When I went to the Netherlands, it was my first time in Europe. I feared that I would not adapt quickly to the culture. With the demands of my studies and adapting to a new environment, I desperately needed a familiar space. Although it was my first time being a part of IFES, I had been a Christian since I was young. For this reason, I was glad to be part of this network of Christian students who shared similar religious beliefs. We met once a month at I-cafe to share a meal and have open conversations. It was a healthy and much needed break from school ­čśŐ. I had an amazing time in the Netherlands. Because I was at an international school, I interacted with people from 50 other countries. IFES staff was very warm and welcoming. They understood that we were far from our families and spent as much time with us as they could. They invited us to their home for dinner and we met their amazing family. They also facilitated other activities such as a trip to Gouda, a Michael W Smith concert (one of the best experiences of my life) and a Spring Retreat at Youth for Christ in Driebergen. During this time, I was also key member of a local bible study group that was created with support from IFES. We met every Thursday to share the word. It was at this time that we began to plan for the greatest trip of my life with other members of the bible study. IFES staff, myself and three other Christian students travelled to Israel. We had a wonderful experience as we toured sites where Jesus had been, each time stopping to read the scripture that spoke of the historical site. I am so grateful to IFES for making my stay in the Netherlands memorable.

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