by volunteer Samar Shidiak

Literature was always appealing to me, books, as well. The Emirates Airline Festival of Literature combined both so, I was attracted not only to attend, but also to volunteer. I was looking to satisfy my thirst for knowledge, find books related to philosophy, adventure, life experiences, and the opportunity to meet new authors from different backgrounds that have different points of view.

The overall ambiance was definitely one of the main reasons why this Festival is a total success; the team was friendly and helpful from the briefing and throughout the amazing nine days. The number of volunteers was remarkable, especially school students; I think it was a rich and diverse experience for them, where they become aware of others and of real life work. They could enjoy being responsible, as well as being exposed to different tasks where they would have to adapt and explore their potential.

I enjoyed every session I attended – the wonderful journeys of each and every author. Poeticians with a Punch was my favourite, it took me to another world, where I like to be, where I wanted to be…

Listening to authors, learning from them and getting to know their fears and inspiration was an enriching and enjoyable experience. I would definitely return and maybe help out during the year. Being part of this festival made me realize that there is nothing better than being true to ourselves and hang on to our values and preferences.