Talk about adventurous! American Youth Leadership Program participants Julianne and Nora decided to sample some fried ants and scorpions for their celebratory last dinner in Singapore.
We’re not so sure if we could stomach it, but their consensus? “Surprisingly delicious!”
Our American Youth Leadership Program Singapore & Malaysia group is not on the typical tour around Singapore. How many Americans get to visit an incinerator plant on their trip to Southeast Asia? We’re guessing not many!
Our participants learned a lot, though, and had some fun with it as well. We can’t believe their trip is almost over!
Another wonderful reflection from one of our American Youth Leadership Program participants, about visiting an orphanage in Malaysia.
This photo was taken by a special girl in the orphanage we visited outside of KL. The two of us developed a bond from the time we arrived in the orphanage. She tugged on my skirt and brought me to a place where I could do a craft with her and her friends. Although she didn’t speak English and I barely got her to tell me her name, we learned how to communicate without using any words. We spoke through facial expressions and gestures that particularly caused her to smile and giggle. Once she saw my camera, she had a field day of taking plenty of pictures of whatever she wanted to take and then viewing the picture later (and you could see a feeling of accomplishment on her face.) Just simple activities that most of us don’t appreciate, these kids never took for granted. You could see beams of happiness radiating from their smiles as they learned origami and played with us. It was a very special moment of just giving back and loving on kids that normally don’t get special one on one attention. I’ll always look back on going to this orphanage and remember that I should be thankful everyday for the way I’ve been brought up and that giving back is the greatest accomplishment in life.
Sam and I went on a fantastic adventure to a local Buddhist temple. The temple was not only home to an actual temple of worship but also contained a concert hall which held odd functions such as a dance competition. I thought it was interesting how the temple made an effort to monetize their prestige.
I personally was shocked, though I realize similar practices happen with churches and synagogues in the US. I also enjoyed the views of KL that the temple provided.
By Noah Gallant
Read some more of the AYLP Singapore & Malaysia participants’ first impressions of Malaysia on their AYLP Blog Tumblr!
Our American Youth Leadership (AYLP) Singapore & Malaysia group visited Malaysia’s Batu Caves yesterday. Not only is it one of the most popular Hindu sites outside of India, but Batu also happens to be known for one other thing — the many macaque monkeys that roam the grounds!
At their orientation the students had said they wanted to see monkeys, and monkeys they did see!
Our American Youth Leadership (AYLP) Singapore & Malaysia group just spent the past weekend living with local families in a village in Negeri Sembilan, a Malaysian state south of Kuala Lumpur. During their homestays, the participants had a chance to live like the locals: visiting their host families’ businesses, playing with their host siblings, taking excursions, and — of course — eating lots of Malaysian food with their host families!
Day one in Malaysia and our American Youth Leadership (AYLP) Singapore & Malaysia group has already met the U.S. Ambassador to Malaysia Paul Jones and many other “interesting people doing fascinating and important work in the international field” (in the words of AYLP participant Mare Stewart) at a 4th of July celebration and dinner at the American Embassy in Kuala Lumpur. Talk about impressive!
— It hasn’t really sunk in yet for Manchester High School junior Sam Robbins that he’ll be spending a month traveling in Singapore and Malaysia. Read more.
— Rosie, 2012 American Youth Leadership Program with Japan participant
Our 2012 American Youth Leadership Program with Japan students & teachers. This group of 30-plus participants are now working to implement educational and service projects in their schools and communities across the United States.
Know a high school student or teacher interested in this funded opportunity? We are administering a similar American Youth Leadership Program to Singapore & Malaysia beginning in 2013.
We’re looking for high school students interested in the sciences to bring with us to Singapore & Malaysia in Summer ‘13. Introducing the American Youth Leadership Program with Singapore and Malaysia. Learn more at culturalvistas.org/aylp
The 2012 American Youth Leadership Program sent 30 U.S. high school students and three teachers to Japan this past summer for three weeks of living, learning, and exploring the ‘Land of the Rising Sun’.