrisonburg, VA, who served as a nursing teacher assistant in Zambia
“[I learned] the sun will rise and the sun will set—there is only so much I can worry about or do. I’ll cross the bridge when I get there. Don’t force the situation; be patient.”
–Samuel Miller, from Kidron, OH, who served as an English language teacher in Laos
Advice for future SALTers:
“Be flexible and ready to adapt in your workplace. The work you end up doing might not be what you expected.”
–Joia McManus, from Upper Darby, PA, who served as a project assistant in Bolivia
“Be open with friends, family and coworkers. Be intentional about learning your host culture and making actions which show you are learning at least the small things. The people of that country will appreciate even those small actions and they will open up and welcome you very warmly.”
–Micah Houston, from State College, PA, who served as a project assistant in Rwanda
“Every experience you’re about to have is valuable. Enjoy every moment of it and don’t allow small things during the process to distract you from the main goal.”
–Edith Rodriquez, from Aibonito, Puerto Rico, who served as a hospital nurse in Nigeria
“Focus on relationship building rather than accomplishing tasks! Don’t be scared to take initiative in starting conversations, building relationships and spending time with people who give you life.”
–Nina Camillone, from Shoreham, NY, who served as a community development assistant in Nepal
Serving And Learning Together (SALT) is a unique year-long cross-cultural immersion experience for Christian young adults from the U.S. and Canada, ages 18-30, sponsored by Mennonite Central Committee (MCC).
During their assignments SALTers are immersed in another culture, living with host families or communal settings such as dormitories or teacher housing in Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin and Central America and the Middle East.