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Bridging Borders: Mariam's Journey with ENGin Through the War in Ukraine

Mariam Shurghaia's story is one of passion, dedication, and the magic of human connection. An adventurous spirit, Mariam embarked on a journey in June 2022 to quench her thirst for English proficiency. "I had the same level from school and wanted to improve it," she shared. Little did she know, this simple desire would lead her to a life-changing experience with ENGin.

ENGin student Mariam Shurghaia

Upon completing an engaging interview with ENGin, Mariam was filled with anticipation. Who would be her language partner? Destiny paired her with Danielle, a kindred spirit with shared interests. Their weekly conversations, which began that August, became a testament to the power of communication in bridging cultural divides.

Mariam recalls her initial interactions with Danielle, "After the first meeting with Dani, I wanted to know English better so that it would be easier to communicate and I could fully understand her." The unique format of the ENGin program not only captivated Mariam but also inspired her to share this opportunity with her friends.

Their weekly discussions spanned a myriad of topics, from current events and captivating movies to global cuisines, fashion, and even climate change. "Dani and I are glad to share all our news. I listen carefully to her because I appreciate her point of view," Mariam shared.

The bond between Mariam and Danielle grew stronger, even in the face of adversity. During challenging times marked by rocket attacks and electricity issues, Danielle and her compassionate family were a pillar of support for Mariam. Their bond further solidified when Danielle assisted Mariam in her academic pursuits, helping her craft a motivation letter for her master's program and preparing for the IELTS exam.

Although they've never met in person, their virtual interactions hold a special place in Mariam's heart. "Now I love Mondays and always look forward to them," she says with a smile. A touching gesture from Danielle, gifting Mariam a soft cashmere sweater, further symbolizes the warmth of their relationship.

Mariam's story with ENGin underscores the beauty of global connections. As she eloquently puts it, "Through people, it is more interesting to explore the world, and it teaches us to understand other people better."

ENGin continues to welcome passionate learners and dedicated volunteers. Embark on your transformative journey today, and discover the incredible connections that await.


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