By Mercy Murunga (YES 2018-19, Kenya, hosted by AFS-USA in Charlotte, NC)
The YES program was a great opportunity for me and I am so glad I participated. It really changed me in amazing ways. When I arrived in the United States, I was a shy girl, afraid of large crowds. But during my exchange, I met so many new people and conducted so many presentations, which helped me overcome my fear and now I am able to stand in front of a crowd of people and speak with confidence.
My exchange also taught me so much about community service and volunteering. I realized that there are so many ways of helping others, which are done not to be noticed or to be paid, but to make those in need happy because happiness is all that matters in life. The YES program inspired me to try new things, to explore, and now I can even teach others what I learned from Americans. Thank you YES program and all my friends and family who helped me throughout the year. I am glad and happy to be a YES alumna.