Back in November we held our 2019 Go Abroad Homecoming reception, celebrating our amazing Go Abroad Fund recipients. There we announced the winners of our annual competitions, which we are happy to publicise here:
- Best Written Word – (tie) Pavel Loginovic and Jemima Brakspear
- Best Photo – Chloe Smith
- Best Video – Stefany Soh
Check out their individual entries below:
Pavel volunteered at a hospital in Tbilisi, Georgia, where he helped in the emergency department. He has provided a vivid account of this incredible experience.
Here I am, sitting at the desk in the emergency department. I have merely been here for a couple of hours but have already befriended most of the young doctors. Maybe not all of them, but the coolest one for sure. So, here I am, sitting at a desk and looking at a monitor, listening for its alerting arrhythmic beeping. People are chattering around in a yet totally unknown language, a few doctors are talking to the patients. Some of them do this longer than the others. Patients seem to like it and, I suspect, this is one of the reasons why they keep talking to them. Luckily, I am free from this responsibility. Unluckily, this makes me as lonely as some patients are. A phone rings, one of the doctors answers it and makes a few notes. Chattering continues but somewhat increases. I notice people walking around, everyone becoming busy with his very own task: some prepare the infusions, some unpacking a surgical kit, some adjusting preparing a monitor for use.
A doctor walks in, sees me and shouts so that I could hear through all the noise:
– Rock’n’roll is coming! Get the infusions here!
I help another guy to set up three or so bags of physiologic solution and get them to the bed, which is about to be taken by a motor crash patient. Everything, everyone is ready. Hearing the sirens of an ambulance approaching, the doctors rush to the corridor. The doors slowly open and a patient is driven in on an emergency bed. A young hairy (even for Georgians) guy is driven in. His shirt looks like ten dogs attacked him, his blue jeans look almost black and he has a smile on his face. Someone beside him is carrying a crippled big squared “Glovo” (aka Deliveroo) bag. Just from the first glance, it is evident that some of the bones will be inevitably broken, as his clavicle is severely dismissed right in the middle. And despite all this, he is smiling. The “Rock’n’Roll Doctor” (this name suits perfectly the loud, cheerful big black-eyed Georgian guy) approaches the patients and makes a joke in Georgian. They both laugh so does everyone around them. His head and phone are intact, so when he is finally put into a bed, he texts someone and scrolls his phone.I try to be not helpful, but not to mess with the work of the doctors, although I fill a lot of pauses with my questions. Now, I have been keeping quiet for a while and when the rcknrll doctor sees me, he says that this patient is more of a blues, more of Charles Mingus than Elvis.
Read more from Pavel and see the photos he took as he travelled across the country here: https://uoeabroad.com/2019/09/15/sorry-i-am-not-a-doctor-or-wearing-a-white-coat-in-tbilisi-hospital/
Jemima took part in an architectural summer school in Hungary, where she worked with a team to design and build a project out of wood. She has reflected poetically on what this experience has meant to her.
A sense of supreme togetherness between utter strangers.
Divided in word, custom and person.
Each made their own particular journey to the village.
Whether direct and efficient, arriving fresh from city life.
Or a more rambling route which was at a pace and leisure to allow appreciation of the country and its many traditions.
Of all ages and stages in life, from the lowly student to the industry professional.
We all GATHER in a space, with a carpet of hay and a ceiling of branches.
And despite our differences we are united.
United in a rejection from the uniformity and dullness of everyday office life, possessed by the urge to break this cycle and do something outside the predictable.
United in the joy of outdoor life and living – washing, eating and sleeping under the open sky.
United by a shared determination to extend pencil lines off the page so they enter and intrude the third dimensions – where their possibilities can be truly tested and admired.
United by a knowledge of what physical tasks our bodies can endure and perform
When driven by a determination to CREATE.
We are united by our shared ambition to develop a flexible, forgiving design method that does not call for the production of new materials.
Instead a focus on the resources found in the immediate environment.
And lets the nature of these local materials shape and inform the design process.
In this way we can put a stop to the relentless machine of industry that is sucking the earth dry.
A truly SUSTAINABLE architecture.
Read more about Jemima’s experience and see the photos from her amazing project here: https://uoeabroad.com/2019/09/09/hello-wood-hungary/
Chloe volunteered on a wildlife conservation project in Costa Rica, where she was involved in collecting data on a number of species in the area. She managed to capture this intimate photo of an unusual subject.
Stefany was part of a team representing the Edinburgh University Debates Union as they competed in the European University Debating Championships in Athens. She has compiled this beautiful depiction of her time in Greece.
Congratulations again to our winners!