Rotary Club of Portland: Service Above Self

Aug
02
2017
Cyprus Friendship Program - 2013 Group Update

Cyprus Friendship Program - 2013 Group Update

 

2013 CFP Group Update


Neo

I’m studying medicine at the University of Milan, first year. Yagis and I are classmates as at the school and the fact that we remained close friends after the CFP played a role in deciding what to do next in our lives and fortunately we both managed to get a place here!

As far as the CFP experience is concerned I would say that it did change me as a person. I became a lot more open and sensitive to certain issues. The experience made me feel the need to take action and not be passive like I was before. Before university I had to serve in the army for two years, so ideologically speaking, I was exposed to the other extreme and having experienced the CFP, it made things extra frustrating to say the least.

Kenzie and Zach (my host sister and brother) from our host family came to Cyprus in 2014. We had an amazing time, and still talk now and then.

Yagis

I’m in Milan and I just finished my first year studying Medicine! Neo and I are studying together, and our friendship turned out to be a lasting one. Neo has grown a beard, is a little fatter now, but still is the great guy I met 4 years ago.

I still carry the memories of July 2013 with me, and I’m definitely a better person because of it. CFP is one of the milestones in my life that shaped my character for the better, and we can count ourselves very lucky to have been together; it was a great group!

Hope is so easy to lose nowadays in Cyprus, and CFP is the reason I can keep it alive inside me, even when the times get hard. You (Jack) Michelle, and all the volunteers are to thank for this. You will always be special for us, and your efforts will always be remembered.

**

Pembe

I am very busy here working at emergency service at hospital. I am studying at Yildirim Beyazit University at Ankara (Turkey). My third year at medical school has finished this year. This year was very hard, too much lessons too much exams, but I survived with a good degree at final exam. So I will be resident Doctor next year. Here I am doing an internship and working at hospital for 1 month. It is going very well. Here I learned that I don’t like Interventional things, so probably I will choose something like endocrine. (not much invasive things to do there) and absolutely I want to come to Cyprus back to live. I can’t live anywhere else. My love of Cyprus is getting bigger when I live apart for university.

Maria and I both study apart so we cannot meet very much. Only during the summer. But we are still in contact. We will create a beach activity next weekend. We are even closer now. She is not my friend. She is my sister. This is what CFP added to me.

Maria

I have just finished the 2nd year of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Surrey in the UK and I am looking forward to the next 3 years of my degree that will qualify me to a be a veterinary surgeon by 2020. Most of the year I live in the UK since that’s where I study and I visit Cyprus every now and then to get some rest and meet with friends and family. I am planning to stay in the UK for some time after I graduate to acquire the best possible skills before returning to Cyprus where I will be able to make an impact in my area of profession. Reflecting on my CFP experience, all I can say is that I am who I am because of CFP. CFP and the people involved in it, contributed in a life-changing experiences. One month living with people I didn’t know made me so open-minded and mature. I am so glad I joined the CFP family back in 2013 and chose Pembe to be my pair. Every time Pembe and I, are in Cyprus, we never miss a chance to meet up and give each other an update on how our lives are. WE don’t even need English to communicate any more, we communicate in our own unique way, thanks CFP!

**

Lisa

I just graduated from Warwick University with a first class undergraduate degree in Psychology (BSc with Honors). I’m starting a 6 month internship in marketing in Sydney, Australia in 2 weeks so I”ll be living in Sydney in about a week or so and I plan to live there for at least a year. My plan isn’t fixed at all. At some point I’m looking to complete a masters in Behavioral Science. I know this is what I want to do and the area I want to work in, I just don’t know when I’ll be doing this masters yet!

Reflecting on my CFP experience I think it just generally contributed to my curiosity to travel and try new experiences (hence the decision to relocate to Sydney). Taking part in such a challenge gave me a lot of confidence too. I felt like if I could do this there’s a lot of things I can do! Helped me hone important skills of conflict resolution and diplomacy which has worked in group/working environments. Living and working so closely with others surrounded by a sensitive subject taught me to embrace vulnerability and the importance of open dialogue and this has had a huge impact on the way I approach relationships. I think the experience just overall helped form the foundation that’s made me into the enthusiastic, curious and compassionate person I like to think I am today! On top of that, I made fantastic friends and just had an absolute whale of a time. Kleo and I are still in touch with Carol and Charles and they even came to visit us in Cyprus So overall, for me, the CFP experience was not only a pivotal chapter in my life but also just so much fun – memories I’ll cherish for a long time. Hope this helps. Ayse Lisa x

Kleopatra

I have just finished my BSc in Biomedical Sciences at Durham University. Again at Durham, I am starting on a Masters in Research (MRes) in October, directly continuing onto a fully funded Doctorate of Philosophy (PhD) between Durham and Edinburgh Universities on the topic of breast cancer metastasis.

CFP has had a huge impact on my life. Having spent so much time away from home at a critical age regarding self-discovery and character-shaping, CFP has taught me to be independent as well as polite and appreciative. Lisa and myself were very fortunate to have Carol and Charles as our host parents. As Lisa said, the four of us as well as our parents have stayed in touch and they even visited in Cyprus and Durham!

The conflict resolution classes have been really helpful, especially in everyday life at university. Public speaking through the different presentations have also provided me with precious skills for the future. Additonally, I learned that most of the time there is a different version to the same story, just like the Greek-speaking or the Turkish-speaking view of the events, and I need to have a spherical view of events before I draw any conclusions, hence the importance of freedom of speech. I believe that CFP has played a huge role on who I am today, and I have gained life-long friends with whom I’ve shared many important moments before, during and after going to the US and I’m sure they will be next to me for many more in the future!

Please thank once more on my/our behalf everyone that is involved in CFP.

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