WUSC works towards a world in which all young people can grow up in safe, secure and supportive environments; have access to high quality education opportunities from early childhood to adulthood; are able to secure fair, decent and fulfilling employment; and can actively participate in all aspects of their society's development.
Every year through WUSC's Student Refugee Program (SRP), Brandon University sponsors a student from a refugee camp in Kenya, Malawi, or Thailand to come and gain a post-secondary education. It is these students that have continually changed my life over the past eight years. Each and every one of them climbs in and finds a comfortable place in my heart to call their own. The cross-cultural awareness that my eyes and mind have been opened up to is unfathomable and indescribable. All I can say over and over and over again is that WUSC and the SRP and these men and women have changed my life, made me a better person, taught me about humility, and renewed my faith in humanity time and time again.
When I meet them for the first time they are quite timid, so very thin, and incredibly thankful. The timidness slowly fades away as time passes and so does the thinness, but they never cease to be thankful for the opportunity to study in Canada, for the opportunity to change their lives, for the opportunity to have a real future. In actuality, though, it is I who am thankful. Thankful to know what it means to be a Muslim in Somalia, thankful to hear stories about witch doctors in South Sudan, thankful to taste real Ethiopian injera, so thankful to have these epitomes of the human spirit in my life.
Their success is my success. Their pride is my pride. Their happiness is my happiness. Their lives are my life.
I've been volunteering with WUSC at Brandon University for eight years. I'm leaving for Fredericton and the University of New Brunswick (UNB) in a few short months. As soon as I made up my mind to accept UNB's offer, I immediately contacted the WUSC committee at UNB Fredericton and got put on their mailing list. No matter where this world takes me, WUSC will always be a part of my life.