“As I reflect on my participation in this CIF professional exchange program, I can’t help but feel full of gratitude. Throughout this trip I was able to engage with social work professionals, attend agency visits, have valuable discussions, and examine the social work sector in Russia. This program also gave me the opportunity to explore the beautiful city of St. Petersburg through cultural activities.
The most important thing I realized is that this is more than just a learning exchange. CIF is ultimately about building connections. I did not expect to make such strong connections with others in such a short space of time. The friendships that were made with my fellow participants, my host family, and all of the CIF members and volunteers will be forever cherished. I cannot wait to one day return to St. Petersburg and re-connect with my CIF family.”
Anita looks forward to participating in future CIF PEPs. She states: “There is so much value in building connections, immersing yourself into new cultures, and learning about social work from a global perspective.”
by Anita Alcantara
Anita Alcantara is a Master's in Social Work student and a working professional who serves the older adult population in Colorado Springs, CO, USA. She participated in the CIF Russia Professional Exchange Program in 2018 and had wonderful things to say about her experience.
Professional & cultural exchange program for social workers and youth workers
Council of International Fellowship-United States of America