BYUH Interns' Last Week in Kosovo

Aug 30, 2013

By Sarah Chandler

At the very beginning of our internship, Liz had us each write down our goals that we hoped to accomplish while we were here. Among those were, grasping the language, gaining an understanding of the culture and people in Kosovo, building a stronger music foundation and making friendships to last a life time. While none of us can speak the language fluently we have all gained a working vocabulary consisting of; yes, no, thank and sorry. We have enjoyed our language lessons and getting to learn and practice new words from the volunteers. During our nightly trainings we had the chance to build upon our music skills and get to know a little bit more about the kids, sometimes after practice we would enjoy a light dinner with the volunteers, giving us more time to talk with them. We occasionally had some extra time with the volunteers and they would take us on tours around town and share their personal stories with us, of why they joined the program and what it has done for them. While there is still a lot of work to do in building up Kosovo up, teaching children peace through music is a great start. There is a saying that children are our future; so should we not give them the tools they need to make the world a better place?

The program teaches different qualities to build up character such as; respect, being responsible, being honest and dependable. Each week we have had classes that go into further detail on each of these qualities. I know I have gained a new perspective on life and the way I see myself and others around me, it has been a needed reflection opportunity. Something that I will take away from the program that I have really liked is that even the most experienced veterans are still learning, for in life we are always learning if we open our minds to new perspectives.

I have so many wonderful memoires and new friends to take home with me, and I hope to make even more with the volunteers here as the program continues on. Each one of us from BYUH has changed a little because we have been able to experience the people of Kosovo. Being here has helped us each in deciding what to do with our lives; Alec has decided he wants to work with refuges, Chantel wants to get into Real Estate, Yury will continue on for one more year of school, and I hope to return and work on the archeological digs happening nearby. It is a bitter sweet moment to arrive at our last days; we are dragging our feet to returning. This last week alone has been packed with fun celebrations of new things to come, a birthday and a going away party as one volunteer leaves for Iowa to go to school. I know that the Shropshire Music foundation will help this young man as he prepares for his journey in Iowa as it has helped others before him. I hope you have enjoyed reading our blogs and have gained a better understanding of what the Shropshire Music Foundation does, and have gained your own opinion. There is no way I can share everything I have learned or every memory made, so instead I will share some pictures that I hope bring a smile to your lips.

As you look over each of these pictures, I feel it only right to share some of my memories or experiences from the last week. Teaching the kids games without speaking their language is difficult but can be made fun with a smile, some giggles and some dance moves! Getting kids to sit still long enough to take a picture is a very difficult task, it’s almost impossible to not smile at the faces and noises they make while posing. During some of our free time, we liked to explore the city; we really liked the oldest part of town.


My dancing partner!

These kids are amazing and so much fun to work with, we will miss teaching singing with them and jamming out on the drums.

Yury and I found this in the oldest part of town while exploring, it was too cool not to capture. It says “Aloha from Hawaii,” it’s only perfect since Yury will be going back for school in the fall.


Falmendarit, I hope you have enjoyed reading about our journey as much as I did experiencing it.