Testimonial from Brigitta Tombs, Host Family:
Eduarda Correa Flores da Silva: Brazil
My name is Eduarda Correa Flores da Silva, I’m 16 years old. I spent six months in Adelaide, South Australia, Australia to study in a high school experience in Seaford Secondary College, so I’m going to say a little bit about it.
My experience in Australia will always be in my memory and the people I met and the friendships I made here will stay in my life forever. Most of the friendships were made at the school Seaford Secondary College, so the learning place was a big help in the aspect of meeting new people and getting out of my comfort zone, because when I got here, the exchange students coordinator, Mr Adam Pearce, introduced me to other exchange girls and that initiative was really good, because we know each other pretty well and we are really good friends.
I had amazing experiences with the school, like surfing and go to the Wild Life Park. Surfing was something that I always wanted to do here in Australia since I decided to come here, so I was really happy when the school communicated me that I was going to do the amount of ten surfing classes with the other exchange students, so one of my wishes came true, it was a really nice adventure and it will come back to my life as soon as possible, the classes were better than I expected and South Australia’s beaches didn’t disappoint, besides surfing, we did body boarding and snorkelling, so it was amazing to try a lot of new things. Of course, one of my dreams was to meet kangaroos and it was amazing having this experience with my exchange friends, we went to the Wild Life Park in the first week, so it was an awesome way to be welcomed here and we saw a lot of different animals that we don’t have in Brazil and I want to be a veterinarian, so I loved the experience.
With the same group of girls and the school, we went to the Natural Museum and it was insane. It was amazing, it was beyond my expectations and it was really nice to know a little bit more about Australia and what they have here. We went to the city of Hahndorf and to the city to know Rundle Mall and Chinatown and now I go to these places all the time, so it was good to do a tour with someone that knows everything around here.
I did Outdoor Ed. class and we did a lot of outdoor activities that were different for me because I don’t do that in Brazil, we paddle with a kayak, surfing, bushwalking and indoor climbing. I don’t do outdoor adventures so this class was really good so I could know new things and experiment before saying I don’t like it and know myself a little better and see what I like to do best. The best thing was the surfing classes, because I was really into it with the sport because of the classes with the international students and I was getting the hang of it, so it was more fun.
I was in dance class too, because it is something I like to do since I was a kid, so I wanted to experience that in my exchange and it was amazing. My dance classmates since always made me feel welcomed and we are close friends. The class itself is so much fun and the preparation to the performance was something I didn’t do a long time ago, so it was really good to remember the pressure and the nervousness before going on stage and the feeling of mission accomplished after the performance is done. Stay all day preparing everything, fixing the costumes, deciding the makeup and rehearsing with the girls was an unforgettable experience and I have to thank the school and the dance teacher, Ms Kerrisk, for the opportunity.
I had really complicated moments with my host mother in the first two weeks and I was feeling down in the house and I wanted to go away from there. So, I talked to the exchange coordinator in school, Adam Pearce, to see what could be done on this aspect, he made me feel better and tried to do everything so my exchange experience was good, he always wanted to know how the girls and I were doing, so he could be sure we were feeling home. Unfortunately, even trying to talk to my host mother and trying to solve the problems talking to Adam, I decided to change my host family, because I couldn’t enjoy my exchange in the way that I wanted if I stayed there. After I changed my host family, my exchange got 100% better and everything that happened I appreciate Adam and the school coordination for it, because they helped me with the change process. Changing host families was the best decision I’ve ever made in this exchange, because when you have a good family, automatically, your exchange experience gets better, so I just have to thank Adam and the exchange agency for all the effort and concern they had with me.
I am sure that this exchange was the best experience in my life and I own this to all the people that were with me in this months, that helped me when I needed and made me enjoy every second of it. The exchange students, that now are my host sisters, we are really close now and we are going to be friends for life, my friends in school that I hope we talk a lot after I go back to Brazil, but I will always remember them and my host family that I met two weeks after I got in Australia, they will always be part of my life and I am so grateful and lucky to know them and have the opportunity to spend six months with them.
Meu nome é Eduarda Correa Flores da Silva, eu tenho 16 anos e eu passei 6 meses em Adelaide, South Australia na Australia para fazer um semestre do segundo ano do Ensino Médio no colégio Seaford Secondary College e eu vou falar um pouco sobre a minha experiencia.
Minha experiencia na Austrália sempre estará na minha memoria e as pessoas que eu conheci e as amizades que eu fiz aqui vão permanecer na minha vida pra sempre. A maioria das minhas amizades foram feitas na escola Seaford Secondary College, então o local de ensino foi uma ajuda muito grande nesse aspecto de conhecer pessoas novas e sair da minha zona de conforto, porque quando eu cheguei aqui o coordenador dos intercambistas, o Adam Pearce, me apresentou as outras intercambistas e essa iniciativa foi muito boa, porque agora a gente se conhece muito bem e a nossa amizade é pra sempre com certeza.
Eu tive experiencias incríveis com a escola, como surfar e ir no parque de vida selvagem. Surfe foi uma coisa que eu queria muito fazer aqui na Australia desde que eu decidi fazer intercambio e eu fiquei muito feliz quando a escola nos comunicou que eu ia ter em torno de 10 aulas de surfe com as gurias internacionais, ou seja, um dos meus objetivos já ia estar concluído, foi uma aventura muito legal e que vai fazer parte da minha vida de novo em algum momento, as aulas foram melhores do que eu imaginei e as praias da Australia não decepcionam. Claro que um dos meus sonhos era conhecer os cangurus e foi incrível passar essa experiencia com as minhas colegas internacionais, a gente foi no parque de vida selvagem nas primeiras semanas, então foi uma maneira maravilhosa de ser recebida aqui e vimos muitos animais nativos daqui.
Com o mesmo grupo de meninas e a escola, conhecemos o museu natural e foi insano. Foi muito além das minhas expectativas e foi muito legal conhecer um pouco mais da Australia e o que eles têm aqui. A gente foi em Handorf e na cidade visitar o Rundle Mall e Chinatown e agora eu vou nesses lugares toda a hora, então foi muito bom fazer um tour com alguém que já conhece a área.
Eu fiz aula de Outdoor Ed. e a gente também fez muitas atividades ao ar livre que foram muito legais, a gente andou de caiaque, surfou, fez caminhada na floresta e escalou. Eu não sou uma pessoa que sai muito de casa pra se aventurar na floresta, então fazer essa aula foi muito bom pra mim pra eu conhecer coisas novas e experimentar antes de falar que eu não gosto e me conhecer melhor e ver o que eu gosto de fazer. A melhor coisa foram as aulas de surfe, porque eu fiquei muito apegada com o esporte por causa das aulas com as gurias internacionais e eu já estava pegando o jeito, então foi ainda mais divertido.
Eu entrei na aula de dança também, porque é algo que eu gosto de fazer de que eu sou pequena, então eu queria ter essa experiencia no meu intercambio, e foi sensacional. As minhas colegas de dança são muito parceiras e a gente ficou muito amigas, a aula é muito divertida e a preparação pra apresentação era uma coisa que eu não fazia há muito tempo então foi bom lembrar da pressão e do nervosismo antes de entrar no palco e do sentimento de missão cumprida depois que a apresentação acaba. Ficar o dia inteiro se preparando, vendo as fantasias, a maquiagem e ensaiando com as gurias foi uma experiencia inesquecível e eu só tenho a agradecer a escola, minha turma e a professora por isso.
Eu tive momentos bem complicados com a minha host mother (mãe de intercambista) nas primeiras duas semanas e eu estava muito mal na casa e eu realmente queria ir embora. Então eu falei para o coordenador dos intercambistas na escola, Adam Pearce, pra ver o que poderia ser feito em relação a isso, ele me fez sentir muito melhor e tentou fazer de tudo para que meu intercâmbio fosse bom, ele sempre queria saber como eu e as outras intercambistas estavam pra ter certeza que a gente se sentia em casa. Infelizmente, mesmo tentando falar com a minha host mom e tentando resolver junto com o Adam, eu decidi mudar de família, porque eu não conseguia aproveitar meu intercâmbio ao máximo do jeito que eu gostaria. Depois que eu mudei de família meu intercâmbio melhorou 100% e tudo que foi feito eu agradeço ao Adam e a coordenação da escola, porque eles me ajudaram muito com esse processo de mudança. Mudar de família foi a melhor escolha que eu fiz nesse intercâmbio, porque se tu tens uma família boa, o intercâmbio também fica bom, então eu só tenho a agradecer ao Adam e a agência de intercambistas por todo o esforço e todo o carinho que eles tiveram comigo.
Eu tenho certeza que esse intercâmbio foi a melhor experiência da minha vida e eu devo tudo isso às pessoas que estavam comigo nesses meses e que me ajudaram quando eu precisava. As intercambistas da escola, que acabaram virando minhas host sisters (irmãs de intercâmbio) depois de um tempo e agora a gente é muito próximas, meus amigos da escola que eu vou lembrar pra sempre, minha família que eu conheci duas semanas depois de chegar aqui, eles vão sempre ser parte da minha vida e eu sou muito grata por ter conhecido eles e ter a oportunidade de passar seis meses ao lado deles.
Finja Aagard: Germany
I´m Finja, I´m 15 years old and I´m from Germany. And I was here in Australia from January 2018 to June 2018. And the Seaford Secondary College and the people here made this time for me unforgettable and absolutely amazing.
I still know exactly how nervous and excited and also a bit scared I was on my first day at this school, but teachers and students were really nice and friendly to me and there was no reason for me to be scared. And when I had any questions, Adam Pearce and Ms Wedding were always there for me and the other exchange students. And when I changed my homestay family they always helped me and made this as easy as possible for me. Generally, I never felt like I was alone. There was always someone I could talk to. And also the teachers were always nice to me and they helped me a lot when I had questions or when I couldn´t understand something. And so it came, that I never felt uncomfortable at school.
And there were also many other great things I experienced with the school. For example, we went snorkeling and surfing in Port Noarlunga almost every Wednesday in Term 1. Both are things I never tried before in my life and I´m happy, that the school made this possible for me. And it is an unbelievable feeling to stand up on your surfboard for the first time. That was one of many moments I probably would have never experienced without this school. Another beautiful moment was the day we were in a wildlife park with the other exchange students and two of the teachers and could see kangaroos and koalas for the first time. And the day we went to Hahndorf was another great day. All of this and also a lot of other things have made my time in Australia to an unforgettable time for me.
And this time ran so fast. It feels like yesterday for me, when I walked nervously into this school for the first time, but it is already six months ago and I wish I could stay for a bit longer. I remember the first day when Adam told me, that nobody says goodbye without tears and that nobody leaves Australia without crying. And I can say, that he was right. I made so many new friends and I made a lot of great experiences. And if I look back to my time in Australia, it was just amazing and in the beginning I didn´t think, that it would be so hard to say goodbye to all the amazing people and this amazing country.
And if I would ever have the choice, to which school I´m going, again, I would always choose the Seaford Secondary College, because I just felt really comfortable here and that school was one of the reasons that my time here was amazing and I that I will never forget this.
Ich bin Finja, 15 Jahre alt und komme aus Deutschland. Und ich habe die Zeit von Januar 2018 bis Juli 2018 hier in Australien verbracht. Und diese Schule hat stark dazu beigetragen, dass dieses halbe Jahr eine wunderschöne und unvergessliche Zeit für mich war.
Ich weiß noch genau, wie nervös und aufgeregt ich an meinem ersten Schultag hier war, doch ich wurde sofort freundlich von Lehrern sowie Mitschülern aufgenommen. Und wenn ich Fragen hatte, waren Adam Pearce und Ms Wedding immer für mich und die anderen Austauschschüler da und standen uns mit Rat und Tat zur Seite. Auch während meinem Wechsel der Gastfamilie waren sie immer für mich da und haben mir geholfen. Generell habe ich mich nie alleine gelassen gefühlt. Es war immer jemand da, mit dem man reden konnte. Und auch die Lehrer waren sehr verständnisvoll und wenn ich mal was nicht verstanden habe, dann haben sie mir geholfen es zu verstehen. Und so kam es, dass ich mich nie unwohl gefühlt habe im Unterricht.
Auch sonst, habe ich an dieser Schule noch viele weitere tolle Sachen erlebt. Zum Beispiel sind wir in Term 1 fast jeden Mittwoch nach der Schule nach Port Noarlunga an den Strand gefahren um zu Surfen oder zu Schnorcheln. Das waren beides Sachen, die ich vorher noch nie in meinem Leben ausprobiert habe und ich war sehr froh, dass mir die Schule das ermöglicht hat. Und es ist ein unglaubliches Gefühl, wenn man dann auf dem Surfbrett steht und seine erste Welle surft. Einer von vielen Momenten, den ich ohne diese Schule wohl nicht erlebt hätte. Ein anderer wunderschöner Moment war, als wir mit den anderen Austauschschülern und zwei von unseren Lehrern im Zoo waren und dort Kängurus und Koalas hautnah erleben konnten, oder als wir in dem deutschen Dorf Hahndorf waren. All das und auch noch vieles mehr hat meinen Auslandsaufenthalt zu einer unvergesslichen Zeit gemacht.
Und diese Zeit verging so schnell. Es fühlt sich für mich so an, als hätte ich gestern erst nervös dieses Schulgebäude zum ersten Mal betreten, doch es ist jetzt schon sechs Monate her und am liebsten würde ich noch länger hierbleiben. Ich kann mich noch daran erinnern, als Adam Pearce am ersten Tag zu mir sagte, dass sich keiner hier ohne Tränen verabschiedet. Und ich kann sagen, er hatte Recht. Ich hab so viele neue Freunde hier gefunden und so tolle Erfahrungen gesammelt. Und rückblickend war diese Zeit einfach großartig und ich hätte am Anfang nicht gedacht, dass mir der Abschied so schwerfallen würde. Und hätte ich jemals nochmal die Wahl, auf welche Schule ich in Australien gehe, ich würde immer wieder das Seaford Secondary College wählen, da ich mich hier einfach so gut aufgehoben gefühlt habe und diese Zeit hier wunderschön und unvergesslich war.