28th November 2018 by

The Ambassador Experience (Diwali)

Thinking about helping us out as a Cultural Calendar Ambassador at one of our events such as our upcoming Chinese New Year Celebration? Want to know more about the ambassador experience? Answering both of these questions, Priyal Desai and Kajol Desai have kindly provided us with an overview of their experiences as Ambassadors during our recent Diwali celebrations.

Kajol Desai:

“Diwali started with excitement: I was going to be celebrating and sharing a festival so close to my heart with fellow students at UOB! Despite the gloomy weather outside, we worked to make the areas of celebration full of light and cheer; adorning them with colourful string, posters and flowers. Then came the food and mithai (sweets). The smell of the food enticed people over and start the conversation. My personal favourite part of the day was walking around campus between our stands in each of the colleges and speaking to students about Diwali, sharing sweets with them and getting photos. This, for me, really captured the essence of Diwali: spreading light and cheer whilst bringing everyone together! Overall, it was a beautiful experience to be a part of and I can’t wait to see what’s in store for next year!”

Priyal Desai:

“The University of Birmingham Cultural Calendar celebrated the festival of light on 7th October 2018. The celebration started by meeting with fellow ambassadors in the morning. We decorated the Arts Building Lobby with beautiful lights and colourful ribbons, which was an experience we all enjoyed. We later went across to different schools to visit the other decorated stalls for Diwali. I used this opportunity to talk to a wide variety of different people—sharing the essence of Hindu culture.

“The food and the sweets at each of our stands were amazing! Out of 5 sweets, Jalebi stole my heart. Sharing the Diwali joviality, we offered sweets to the people who we passed, and those we photographed with our beautiful Instagram photo-frame. The people around the campus showed a keen interest whenever we interacted with them, and I used this as an opportunity to tell them more about the festival of light. As an international student from India, it was a great experience for me to celebrate Diwali away from home with diverse people on Campus, and I could tell that the Cultural Calendar project team really made an effort for this successful aspect of the event. It was amazing experience to work with Niall and Benjamin along with other members of the team, and to make two lovely friends in Kajol and Neda (my fellow ambassadors) as well. The essence of the festival was carried out with great enthusiasm and, overall, it was a lovely experience to celebrate alongside the Cultural Calendar. I’ll definitely be looking forward to it next year!”

We hope that these experiences provide you with the necessary insight into the Cultural Calendar Ambassador role, and we look forward to working with you at our upcoming events!

The Cultural Calendar Project Team.

Kajol Desai is currently undertaking a BSc in Sports and Exercise Science. She was president of the Hindu Society last year and currently works alongside the National Hindu Student Forum (NHSF).

Priyal Desai is an international student from India. She is from a small yet beautiful place called Bharuch, in the state of Gujarat located in Western India. She is currently pursuing MRes in Cancer sciences at University of Birmingham, and has previously completed an MSc in Human Genetics and BSc in Genetics in India.

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