Lessons of a six-month stay in Liberia

Post written by Orsolya Hernold


Ever since I learned an African dance in high school, I was drawn to this continent. So when the opportunity came to be an economic student trainee abroad, I wrote on my application that I would like to be placed in Sub-Saharan Africa. In two weeks, I got a call that there is a job as a┬ájunior accountant in Liberia. I had no idea where this country was, I called my mom to look it up in our encyclopedia (late 90’s). As it was confirmed that Liberia matches my initial condition, I took the job without further hesitation.

I spent six months in this civil war-torn country in a brief peace period. I was living with an African family in a home with no electricity and running water. I worked at a local insurance company in an office where computers were run by generators. My friends made bets on how long I will endure. It was tough physically, culturally and emotionally, but rereading my diary also shows the rewards in my self-development:

What did people teach me?

What was the purpose of my stay?


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