Alumni Interview: Chiquirra Madkins

“Global travel has helped me to be mindful of and sensitive to other cultures.”

What cohort year did you participate in One Step Initiative?
I participated in the 2016 cohort of One Step Initiative during my senior year of high school.

What was your most memorable part of the experience?
The most memorable part of my experience was going to the beach for the first time. I love the ocean, and it was there where the foundations of my identity were built. I developed a stronger sense of purpose and an appreciation for life.

How did your participation in One Step Initiative inspire your future travel experiences?
My participation in One Step Initiative helped me to discover that I could travel in my youth. I didn’t have to wait until I was older and established, but travel was accessible to me as a teenager.

What countries have you traveled to since your participation in One Step Initiative?
Since participating in One Step at age 17, I have travelled to Colombia, Turkey, and France. I am currently living in Turkey.

Has global travel changed your life? If so, how?
Global travel has changed my life in so many ways. It has opened my eyes to a range of career opportunities. Growing up, I didn’t have any one profession I wanted to take up, but travelling sparked a love for teaching English in me. Global travel has helped me to be mindful of and sensitive to other cultures. I’ve enjoyed learning foreign languages and exploring new foods while listening to the stories of those who have different experiences from my own.

What have you been up to over the past year?
I have been living in Turkey as a homeschool teacher for foreigners in my city. I also lead English Clubs for Turks at a local culture center. I will be returning this fall to continue my work.

I am currently seeking donations to aid my work in Turkey. You can give by going to www.WorldOutreach.org/786.

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