Asian Rural Institute (ARI) Retreat 2014

The ARI retreat gave us a great opportunity to fresh up after we finished our first term in ICU. It was a great moment for me to spend time together with not only JDS fellows but also Japanese and Swedish fellows from ICU. Our trip was led by Pastor Paul with twenty participants. From this trip we had an opportunity to learn how to do organic farming and the importance of teamwork and the value of discipline.

ARI aims for grassroots rural leaders who live and work in their communities in countries located primary in Asia, Africa and Oceania. We met around thirty trainees from 16 different countries from these regions. Of course, I met five Myanmar from different parts of our country and also different religions. ARI is seamless in regard religion and races. I was really impressed and excited on the Morning meeting for the staff, trainees and volunteers because they share their duties and experiences.

When we were there, we participated in early morning exercises, farm work; burning rice husk, separating beans, beating branch of peppers, cleaning farm fields , and having lunch together with trainees. Besides, we prepared breakfast and dinner for our group and it was amazing chance to taste Chinese, Indonesia, Philippines and Myanmar food and all of my friends created the best dishes. Last, but not the least, was we went to a hot spring; it was very exciting for our friends who haven't had this of kind experience before.

The ARI inducts its trainees regardless of nationality, races, religious beliefs, gender and age by means of understanding, sharing and caring. It reinforces the idea that we all are one.

Thet Thet Kyaw