Last week we had an amazing SPEAK event. This time it was different – instead of tradicional SPEAK event with fun activities, we had a great opportunity to hear volunteer teacher experiences in SPEAK, Ines Azevedo – the founder of “Ei!” and Sara Alafifi – social entrepreneur from Gaza sharing her breathtaking life story and experience.
We would like to share with you the email, which Sara sent to us after the event.

“Being the languages and culture passionate that I am, I felt at home hosted by Speak in Portugal.
Exactly one week ago, on March 23rd of 2016, I was in Lisbon participating to an even11262030_1123512831003265_5621500345757284485_ot organized by Speak, promoted by Associação Fazer Avançar, and in partnership with Alto Comissariado para as Migrações – ACM, I.P.

It was a great honour to be given the chance to talk about my life and work as a social entrepreneur in Gaza, Palestine. The warm welcome I received and the overwhelming positive feedback my speech got gave me the willingness to go through the difficulties I faced during my long trip to arrive in Europe all over again if needed.

I keep going back to the expressionless faces of the people listening to me and how I thought they were bored and disinterested only to find out after that they were merely astonished that a reality like mine exists. It gets me every time…

I also had the pleasure to listen to the great stories and experiences of the people working and volunteering with Speak and how it changed their lives, something that gives a girl like me, coming from a very closed and cynical society, lots of hope that better days are coming as long as wonderful projects like this one and extraordinary people like those I met in Portugal are working towards the integration of humanity back into this world.

Words don’t seem to serve me right when trying to explain the many ways this experience changed me. I can only end this with a message to my good friend Hugo, co-founder of SPEAK, who made all this happen with the help of others, saying; “it was well worth it!”.

Until I see you again, much love and respect!

Thank you Sara for the opportunity to meet and your willing to share your story and experience!


Author: Diana Uzulina

Diana is SPEAK intern from Latvia. She is passionate about the project and loves movies, books and water sports.

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