Cultural Impressions by Experimenters Sherley and Paola

“Standing before the marvelous Taj Mahal at 7am in the morning, in the pouring rain, allowed my brain to finally process the happiness that has been possessing my body every day since I landed in this extraordinary country. This last week in Bahraich, visiting villages and the different hospitals, not only give me more understanding into India’s public health system but also brought a new light on my view of India. My perception of India and its people before this trip was that it was a poverty stricken country with beautiful clothes, spicy food, lots of cows, and really cool music. Now I understand that India is a developing country in need of more enforcement on education and people who are passionate for helping their community no matter where it may be located. This week also showed me how there are communities and organizations out there making change! One of the organizations we learned about that made me really happy was DEHAT. They are out there educating kids on their rights as human beings and empowering them to take control of their lives and mobilize sustainable change in their communities. Children are the future and DEHAT has recognized that and is making that statement a reality in their own country. I am really excited to learn about traditional medicine next week and for all the new parts of India my brain will embrace.” – by Experimenter Sherley

During our first few days in Bahraich I felt myself falling in love with India. Being in India has not only made me re-evaluate what I deem important, but has also changed my perspective on my rolin this world. Having the privilege to visit a nearby village and getting to know students from the Global School of Learning, made it clear to me that their focus on community and love of each other is essential, and is something that I feel is sorely missing in the United States urban city that I have grown up in. I have realized that the multiculturalism of my life is a privilege, a responsibility, and a tool, and that by coming to India I have stepped into the role of a global citizen and must use that to empower communities and bridge the gaps between people across the world. I have been amazed by all we have learned about India’s intricate health system. We have visited various health centers and have been shown how they access and then care for the different communities in India. In spite of the shortcomings in the system such as missing doctors and overwork, the dedication of some of the doctors and their care for their communities is very inspiring and I can’t wait to learn about the intersection of their work with traditional medicine. by Experimenter Paola