This week’s blog post is written by PPI – Northern Ireland’s newest intern, Alberto.
My name is Alberto and I am from Spain. I have studied two bachelor degrees in my country such as P.E. and F.L. (foreign language), and I am a primary school teacher. I am lucky to be doing an internship with PeacePlayers International – Northern Ireland for the next three months.
This is my second week here and I have been involved in all the programs. If I tell you the truth, I have felt at home since the very beginning. When you are abroad, it is difficult to feel yourself integrate into any situation, you miss your country, and you miss your friends and also the most important people in your life, family.
I have never thought about basketball as a tool to address such an important issues, such as building relationships across divided communities. From my point of view, this job is so interesting and fascinating, it has opened my eyes to how sport can be used to achieve mutual understanding and improve community relations. With PeacePlayers we are helping them to become friends, understand and respect each other’s backgrounds.
Before I came to PPI-NI I only thought about the basketball aspect of the programme, but what really impressed me was that it was more than just basketball, through games and conversation, it is so easy to see how friendships are developed and lessons on the court are taken to real life situations.
I am looking forward to furthering my understanding of PPI-NI, and using sport as a way of addressing issues of diversity in Northern Ireland. I feel like I am part of the family already, and can’t wait to get more involved!