Three Walter Sisulu University tourism students have been selected for an opportunity of a lifetime trip and will be among 150 from around the world invited by the Chinese delegation to be part of the Jinhua Homestay Project next month.
Second-year student Sinovuyo Nomandla, 25, from Ngangelizwe in Mthatha, third-year student Khuselwa Kilani, 24, from Mooiplaas near East London and B-tech student Yanga Mangisa, 24, from Cambridge West in East London, will jet out of the country in the second week of next month.
The announcement was made at Buffalo City Metro mayor Xola Pakati’s investment and networking breakfast, at the East London ICC on Saturday.
The breakfast was part of an array of meetings hosted by BCM and the department of co-operative and governance traditional affairs for the Brics friendship cities, local governments, cooperation and urbanisation forum.
Jinhua Homestay project manager Xu Shufang said the programme saw students from around the world get the opportunity, to explore the rich culture and heritage of the Chinese people, for a period of three weeks, all expenses paid.
“During the stay, you will learn about Chinese traditional culture, witness the beauty of historical architecture and experience life with a Chinese family, who will be hosting you for the duration of your stay, and you will have the chance to communicate with your contemporaries from all over the world.
“This is a chance to put your specialities into practice and share your stories about Jinhua with the world, in photos or writing, so that others can also learn while you preserve their culture and develop sustainable tourism, thus the ancient architecture and historical villages can be well protected,” she said.
Shufang said the stay boasted a series of activities including cultural lectures, folklore experiences and visiting local enterprises.
BCM executive support services HoD Ncumisa Sidukwana, said the city had advertised the programme, appealing to tourism tertiary students throughout the metro studying tourism, to apply.
“Although the programme is all expenses paid when the students get to Jinhua, travelling expenses are not included and that is what we are providing as the city, to enable eligible students not to miss out on this life-changing opportunity,” she said.
“It’s a dream come true for me, just to be overseas and get the opportunity to travel, which is why I studied tourism, now it’s happening, I am so happy,” said Kilani.
Mangisa said when she graduated in 2016, she struggled to get employment, which is why she enrolled for B-tech.
“I’m looking forward to exploring all the opportunities available in the sector and to see how I can come back and implement some ideas back here at home,” she said.