02 December 2015, Petaling Jaya – 8 lucky Malaysian high school students is selected to participate on a short intercultural exchange program to Japan and France. They recently gathered for the Intensive Program Pre Departure Orientation Camp as they were briefed and oriented by volunteers and alumni. This orientation was organized by Yayasan AFS Antarabudaya Malaysia (AFS Malaysia) to give structured support and practical information for the student to understand their role as young ambassadors in intercultural context.
“It is important for us to give guidance and support to these young ambassadors as this might be their first time going abroad. More importantly, we need to guide them to adapt to the cultural differences” said National Director, Atty Sulaiman.
These participants were given orientation on lines of communications, cultural adaptation and personal safety as well as personal well-being.
One of the participants, Amirul from Negeri Sembilan, 17 years old shared his excitement to meet his Japanese family, “I would like to cook for my host family and show them our Malaysian dishes. If given an opportunity, I would like to teach English to my host family because my ambition is to be an English teacher,” he added.
Qistina, 17 year old from Sarawak leaving for France said, “I would like to share Malaysian cultures with my host family. The recent attacks on Paris might form negative perspectives on Muslim countries. Therefore, my goal is to share Malaysian cultures and educate others to ensure that they receive correct facts about Malaysia”. As Qistina gets excited to try the delicious patisserie in France, she is also expecting to learn French language during her stay.
Participants going abroad to Japan will be completing their exchange program in one month while France participants will be completing their program in two months. These participants will be placed with vetted volunteers families and attend local high schools.
Malaysians interested in applying for AFS Programs can visit www.afs.org.my. Recruitment for 2017 AFS programs will be reopen in January 2016.
View photos of the Pre Departure Orientation here