As a part of the CIEE Summer Senegalese Studies study abroad program, my study abroad group and I traveled to Keur Demba for an Intercultural Comparative Experience (ICE) weekend village stay. ICE weekends are implemented in an effort to broaden CIEE students’ global perspective and cultural awareness, while exposing them to a new (and different) community.
This weekend was definitely the most challenging and mentally exhausting of them all, as our host families spoke predominately Wolof, the housing accommodations were much different than Dakar, and I personally (of course) was suffering from some serious stomach issues. Overall, though, Keur Demba was one of the most memorable parts of my trip to Senegal and if I could go back in a second I would. I still hold on tight to my bracelets from my little host brother, my Senegalese name, Ndèye (they immediately vetoed McKenzie and the kids loved making fun of me for my inability to pronounce Ndèye), and the memories of walking around to different houses to eat around the bowl.
I was only able to take a few pictures during my village stay, but the memories will always stay close to my heart: