By Emily Stanley
Today I opened the mailbox to find a letter from Nepal. The letter was from my 16-year-old host sister, the daughter of the family that so kindly took us in during Edge of Seven’s recent volunteer trip to Phuleli. Just seeing the envelope brought back such fond memories of our visit.
My husband (Ben Stanley) and I, along with Edge of Seven’s Board Chair (Sarah Andrews) and Edge of Seven’s Architect (Travis Hughbanks), stayed with the Principal of the Phuleli Secondary School and his amazing family. They treated us like family, shared the stories of their lives, and laughed with us over many cups of “dudh chia” or milk tea.
Sarala, one of three children in the family, spoke English quite well and promised to write. To me, her letter is a reminder of just how “real” a volunteer experience can be. And how, in just a short amount of time, it is possible to make connections with people whose lives are so similar and yet so strikingly different from your own.
Sarala is a very bright student with a love for nature and the arts. Stay tuned for her story in an upcoming interview.