"It was a great experience, the opportunity to talk to the people and get a feel about how they felt about the mission and America was very positive."
Posted: June 14, 2012
As the USNS Mercy pulls into Talaud, one of Project HOPE’s talented volunteers took some time to help out the local community.
Kofi Kyei-Mensah, fourth-year pharmacy student from Shenandoah University in Winchester, Virginia participated in a community relations project for Pacific Partnership 2012. Kyei-Mensah played in a soccer match, and also taught the kids various games from America.
“It was a great experience, the opportunity to talk to the people and get a feel about how they felt about the mission and America was very positive,” says Kyei-Mensah. “They really loved America and everything that the partnership stands for.”
Kyei-Mensah mentioned that the reaction from the local people made him feel like a superstar, like he was a NBA star. “The people were very welcoming, and open to learn about America,” he says. “They also responded well when I tried to speak the local language, which made it easy to learn more about their local culture. Participating in this community outreach made my presence in this mission worthwhile, and it really made an impression on me and the way I think about other areas.”
As the USNS Mercy continues to travel through the islands of North Sulawesi in Indonesia, the Pacific Partnership team continues to make a difference in the lives of the people they visit.