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Arctic 2018 Expedition: Reflections from Alexia Fabiani

By Alexia Fabiani, Sospel, PACA, France

(c) Martin Lipman /SOI Foundation

I have been home for three weeks now and of course it is good to be back. But there is this a little fire in me which has been growing during the expedition and that is asking me to go back to Canada and the Arctic. It is impressive how strong you can hear and feel your intuition once you let it express itself.

This year’s expedition blew up my heart with love, inspiration, friendship, connection, motivation, discovery, understanding and admiration. I really believe SOI evolved in a very interesting and positive way compared to six years ago [when I first travelled with the Foundation]. It is even more awesome and motivating for students. And it is impossible to not come back deeply changed from this expedition.

I can hardly believe the people I got to share the ship with. They are inspiring and bold human beings. They made me believe that really anything is possible. You can be a researcher and an artist, or be an athlete and a zodiac driver. You can be anything you want under one condition: you must work hard and be committed. I am so ready for the projects I set. I am so ready to work on the Sustainable Development Goals we learned about. I am so ready to work with my new friends and make the world a better place.

(c) Martin Lipman /SOI Foundation

This expedition is really one of the best things that has ever happened in my life. I am so happy that the educational program is now more structured. We are given so many opportunities to expand our knowledge, develop our creativity and ignite our spirits. The Isuma workshops are such a treasure to people like me who have been focused on science and sports only. The photography, song-writing and dancing workshops “woke up” my creativity and it is now so good to know that I am able to create beautiful things too. In fact, anyone can, because we are all creators. In our current society, we are reduced to thoughtless consumers so we buy everything. But on the boat, I realized how many skills could be acquired to become a more independent and sustainable world citizen. I was so impressed by the young Inuit women who were sewing their own mukluks. My grandma used to sew and knit beautiful scarfs and sweaters for me but when I was a kid I used to think that it was so “not cool” to wear these items or know how to create them. Now I really wish grandma was still there to teach me how to knit. But I can count on my Inuit friends for that now (please!).

(c) Martin Lipman /SOI Foundation

During the expedition, I also realized how important it was that men and women are equally represented in each and every domain or job. Seeing so many multi-skilled women driving zodiacs really motivated me to do similar things. And they became my role models. I love them and I am so thankful to have them as mentors. SOI, please keep pushing for equal gender representation. Through expedition, more and more women will be able to see themselves in so-called “male-dominated jobs”! This is so positive. I feel so empowered.

Thank you so much to the expedition organizers, Geoff, Jenn, Shirley, Jordan, Emma, and many more I am forgetting (I am so sorry). You are transforming students’ lives, and in doing so, changing the world. You are also saving lives by helping students find their true path. You are creating an empowering network of inspiring and motivated people. For this I would never be thankful enough. When I think about all the new friends I made on the ship, all the people I met, I am the most grateful on Earth, and I want them to know that I love them and I am always here if they need help with anything. My heart is filled with so much love when I think about the other students and how they accepted me and cared for me. I just want to hug all of them.

Now my job is to let people know about this amazing opportunity that is just an application away from them. Change your life; turn your dreams into goals.


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