More than 15,839 km across several oceans, Germany seems a lifetime away from Samoa.
However, for one avid traveller, Samoa is her home away from home.
Julia Werner, 19-years-old, once made the long journey from her homeland in Hamburg to the tropical paradise of Samoa.
Ms. Werner was a volunteer at the Samoa Observer through the Projects Abroad Programme.
During her time here, she witnessed firsthand the hardships of Samoan people but also the wondrous adventures Samoa holds.
Prior to Christmas, she launched her project titled “I See You” where she delivered home made goods to those who needed it the most on the streets of Apia.
Ms. Werner returned to Germany earlier in the year, but Samoa never left her heart.
This week, her former English teacher invited her to share her experiences to a crowd of eager 10th graders who wanted to hear about Samoa.
“Mrs. Leduber wanted her students to open their minds to something new,” Ms. Werner said. “Seeing that nothing is impossible if they just go for it. Their possibilities do not stop at the border of Germany.”
Armed with her ie lavalava, tapa and plethora of pictures from her stay in Samoa, Ms. Werner shared her experience and the things she’s learned .
She spoke about “culture, traditions, Siva Samoa, tattooing, breathtaking nature, their relation to the rest of the world.”
Ms. Werner expressed that the class found the pace of life in Samoa the most interesting.
“The laidback way of life way of life and that the Samoans stick to their traditions was the most interesting for them! In here its always pretty busy and our society is multicultural.”
“The amazing this is that I wanted them to know a nation, their culture, tradition and people they would not otherwise know about. I had a globe with me and they’ve been searching the whole planet for this tiny nation.”
“Germany and Samoa are literally on the opposite side of the world distance couldn’t be bigger but still.... after a couple of minutes they felt it was time to make a little travel to Samoa.”
The class has now been enchanted by Ms. Werner’s stories from a far off land.
“They had so many questions and they are still contacting me to get some more information wanting to go see Samoa as well. Not as normal tourist but to explore the country and everything it has to offer.”