Stephane Razzo

Stephane Razzo


So… my times here is almost over here in karakol and I really feel like I need to sum things up.

Travelling in so many countries and experiencing cultures has really opened up my mind in so many ways and Kyrgyzstan was no different. You get to hear of the way other people live, eat, drink, work, love and hate and sometimes it could be so different that it seems like if you were living in another planet! The differences could make your mouth open but in the same time you realize that as human beings, we’re not all that different – we’re all in it together. We all have aspirations, hopes and dreams for a better future. For some of us it lies within the arms of someone we love, a community we trust or in a country far far away from here, and at the end of each day, I wish anyone of us could just stop and think: HOW CAN I MAKE THE PLACE I LIVE IN A BETTER PLACE?

It could be your family, friends or even your own neighborhood! Kyrgyz people have the one thing many people don’t have in America, Europe and Israel and it is the strong sense of community, of togetherness. Of the warmth and love you show to one another unconditionally when a person is in need.


There is a saying in the Tora, the Hebrew bible, which says: Ve a’havta le’reacha kamocha – you shall love your friend as you love yourself. Help the ones you love, act, act as human being who wants to live in a better place, who wants to see a change – who wants to BE THE CHANGE. Volunteer.


Volunteering was the best thing I could offer myself on my once in a lifetime Journey in Asia, and for that I am greatful. Greatful for the people I met, for the things I saw changing around me – for the things I learned. I learned that being a better person is not about having more money, or having a better car or clothes it’s about DOING good, taking matters to my own hands and not waiting for someone else to do it for me. LEADING THE WAY.

LEADERSHIP. An organization formed by hard working Kyrgyz women, more powerful than any other  group of women I saw in Asia. GUYS, WAKE UP! Nastya, Sabina Jenia and many others have always been there for me either struggling to brake to language barrier or enjoying life’s most enjoyable moments. One of my life’s most enjoyable moments was definitely spent during my time in karakol’s children home: either teaching English, playing football or just hanging out with the kids in their backyard was an AMAZING experience. Everyone was so welcoming, from the beginning when I didn’t speak any Russian and all the way up until now – where I could feel I just made someone happier and by result I AM HAPPIER.

And that’s what it’s all about.

So if you’re a volunteer, a local guy I knew or even if I didn’t and you have any questions, thoughts or you just feel like talking about it. Contact me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Take care everyone and досвидания!

Stephane Razzon, Stephane or simply Steph J


 Vanessa Gibson



I joined the Peace Corps because I wanted to learn more about the world. I wanted to see how other people live their daily lives, and what their reality is. I knew that traveling to a country wouldn’t have offered the same insight as moving to a country for two years and living with a local family did. I integrated with the locals and learned their language, their culture, and the nuances of their lives.
I started working with Leadership during the second year of my service. During this time, two projects stand out as most memorable. One project called peace week engaged the youth in a week long event, where they received trainings on conflict resolution and anger management, negotiation, and teaching your peers. The youth participated in these trainings, and then presented these trainings to fellow peers to ignite their leadership abilities. The second, and my favorite event, was a 40 days against violence campaign organized by Leadership. It was a small project funded by the UN, with 20 local youth engaging in the campaign. The project consisted of doing an awareness raising campaign on violence against women and children and the many forms it can take such as bride kidnapping. The youth marched from Leadership, through the center, to the University with a large banner while handing out pamphlets of information and stopping to talk with people. We finished at the University where we collaborated with a fellow NGO in a flag planting ceremony. The visual of the white red and purple flags, each color representing a different statistic, and the sheer number of flags had an impacting presence. Every pedestrian walking by couldn’t help but to look at the flags, while many of them stopped to read the signs and ask questions.
As a peace corps volunteer, I wasn’t really sure what I was getting into. All I knew was that I wanted to live in another country and build meaningful relationships with people outside of the US. I did end up building an especially close relationship with the host family which I stayed with during training, as well as with the host family to which I was permanently placed. The one thing I didn’t expect that would happen at such a deep level was how much I learned about myself. Through this difficult but rewarding experience, I’ve gained more insight into who I am in two years than I ever have in my life thus far, and in that way, Peace Corps has made an impacting change in my life.




De Bie Mirjana


To go with an organization isn’t necessarily as we imagine. A lot of people assume than volunteering is synonymous with humanitarian but, actually, it has nothing to do with it. Re-join an association on the spot is a given opportunity to/for build-ing something unique in a particular place during a special time. This time can takes place during a camp (two or three weeks) or a middle/long term (between one month and more than one year). The action taken can be related to a domain such as research or environment but also combine different themes.
I chose to go to Kyrgyzstan because I had the wish to discover Central Asia. This territory is particularly little-known, that’s why it seemed preferred to me. We all know many facts about

the History told by these sculptures, legends recount the origin of surrounding spots as Jeti Oguz scarlet canyons or Issyk Kul, the second largest lake in the world. What is the most known concerning Kyrgyzstan is nomadism, symbolized by the yurt than we find, stylized, on Kyrgyzstan flag. As a former URSS country, borderer to China, this territory is furthermore at the junction of different cultures, as evidenced by the eighty ethnies cohabiting there. Thus, human diversity is crowned by a nature which has the incommensurable merit to didn’t be buried by asphalt and the grace to still be stridden by thousands of stallions.  many cultures but this one is untold without lawful excuse. However, like every culture, it has a real interest. Some of its characteristics attracted me first as the omnipresence of a wild and virgin nature, but it’s unnecessary to add than a vast number of others came after them and than each day 


constitutes a new sum of learnings and discoveries. The nature I thought about before arriving is f

ar from what makes my days in Karakol. This town is, for example, full of parks where tall firs are the case of colossal statues. Beyond

Stay in Kyrgyzstan with Leadership allows me to share the local life of Karakol’s inhabitants. It’s a singular experience which doesn’t consist in daily 

move in the country, as in other ways of travelling, because it gives an anchoring ; it brings something more than a simple spaces crossing. Nevertheless, I can also travel in these regions where, even Yann-Arthus Bertrand went because isn’t he the one who lists the places sacred by beauty?

De Bie Mirjana


Partir avec une association n’est pas nécessairement comme on l’imagine. Beaucoup de personnes présument que le volontariat est synonyme d’humanitaire mais, en réalité, cela n’a rien à voir. Rejoindre un organisme sur place est l’occasion donnée pour bâtir quelque chose d’unique à un endroit et en un instant particuliers. Cet instant peut prendre place au sein d’un camp de deux à trois semaines ou d’un moyen/long terme d’un mois à plus d'un an. L’action réalisée peut être relative à un domaine tel que la recherche ou l'environnement mais également combiner différents thèmes.
J’ai choisi de me rendre au Kirghizstan car cela répondait à ma volonté de découvrir l’Asie centrale. Ce territoire est particulièrement peu connu, c’est pourquoi il me paraissait privilégiable. Nous connaissons tous de nombreuses réalités au sujet de maintes cultures mais celle-ci est passée sous silence sans raison légitime. Or, à l’image de toute culture, elle présente un intérêt véritable. Certaines de ses caractéristiques m’ont d’abord attirée comme l’omniprésence d’une nature vaste et vierge, mais il est inutile de préciser qu'une multitude d'autres leur ont succédé et que chaque jour constitue une nouvelle somme de découvertes et d'apprentissages. La nature que j'avais à l'esprit avant d'arriver est bien loin de ce qui compose mon quotidien à Karakol. Cette ville est, par exemple, constellée de parcs où sont dressés de grands sapins façonnant un écrin pour les statues colossales qu'ils avoisinent. Au-delà de l'Histoire contée par ces figures, il y a les légendes qui narrent l'origine des sites environnants tels les canyons écarlates de Jetti Oghuz ou Issyk Kul, deuxième plus grand lac au monde. Ce qu’il y a de plus connu concernant le Kirghizstan demeure toutefois le nomadisme, symbolisé par la yourte qu’on retrouve, stylisée, sur le drapeau du Kirghizstan. En tant qu’ancien pays d’URSS, frontalier à la Chine, ce territoire est en outre à la jonction de différentes cultures, comme en témoignent les quatre-vingt ethnies qui y cohabitent. Ainsi, la diversité humaine y est couronnée par une nature présentant l’incommensurable mérite de ne pas avoir été ensevelie par l’asphalte et la grâce d’être encore arpentée par des milliers d’étalons.
Séjourner au Kirghizstan avec Leadership me permet de m’immiscer dans l’intimité de la vie locale des habitants de Karakol. C’est une expérience singulière qui ne me fait pas quotidiennement parcourir le pays comme d’autres modes de voyage car elle offre un ancrage déployant une dimension supplémentaire à celle procurée par un simple passage. Cependant, il m’est aussi possible de voyager dans ces régions où même Yann Arthus-Bertrand est passé, car n'est-il pas celui qui recense les endroits sacrés par la beauté ?


Joomla templates by a4joomla