Taylor M’s Adventure in Tanzania!
Very busy. Very beautiful. Very HOT.
These are the words that Taylor Matias uses to describe her first impression of Tanzania as she and her fellow participants embarked upon 6 weeks of service in the mission field of Dodoma, Tanzania.
When Taylor was in grade 10, she heard about the opportunity to travel and help install a wind-mill powered water well in a community that lacked access to something so vital-clean water. Taylor, who always embraces life-changing experiences, considered the mission trip as an opportunity to not only change her life, but also help change the lives of others, too.
Anticipating the trip to be filled with opportunities to experience a new culture, different foods, beautiful new landscapes and plenty of unique moments, Taylor was excited to finally be going on her trip along with her fellow classmates. What did she look forward to the most? Simply, meeting everybody, experiencing what Africa had to offer and definitely being able to truly help those in need.
Dodoma, Tanzania is more than 15, 000 km from Kamloops, British Columbia-essentially a world away.
While really excited to be going, Taylor admits to being a bit nervous about whether or not those in Tanzania would accept them and did wonder if the people would really want them to be there. Thankfully, she quickly found that everyone was so immensely grateful for even the littlest things that the group could do-both there, alongside them in Tanzania, and for what those do to help them from back home in Canada.
Taylor admits that the days spent in Tanzania were far more structured than she was used. There was always a set plan for the day-something Taylor doesn’t really have back home where she enjoys being outside, exploring new places and playing soccer or practicing yoga.
While she thought that being so far from home for so long would be difficult, and that the heat would be really challenging, neither were as rough as she thought they would be. She kept connected to family and friends through Facebook and the heat, while definitely HOT, was something she got used to pretty quickly.
That said, the hardest part of the trip was getting used to the Tanzanian diet which is definitely different than anything she would eat back home.
As a matter of fact, one of the first things that Taylor wanted to do when she arrived home was eat food that wasn’t available anywhere in Tanzania.
But those were small things compared to the wonderful experiences they had.
Taylor enjoyed exploring the cities throughout the country and being able to see the many different landscapes that the country has to offer.
What she really loved though, was visiting the orphanages.
Taylor says that she has never seen anyone so happy to see her, or to just have visitors in general.
It is something Taylor admits will always stick with her.
Taylor describes her trip as an experience which taught her far more about herself then she anticipated.
This trip was not really what she thought it would be-it was so much MORE!
Taylor says she found a real sense of self while in Tanzania and she definitely learned that she really does have a lot to be grateful for in her life.
As well, Taylor gained a sense of family among her fellow participants.
Something she attributes to sharing such a life-changing experience with others who were equally affected.
Is going on a mission trip with C.PP.S. Mission Projects something that Taylor would recommend? Absolutely!
She does think that it is best to go at age 19 or so, just so even more opportunities can be explored.
That said, Taylor believes that if you are considering participating in a mission trip, to take a leap of faith!
She believes you should let yourself experience something that is so different from what we know and experience here in North America.
Taylor also believes that being able to not only learn about different cultures and different parts of the world, but also help the people that live where you visit, is something that she will always be able to think back on and be proud of-and she is sure that everyone who takes the opportunity will feel the same.
Taylor, who is now back in British Columbia at university and studying to become a veterinarian or pediatrician, sums her mission trip experience as…
“Where I found myself.”
C.PP.S. Mission Projects feels very blessed to have had Taylor dedicate herself to the challenging but rewarding work that we have been immersed in for 40 years.
Stay tuned for more profiles of our mission trip participants and those who dedicate their time and talents to supporting the work of C.PP.S. Mission Projects.