And just like that, the Durham, NC portion of our program comes to an end. With only 2 work days left at Threshold, I reflect upon everything that I have experienced here. The next part of my journey will take place at Her Majesty’s Prison in Durham, England, where I will be working with prisoners and their families on their paths to recovery. I am both excited to transition into a new environment, where I will have the chance to experience a different culture in a different location, and sad to see my time in Durham, NC come to an end. Being here at Threshold has taught me far more than I had expected. I have gained skills that would have otherwise been lost, the most important of which is the ability to interact with people who come from all different backgrounds, especially those with ones completely different from my own. Threshold has taught me to understand that reading about certain vulnerable populations is wildly different from serving amongst these demographics everyday. I hope that the soft skills that I have gained will give me a broader more worldly perspective as I head into my future work prospects in the UK.
More adventures await across the Atlantic, where I will be living and working in a week. I can’t wait to engage directly with the locals in England but am also hesitant, not knowing what to expect following the British exit from the European Union. Durham lies in the Northern region of the UK, where I along with the other participants of my program have been told has a predominantly white demographic. Though I do not expect any serious troubles while I am abroad, I am weary of the amplified need for cultural sensitivity. Aside from these thoughts, I am also excited to see how my experience at Threshold will convert to my work at Her Majesty’s prison. No doubt, I will still have to exercise skills such as open-mindedness, flexibility, and compassion. I hope that my work at the prison will be supplemented with the enrichment activities that have been planned both by the program and by individuals in my program. We expect to travel to Edinburgh, Scotland the first weekend that we arrive, and have toured London by the end of our program. More to come!