Written on: 24/04/2010
I was initially nervous but my fears were allayed when I met the other volunteers and saw how well structured the programme was.
The best thing for me was probably just getting to work with kids every day and see the difference I was making to their education in just 12 weeks.
I developed leadership skills on the Internship programme because I managed a small group of volunteers in the second stage. I also gained budgeting, negotiation and organisation skills through general running of the project and coordination with the local community. Apart from these professional skills, the teaching also helped me to be a more patient person! On a personal level I became more conscious of issues such as education and poverty in developing countries and I simply had great fun while there!
Too many great memories to mention: meeting parents at family day in Ecuador and doing three legged races, building stoves, school trips with the kids , setting my hair on fire when cooking at summer school, mountain biking down steep volcanoes, ziplining, trekking the Colca Canyon.
I have now decided to go back to university to do an MSc in International Development Management; this may well lead to a career change.
I would recommend GVI because the programmes are well-structured and organised, you receive a lot of support and you can develop the skills I mentioned above which could be really useful in a professional field. Equally, the personal sense of achievement you will feel is awesome, and the downtime trips away and activities are amazing.
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