Leave Ur Mark

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9.1 / 10 after 7 Reviews Based on overall, support & value average ratings

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I spent 3 weeks interning in Bangalore with LUM this past January. I was working with deaf children at Sheila Khotavala Institute for the Deaf.

Volunteering review: The children were amazing and made every day volunteering worthwhile. They are both deaf and hard of hearing and it broke my heart to see them have to go without hearing aids since their parents/school couldn't afford it. Funds are definitely needed to get the children on equal footing with other countries. I shadowed a teacher who was sometimes a bit strict with children and sometimes didn't know what to do with me as a volunteer. However, I made my connection directly with the children and they would come to me with questions, try sign language, and try communicating. Focus on the children--not the teachers. The school can feel like its going in many different directions at times. Long term volunteers can really make a stronger impact here. The work hours usually end at around 2 PM so it's nice to be able to fill your evenings with relaxation, reading, exploring the city.

Housing review: LUM didn't set up my housing...I set up my own. I stayed at a hostel near to the school with a lot of international travelers that were coming and going. This was fun and social but the rooms..sometimes with 5 girls at a time felt cramped. However, if you have a bigger budget you should go for private rooms.

LUM review: this is not a program for those volunteers that can't be independent. I liked the idea of being supported prior to my trip and upon arrival but after that, LUM staff mostly lets you be and you have to solve your own problems. It is therefore a volunteer placement agency. It's great for those that want to settle into India and have guaranteed work and some guidance. It's not great for those that need to be handheld everyday. Only use LUM if you are a savvy traveler looking for a 20% guided, 80% independent experience. For me it was perfect as I wanted to make friends with locals and I loved designing my own free time. I would recommend it to anyone looking to get some quick and easy way to work in India.

India review: India is incredible. The people, the food, the weather and the fact that something is always happening has made me feel like I can live here for longer and I plan to return next year.

Program:
Location:
Posted: February 3, 2017
Overall:
9
Support:
8
Value:
9
Age:
27

I've had a crazy obsession with Bollywood movies when I was a little girl, so India was always a country on my bucket list to travel to. That dream came to past last year when I decided to intern with Leave Ur Mark. I have done many volunteer work in other countries before, but I can honestly say that I have had my greatest experience volunteering aboard with Leave Ur Mark. From meeting other interns from different parts of this earth, to the bus rides to work. Every day was an exciting adventure.

Leave Ur Mark works with you to help find the right project that would best fit you, so that your experience in India can be a meaningful one; which would allow you to have fun working on your project while immersing yourself into the culture. I did a women's development internship on menstruation health, putting the project together was a lot of work, but visiting schools in the slums and seeing how excited the girls were to learn about menstruation and allowing it to not exclude them from the social and cultural aspects of life allows you to take a step back to find your self and also helps you to realize the things that you take for granted, things as simple as a toilet.

My advice to future interns, stay longer than a month and make use of all the freedom you have to explore the rich and diverse country of India. Thank you Leave Ur Mark for this amazing opportunity and I cannot wait to travel back to India!

Program:
Location:
Posted: May 24, 2016
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10
Age:
23

India is a fascinating country and my time spent was just enough. I went for 6 weeks on the Therapy and Counseling internship. The most convenient aspects were: it was walking distance from the flats, the therapists spoke in English mostly, the system of evaluation is the Carolina scale which I was familiar with. It is important to come with some working knowledge of autism or else the therapists are spending a lot of energy teaching you the basics (as I observed happening to another intern).

Leave Ur Mark is a good program for those that are willing to be a little independent sometimes. It's important after work that you learn to get around on your own and plan your weekend trips. The coordinator helped us out but it is not supposed to be a guided tour so you have to go into the program knowing that you'll have to learn how to plan travel on your own.

I loved the housing we stayed in. Our flats were spacious, bright and always buzzing with travelers. The view every morning from my balcony was incredible.

My advice to Leave UR Mark would be to organize more barbeque parties as that really gets the interns to be more social with one another. My advice to future interns is to take advantage of every weekend to travel to different parts of India. Work hard and travel hard.

Hopefully I'll be back one day again!

Program:
Location:
Posted: February 8, 2016
Overall:
9
Support:
8
Value:
10
Age:
26

I recently volunteered for 3 weeks working with women on the microfinance internship with Leave Ur Mark. I do think 3 weeks is too short to do something of this nature, but I made the most of my experience. The other interns that stayed for longer made the right decision to come for at least a month and a half. At work, my coworkers were incredible. They would all share lunch with me and I got to try a lot of new Indian curries and rice combos.

I was apprehensive at first, being an American male I did not know how the women I was helping would respond to me. But the staff at Leave UR Mark did a good job of reassuring me, and the woman running the project personally introduced me each woman I was helping to get a loan and learn new skills.

At work since I have a tech background I was able to help both my coworkers and the communities learn more about technology and how to incorporate it into business. I led a few computer classes for the women and helped give some of the women who had more sophisticated businesses some ideas about their future websites. I hope I was able to get them to think differently and enable tech into their work.

My favorite part of the Leave UR Mark experience was staying with all the other interns in the house. We all went through our ups and downs and lots of cultural shock, but it was great to come home and share funny stories with one another over our Indian dinner and make plans to travel together.

Leave Ur Mark pays a lot of attention to their interns and if anyone has a problem they take steps to fix it quickly. The housing they have for interns was beyond my expectations--we even had a swimming pool. That was really crucial in a country like India.

My advice to future interns is to go with the flow. India is not the right country to be in if you like a lot of structure. However if you are okay with letting things happen naturally you will have an incredible and memorable time.

Program:
Location:
Posted: June 24, 2015
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10
By: donalds
Age:
60

I went abroad with LUM this summer and worked on the Advertising/Marketing Internship. India is a good option for English speakers---I didn't have too many language barriers as most of my colleagues spoke English to me. India was an incredible country and I feel I barely touched the surface of it. The internship allowed me to learn more about the Indian market which was very different from the UK. My advice to future interns is to not sit in the appartment all the time, go out and explore all that the city has to offer, and make sure you get along well with the other interns!! LUM the program is great and I got along very well with the coodinator who took us to some good live music venues.

Program:
Location:
Posted: December 2, 2014
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10
Age:
24

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