International Global Citizen's Award

encouraging young people to become better global citizens

Reflections on the Award from Mariela, El Salvador

Mariela has just finished grade 9 in her school in El Salvador. Below is her final relfection on her participation in the Award.

If you were to compare me to what I was at the start of the school year and what I am right now you will notice great change. If I hadn’t chosen the IGCA as my extracurricular, I wouldn’t have been concerned about what is going on in the world. The IGCA encouraged me to participate in fun activities that at the same time contribute to the save the earth. I think that the youth needs to realize that our culture is something to appreciate and that the earth needs our help. The IGCA has made me realize about all of these vital issues.

My experience at the IGCA has been very positive. The activities we’ve done in this team have made me concern that it is time to act and do something to stop global warming, extinction and deforestation. In the IGCA we are performing small steps but I believe these small steps are the ones that will create the base for making a better community. Therefore being in the IGCA is the climb to a better community.

Recycling is not only an activity done here in IGCA, in my house I have also influenced my family. I managed to inform my family about recycling. Currently we started collecting plastic bottles which I am planning to bring and place them in the recycling bins that we have in the school.

The IGCA also encouraged me to influence my friends. When we started doing the cloth campaign and helping other communities like the flood victims, I had the idea to do the same in my tutor group. So I arranged a visit to an orphanage that I know very well, in a Usulután. We collected certain things like rice, beans, powder milk, hygiene product, etc. and hopefully we are going to take these to the children this Wednesday as a tutor group. As you can see I had the opportunity to start an activity by myself and I feel proud because this makes me a better citizen and an example for others. I couldn’t have done this activity with my tutor group if I didn’t sign up for the IGCA because I consider that the IGCA is the motor of what I do.

With the IGCA I feel engaged with the world. I feel I am doing something that will help the world. Maybe changes are not seen right now but I am sure that I will make a big change.

In my opinion the best activity which I have enjoyed the most is the cultural awareness. This activity in particular has left in me the biggest reflection that will stay in me I hope for the rest of my life and that I wish to tell everybody in the world. I liked very much to discover and learn all about the Mayas. Knowing their history and their passionate wild and natural life makes me proud of where I come from. I would like to make all the people concern about this so they can appreciate it too.

My experience in the IGCA has been incredible because I have learnt new things. With the IGCA I have also learnt to handle two things at the same time. For example courseworks and exams in and at the same time the Mayan assembly, although it took some sacrifice I enjoyed it because it is the first time I participate in an activity like this one. I hope that people see the effort and products I give in this team and make them feel encouraged too. I am looking forward to continue with this activity and start new things and continue to discover and encourage more people to assist. My duty right now is to influence on my friends here in school.

June 2010

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