I want to say thank you for the amazing opportunity I had to participate in the 2016 Celanese International Impact Program (CIIP) trip to New Delhi, India. I’m so proud to work for a company that is really engaged with the community and has good values.

During my two weeks in New Delhi I had the opportunity to bond with eleven exceptional fellow Celanese employees from around the world and learn about their experiences, culture and beliefs. The Cross Cultural Solutions (CCS) staff’s hospitality made New Delhi feel like home. Each day we learned together about the Indian culture, religion and education.

My assignment in New Delhi consisted of teaching English and mathematics to children between 9-15 years old. I also had the opportunity to teach salsa dancing! Even though the goal was for me to teach, I learned so much from these sweet children, such as:

  • Language barriers do not exist; we have universal languages such as love, kindness, and respect. These kinds of languages allow us to cross borders. Small actions, like the children’s eyes full of hope, laughter and their antics magically made differences disappear.
  • The motivation to learn and work well can be found in simple things like a smiley face or a “Great Job”. The children loved the nice notes and stickers we put on their notebooks when they finished their activities and homework.
  • Sharing and helping others connect us to those we serve gives us a kind of satisfaction that self-interest can never offer.
  • Life is better when you dance! Even when you have two left feet, we had a great time learning salsa and I enjoyed every the smiles I saw on their faces.

The last day of the program was the most difficult for me and it broke my heart that this would be the last time I would see them again. I wanted to take these sweet children home with me.

One small boy, Sunil, asked when I would return. I replied that I was not sure if I would ever have the opportunity to return to New Delhi but, I reassured him our amazing memories and positive interaction would last a lifetime. Everyone I met on this trip will always be a part of me, in every place, every moment and in every good action.

I will always be grateful and proud to have been part of CIIP; this was an awesome life-changing experience. I can proudly say we achieved our objective—giving back to the community!

Editor’s Note: This is the second in a series of eleven blogs by Celanese International Impact Program (CIIP) team members who served for two weeks in New Delhi, India.