We’ve been in for a few days, and I’m really enjoying our time! I’ve met many people who have been extremely hospitable and are more than happy to inform us about the Northern Irish history, culture, and its struggles with suicide and trauma. There are reminders on every block of the hostility that plagued the region, but the welcoming and friendly people cause you to instantly forget about the area’s violent past.
I have participated in two interviews so far with individuals who have lost family members to suicide. Both of these people have touched my heart with their powerful stories, and it has been gratifying to apply some of the skills I’ve learned in school during these interviews. We’ve also attended a few conferences, and the similarities between the mental health fields in the U.S. and the U.K. have become striking. I feel fortunate to have come on this trip because I am learning so much! I can’t wait to learn even more in the next few days!