Two seemingly different worlds united on the Blackfeet Reservation this summer. Suh Ning Yeoh journied from Malaysia to explore and lend a hand to the people in our host communities of Browning and Heart Butte. How beautiful to hear that the eyes and minds of both Suh Ning and our host partners were opened by their differences and similarities! When you welcome a new experience with an open heart, you’ll be amazed by the knowledge and wisdom you gain.
Suh Ning on the right with volunteer teammate (and now friend) Susan Clinthorne on the left
Suh Ning wrote to us after she returned home:
This was an extraordinary trip for me as it was my first to the US. The opportunity to work in a Native American community makes it an exceptional and memorable experience. I must confess my ignorance as the image that comes to mind when I hear Native Americans is the one portrayed in movies such as “Last of Mohicans” and “Pocahontas”. I am impressed that the Natives Americans are not being left out in the country’s progress as compared to other natives in other parts of the world… Such as the Aborigines in my home country, Malaysia. However, I do see that the Native Americans are still not truly treated as equal in many ways.
I am grateful that I was able to mix with the local community, and I was touched by their warm welcome. It is my wish and hope that they feel delighted to have a volunteer from a faraway place. In the one week of volunteering, I believe and feel that I was totally immersed in the Blackfeet culture… going through the spiritual experience in a sweat lodge where total darkness and steaming heat is the way of praying, listening to speakers share dance, music and art from the Blackfeet culture, and seeing beautiful Montana with a 360 degree view of the fantastic scenery while riding a horse.
This was definitely a fun, educational, and memorable trip for me.
I hope my story helps to brighten your day.
Your story does brighten our day, Suh Ning. Thank you for sharing not only your story with us, but also your time and talents as a Global Volunteer in Montana.
Here are a few of Suh Ning’s favorite photos while exploring Montana by horseback: