My name is Laura I am 18 years old and I came from Italy. During August I did my volunteering experience in Peru. It was my first time that I did volunteering in another country far from my homentertown. I participated at a project called “Mundo Libre” a rehabilitation center for kinds that come from the “ calle “. It was an incredible experience full from emotions and literally changes you and your thinking . During my stay during the week I was sleeping at the project in pachacamac I was in a room with another volunteer we had an incredible relation ,she was also italian ,and we supported each other always . In my project I had a lot of roles , mostly it was a moral support for the little girls because of their stories and all what they had to experience in the past I won't hide it it was difficult at the beginning because you face the reality of your life and you start to understand that what you have is a lot in average to what they have . Basically at the project I taught Italian to the girls but I also helped the english teacher to teach english . I supported the educators in the afternoon activities such as ceramic doing chocolated music , dancing and confection and It was really a life changing experience.
During the weekends instead I stayed at a family that came from ecuador and also there I had the best time, they brought me everywhere with them and I had a beautiful relation with the daughter of the family we still now keep in touch. I visited some parts of peru with them we went to Marcahuasi and we camped which was absolutely beautiful. During my stay in Peru I also visited Machu Picchu and Montaña de los 7 colores which was the most beautiful experience ever. These places are full from energy and I really felt good and a better person.
Finally I met a lot of new people who helped in my stay and helped me with spanish and helped understanding the peruvian culture. Their culture is beautiful they are really kind and even if they don't know you they are really a lot confident after a five minute talk. I would recommend to do a voluting experience to everybody if I could go back I would probably stay longer because as i said is a life changing experience so I feel a better person now but I think I would change a lot if I had stayed longer. I would also recommend my project for the people who just want to do a volunteering experience and want just to stay with kids and talk a lot with them . For the people who are really a lot motivated i would recommend to do other things . I highly recommend to do a volunteering experience in Peru because for sure you'll have the best time and even though there will be weak moments because it is normal you have to get used to the place and it is not like home so everything changes from the food from the people everything will be different but leaving this it is a wonderful experience which leaves you a lot of good memories.
I am María Inés Salazar, 22 years old Ecuadorian, who at 18 years old had the opportunity to travel as volunteer to Mysore, India, for six months. My time there, was the best way to growth up as a person, it helped me to find the kind of work that I want to do, it allowed meet people from different cultures (people that after help me to wide my comprehension of live). Now, after five years, I still considered this experience as one of the best in my life and I am pursuing my major in a subject that will allow me to dedicate my time to it.
India is a country full of color, fragrances and big hearths. I worked as volunteer in a school, teaching English to children. without a doubt, my work placement was the most important aspect of my time there. I learnt how to communicate with gestures, smiles and hugs, I used this language with children that did not know how to talk in English. In a brisk I found myself understanding everything, enjoying their jokes, learning about their families and getting to know deeper their personalities. Say that I started to love them is not enough because those children taught me to love myself.
I stayed with a host family, this allowed me to be part of their customs, share traditional dishes and learn a bit of the language. Mi home was near of the school, where I was working, thus I used to walk to my work placement, I used to greet all the neighbors that returned to me with a smile and of course with plenty of cows.
As well, I had the opportunity to travel and visit other cities. The program allowed me to meet a lot of international people, who were doing a voluntary service as well. I made some good friends, and with them I enjoyed beautiful days at beaches, big cities, and small towns. Since I return to my country I decided that I have to come back, hopefully I will return soon, because, I know that it will overpass my expectations as the first time did.
In 2012 my decision to volunteer led me to beautiful Argentina, more specifically to the province of Buenos Aires, where I lived and worked for a year in nursing home. A home of beloved grannies and grandparents, as we used to call them after those twelve months together.
The idea of volunteering after school has been a very conscious decision and reflected, that was reinforced during a series of preparation seminars that I had with other volunteers and, not least, with myself. I had clear that, before studying or working, I wanted to spend a year out of everything, a year that was only dedicated to my personal growth, it was possible in an ideal and unique moment of freedom of time that I knew I would hardly will have in the future. Also the choice to go to Latin America, later on Argentina, has arose from the a desire to know a continent that was until that moment unknown to me, but that awoke in me a curiosity and an interest like no other continent.
In retrospect to my volunteering program, every time someone asks me about the year in Argentina, it is impossible for me to summarize such an intense and key experience in a simple phrase. For me the experience of my volunteering year (a year away from home) has been one of the experiences and adventures more decisive and those that most marked and directed my path. My stay in Argentina has allowed me to meet a country and its people as I could never imagine, it is a immersive sensation that you cannot experiment on a long pleasure trip or on vacation. I had the luck of have the time available to travel through other countries of the continent and thereby complete more images and understand little by little the immense diversity of Latin America that caught me and amazed me, in fact it still keep calling me.
The experience of my volunteering is unique and at this time I could say that at that time do a year gap was best. That year I pulled out of my comfort zone and I It made me reflect on many levels about my enormous privileges; representing the volunteering itself one of them. To each person who has the opportunity, the desire, the will and the great luck of being able to go to another place to collaborate in the most concrete way and staff, can tell you and recommend with all my certainty that it is one of the best and most lucky decisions that you will be able to make. From my personal experience one of the most important advice I would give you is to avoid falling into the illusion of being able to change the world. We do not do it with a temporary stay that serves most to ourselves. Do not forget to reflect, sensitize and maintain our eyes wide open, maybe in that way we can improve a little and with that, we already change a lot.