Africa

Projects Abroad

My volunteer experience with Projects Abroad is an unforgettable experience that I will treasure for the rest of my life. From the second I got off the plane in Accra, to the day I left, I felt welcomed and cared for during my stay. I was in the program for highschool students: the 2 week Medical special. It is a relatively new program, but I had no complaints! The program and staff were well-organized and passionate about the program.
My placement during the highschool special was absolutely incredible! The host family was very welcoming and they also had great food. As I am home right now, I miss the Red Red.. Mmm! Whenever I had questions about the culture, the host mom or the daughters would give me thoughtful answers. Living with the family was a gate way for me to learn about the language and the lifestyle! It is a bit shocking that I learned the most fante( local language) from our driver,Steve! It proves that Projects Abroad thinks through all of their staff placements and the qualities which all of them obtain.
Next, the actual field work! It was an eye-opening experience. I got to actually treat patients: dress wounds, test for malaria, blood tests, etc. I was so excited that I finally found a program that would teach me the beneficial first aid techniques that many other programs do not offer. The medical advisors Eric and Abigail are my inspirations to become a doctor in the future. I would recommend this experience for anyone, it is truly life changing.

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Africa, Ghana
Posted: Aug 8, 2014
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

Alliance for African Women Initiative (AFAWI)

The six weeks working with AFAWI is a great experience for me. I had lots of responsibilities working on a research project on sex education in public junior high school in Ghana. Every day at AFAWI I was bombarded with multiple challenges, yet never have I gained so much experience in different implementation stages in the field of development. The alarming status quo of sex education in Ghana learnt from my fieldwork also motivates me put more efforts and passions in the field of reproductive health and sex education.

Working for a grass-root NGO offers a more holistic and down-to-earth picture of development compared with what I have learnt from my previous working experience with the headquarters of a big international organization and a branch of a Chinese government. Instead of working as a tiny assembly in a huge bureaucratic system with neither an general picture of the organization in mind, nor knowledge about the specific implementation stages, in AFAWI every volunteer is endowed with hands-on experience and multiple duties on each development stage of the project one is involved, and is allowed to take initiatives in designing and launching one’s own project. Working with AFAWI is a particularly invaluable experience for me. Interested in running my own NGO one day, I gained a lot of transferable skills including project implementation, fund raising techniques, team coordination and management of domestic issues. It is a great pleasure to work and live with colleagues coming from multicultural backgrounds sharing the same passion and aspiration for development. Learning to live and work with people is no less a enriching and rewarding lesson than all job responsibilities themselves.

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Africa
Posted: Aug 6, 2014
Overall:
9
Support:
10
Value:
9

Havilla Children's Centre

During Summer 2013 i decided i would like to try a new adventure where i could put a variety of my skills to good use. I am a qualified Nursery Nurse and student social worker and was therefore interested in working in Kenya around this field.

I came across the Havilla Children's Centre and contacted them to find out about their organisation and how i could become involved. Barnabas is the manager of the Havilla Childrens Centre and his wife Miller is a teacher there.

Barnabas provided me with all the information i needed and was very kind and thoughtful in being able to understand any fears i may have about coming out to volunteer. I decided that i could not miss out on this fantastic opportunity, so i booked my flights as soon as i could.

When i arrived i was collected at the airport by Barnabas, i was then introduced to his family, i was made to feel very welcome straight away.

My first day at the Havilla Children's Centre was really exciting, I could hear the children chanting with excitement as they could hear that a new volunteer had entered the building. At this moment i felt like i was a celebrity, all the children jumped up as soon as they saw me and gave me a hug to welcome me to their school.

I had the most amazing time working with these children aged between 2 to 6 years old, i was even able to skype my Nursery School back in England. During this skype session i had all the 6 year olds with me and we sang a song to the Children in England, they then sang a song back to us, it was a very exciting moment for everyone involved.

Speaking to Barnabas before i arrived in Africa he asked me what i wanted to get out of coming to the Havilla Centre. He was aware that i was a student social worker so kindly set up meetings for me to visit children homes and HIV charities. i realised that there was a variety of opportunities for me to engage with the community and offer as much support as i possibly could.

I brought a variety of childrens clothes with me and visited families in need of these items in the slums. Furthermore i was able to deliver HIV awareness training to around 50 members of the community.

During my time volunteering here there was a number of volunteers all from different backgrounds, some people had never worked with children before but wanted to experience it, others wanted to focus on other volunteering work such as being the cook for the school, running the youth club and supporting young adults with filming their acting class. All of which Barnabas was able to set up for his volunteers.

Not only do you get fantastic hands on experience working out there you can also explore Kenya by going on safari and much more.

I would highly recommend the Havilla Children's Centre, it is a fantastic place to be with fantastic teachers called Miller, Winnie, Lydia and Domitilla.

I miss you all and looking forward to seeing you again :)

Darren Williamson

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Africa
Posted: Aug 5, 2014
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

Frontier

Had an amazing time! The people and the place were absolutely incredible and made tge expsrience unforgegtable however the actual project had little to do with conservation of turtles and I didn't feel like I made aby kind of diffefence whilst here. Also camp is in need of running water, a sepedate medical banda abd a more hygenic long drop.

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Africa
Posted: Aug 4, 2014
Overall:
6
Support:
9
Value:
3

International Volunteer HQ (IVHQ)

I am here to tell you about my volunteer experience with IVHQ last year. I volunteered in Ghana Africa for two months from October to December 2013 and I have to say it was the best experience of my life and really has changed it forever. On arrival in Ghana I was greatest at the airport by Evans Kojo I have to say we didn't click right away as I had a slightly rocky experience at the airport but after that we became friends and Evans was teaching me Twi one of Ghana's national languages. Once at the volunteer house we met Benedict Adeli, Erin Adeli and Edward (Eddie) Adeli the head coordinator of the Ghanaian branch of IVHQ. After enjoying a lovely meal cooked by Eddie's gorgeous wife Erin I went to sleep of jet lag. In the morning I woke to more volunteers who had arrived when I was sleeping I wandered into the kitchen to meet Gideon the chef being assisted by Evans so I helped make breakfast. Gideon is an amazingly gentle giant, and I really enjoyed spending time talking with him. After breakfast we had orientation and we were sent on our merry way to our placements mine being the scarlet program better known as BBF or Blessed Bright Futures orphanage. Aside from all the amazing people and children at the orphanage I am here to review my experience with IVHQ and their staff. On a weekend 'away' in Kokrobite (one of my favourite places in Ghana) we got to meet Dan Radcliffe the founder of IVHQ I felt very lucky as he only meets about one percent of his volunteers. Dan brought along George his camera man Eddie and Gidion came along also we had a great time relaxing with them all over dinner which they kindly paid for. And its these little touches which made the experience all the more special for me. They are all honestly great people and I can happily call them all friends.

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Africa
Posted: Jul 31, 2014
Overall:
10
Support:
7
Value:
10

Comments

Hi Gabriella, It is great to hear that you enjoyed your experience volunteering in Ghana with IVHQ last year. Thank you for the feedback and for volunteering with IVHQ.

International Volunteer HQ (IVHQ)

TRULY AMAZING!!! I went out to Ghana in April 2014 after having this trip planned for around 8 months i could not wait to begin my dream i had imagined since a young age. At first i thought i could never plan and follow through with a trip like this all by myself but right from the start the coordinators and staff at IVHQ were always on hand to assist with any issues or questions and up to the date i flew they made me feel at ease, even though they had many other volunteers to help, i still felt valued and that they really wanted to make sure my trip went smoothly. So my nerves were calmed and excitement was taking over! Which was good!
As soon as i arrived at the airport in Ghana i was overwhelmed a little, but as soon as i saw the IVHQ staff member Gideon waiting for me i was instantly at ease. His warm friendly calming manor, whilst making sure i was okay as i looked like a lost puppy, really helped. I could tell instantly i was in safe hands.
When we got back to the volunteer house we were well looked after with water, shown around the house, introduced to the other staff and then we had our dinner cooked, followed by breakfast and a welcome meeting the next day. I strangely have never been made to feel more at home and welcomed in a place so far from home. This really helps when on a trip in an unfamiliar country. I already knew i had a safe place to rely on with people on hand that really cared about your safety if i needed it. It meant i could relax and truly enjoy my experience from the get go.

On route to our placements Gideon and Evans made sure we had everything we needed, like money etc, and told us all we needed to know, the rest was for us to experience :) They reassured us if we needed anything that they are only a phone call away, they checked in on us and we were never ever made to feel like we were a hassle, they were always so happy to help. This really made you feel supported and not alone in what you were doing. They gave you your independence which is important as this is a personal trip but it was amazing to know support was there. I personally appreciated this as i am still only young. I never had any issues whilst away in terms of safety, food etc. I was always well looked after and obviously had me own common sense to prevent any issues from rising.

I did get a little sick, which is extremely common due to change in diet, water, weather etc, but it was nothing extreme. I told one of the staff members Evans and he made sure i got back to the volunteer house so i could be looked after there. He did everything he could to make sure i was okay and getting back to health again, there was nothing he wouldn't do to make sure i was feeling as best i could. He then took me back to my placement once i was well enough and checked up on me for the next few days. This made me feel at ease as being sick in a country where you know nothing can be quite scary. But i felt no fear as i knew i was being looked after. A big thank you for that. You could tell he really was concerned for my health and genuinely wanted to make sure i was well as soon as possible so i could get back to being with the kids as he could also see the passion i felt for them. The staff there really would do anything for you. YOUR ALL AMAZING :)

The programmes available at IVHQ are simply life changing, not only for you but for the people you work with. In my personal opinion there is no better feeling you can get from doing this. You get a real sense of pride and passion from all involved at IVHQ, it is very family orientated and that is exactly what i was hoping to find in this organisation. I was not disappointed, i came away not only changing my own life, the life of the kids i so openly bonded with, but also a part of IVHQ and Ghana itself. It will always be a big part of my life and i have IVHQ to thank for that.

I will most definitely be back... i need to come and find my heart again, it's in safe hands in Ghana though!
If anyone has any doubts.... quite simply, don't!
It is amazing and life changing, the staff there will not let you feel anything but calmed, loved and valued as you start your amazing journey with their programmes available. The kids out their will take your heart. I miss it every single day.

You all deserve so much, you changed my life. Your positive attitude, pride, passion and love has all made its way into my heart!
See you soon Ghana! :)

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Africa
Posted: Jul 30, 2014
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

Comments

Hi Becki, Thank you for volunteering with IVHQ in Ghana! It is always great to hear back from our volunteers, and reading about your experience in Ghana is definitely why we do what we do here at IVHQ. It seems like you gained so much from your 4 weeks volunteer experience in Ghana which is awesome. We hope to see you again in Ghana soon.

Cross-Cultural Solutions

I volunteered in Rabat, Morocco for 3 weeks with this program and would recommend it to anyone young or old wanting to travel abroad for short to long term. They dove us into the culture but yet had the home base where we could still feel at home. During my time there I taught Conversational English to students of all ages. The students were always eager to learn, and we quickly became good friends. The afternoons Monday-Thursday, the directors put on sessions for us from 1-3 hours which included cooking, language, script, tours, women's rights, demographics, education, etc. These were very educational and taught me so much about the country that I wouldn't normally have learned traveling for leisure. I then had the rest of the evening and each weekend to travel around the city and explore more of Morocco. The directors helped me with my travel plans and made sure we knew exactly where we were going. This program has definitely changed my life and would love to volunteer with them in the future.

Program:
Location: Africa
Posted: Jul 8, 2014
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

International Volunteer HQ (IVHQ)

I used International Volunteer HQ to travel to Ghana, Africa for three months. I lived and worked at an orphanage while also teaching at the local school. This was an amazing experience! IVHQ took very good care of all of their volunteers, they checked in with us every week, and they were always on call if we ever got sick.
I was completely changed and humbled by my volunteer trip to Ghana and I plan on returning in December to the same orphanage. I would highly recommend International Volunteer HQ to anyone who is looking for a safe affordable and very supportive program to travel through.

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Africa
Posted: Jun 23, 2014
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

Comments

Hi Cassie, It is so great to hear that you had an amazing experience volunteering in Ghana for 3 months at the beginning of this year on our childcare project. We hope that you are able to return to Ghana with us in December. Thank you for the feedback and for volunteering with IVHQ.

International Humanity Foundation

I'm a rising junior in America, and I'm spending three months in Kenya volunteering as a medical intern with International Humanity Foundation. I have been here 5 weeks and have two months left. In the short time I have been here, I have learned a lot. I have learned taking initiative, responsibility, working hard, how a grassroots level NGO works from the bottom up, and the value of long term commitment to make an impact. I am learning so much about medicine, thinking on my feet, and how to make the best out of any situation. I would recommend this program to someone who is wanting a new experience, loves kids, loves traveling, and is willing to work very hard.

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Africa
Posted: Jun 21, 2014
Overall:
9
Support:
9
Value:
10

International Humanity Foundation

I am Chaoran Wei, a rising junior in College of William and Mary in the United States. I am originally from Xi’an, China.
I am currently a work-study volunteer in IHF Kenya center, and my work is basically to guarantee the normal function of the center together with other volunteers and directors. What i do specifically can be divided into two parts. First, i need to complete weekly online tasks for IHF to promote the organization on internet. Second, i need to do some local tasks and projects, including, for example, tutoring math and contacting with local media for potential partnership.
I want to volunteer in Kenya for many reasons. The major one is that i have never actually live in Africa before. And IHF provide for me a great opportunity to actually live in the place with local people and indulge in a culture i never get to know before.
Also, i volunteer in IHF because i want to help under-privileged people in poor countries. Even though what i can do is tiny compared to so many people that need to be helped, the fact that i am trying to contribute to kids’ present happiness and bright future already makes me worthy of volunteering here.

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Africa
Posted: Jun 21, 2014
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

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