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Search: projects abroad

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What To Pack For Tanzania   (published in Tanzania)

January 15, 2015 by   Comments(0)

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One suitcase does not warrant much space when packing for such a grand adventure! Coming to Tanzania and volunteering makes one wonder what they need in order to be both appropriate and comfortable. In general a good rule to follow is to make sure that your knees and shoulders are always covered! 

Of course, the clothing you pack does depends slightly on your placement and whether you will be in Dar Es Salaam or Arusha. Here we help you clarify what you should pack to make the most of your experience.

Care and Teaching: You will want long skirts or pants and shirts that are generally covered up. It is ok to wear short sleeved shirts especially in Dar Es Salaam where it can get very hot. In terms of shoes you will want something comfortable that can get dirty, you will often be outside with the children, where mud is a common occurrence. In general think about looking covered and respectable, but also don’t bring anything that you are too attached too!

Micro-Finance, Journalism, and Human Rights: You will want to dress on the professional side for these projects. Dark slacks and fitted tops for a more business like setting will be best suited for these projects.

Building and Sports Projects: You will be getting dirty and you should think more about your comfort level. Shorts and t-shirts that you don’t mind getting incredibly messy, and most likely even discarding of when you are done, is what you want to add to your suitcase. 

Medical: You will be given a medical jacket from Projects Abroad that you will wear when you are volunteering. Underneath your coat you will be most comfortable in slacks or jeans and a loose breathing t-shirt. Shoes need to be plastic and closed toes. In addition volunteers will need to bring their own scrubs if they wish to observe in Theater. 

Dar Es Salaam: You will want to pack clothes for hotter weather as Dar is on the coast and at a lower altitude. You will also most likely want to bring lighter clothing for your off time such as shorts and t-shirts and possibly swimwear as the beach (and Zanzibar) are very close by!

Arusha: Weather in Arusha can vary dramatically in a single day. You will want to prepare for days that are hot and nights that warrant a light sweater and longer pants. Think layers and you will be fine! 

In addition you will be given a volunteer shirt from Projects Abroad when you arrive. This can be worn whenever it is seen fit!

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What To Pack For Tanzaniahttp://www.mytripblog.org/pg/blog/gtyler/read/378340/what-to-pack-for-tanzania
What To Pack For Tanzania
 

Volunteering: The Holiday Season That Never Ends   (published in Tanzania)

December 23, 2014 by   Comments(0)

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The holiday season is upon us, a time when our attention shifts to connection. Connection fueled by generosity. A time when our focus shifts to some of humanity’s most innate core values.

Knowing the importance of both connection and generosity it is hard not to wonder why this is a once a year event? Why only once a year must we once again become cognizant of some of life’s most essential ingredients? Surely these are things that we should be practicing at all times! Clearly these are values that should guide us not just come December.

We are designed to crave connection; feeling seen, understanding and listening with empathetic ears, creating a dialogue that is genuine and beneficial to all involved is one of our most basic human needs.

The holiday’s are a wonderful opportunity to return to this realization, but how can we remember to connect on a more daily basis? Volunteering can help us take these values and once again infuse them into our daily lives. Instead of separating them and placing them into a category marked by holiday cheer and presents, we can embrace the ways in which mutual connection can actually fuel our souls.

Every time we listen to someone else’s story, every time we help a child understand a new concept, every time we give a family the correct medication for their children, every time we lay a new block for the construction of a school we are employing the power of connection. We are generous not because it is Christmas but because it fills us up to the tippy top with happiness. We reach out to others not to deliver presents but to create connection.

As volunteers we take the cheer of the holidays and employ it in our daily lives, practicing both generosity and connection until we understand the true gifts that we receive.

And ultimately when we leave our respective placements we take the lessons that we have learned and we bring them home. We act as though it is always December, because we realize how good December feels. We lose the tradition of gift giving, we lose the decorations, and the excessive music and we simply bask in the natural gifts that are the foundation for the holidays. We are more generous, we reach out without expectation, we listen with patience and understanding. Regardless of the date we act with generosity and we strive for genuine connection, because we understand how detrimental to humanity it is if we forget to. 

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Volunteering: The Holiday Season That Never Endshttp://www.mytripblog.org/pg/blog/gtyler/read/375973/volunteering-the-holiday-season-that-never-ends
Volunteering: The Holiday Season That Never Ends
 

Four Reasons Why Dropping Your Expectations Will Make You a More Effective Volunteer   (published in Tanzania)

December 18, 2014 by   Comments(0)

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Before embarking on an experience as monumental as volunteering in Tanzania it is hard not to play the ‘what will it be like game’. It is hard not to start concocting images of what kind of bed you will have at your homestay, what impact you will be able to make on the local community, and what kind of cultural connections you will form. It’s natural, it will happen, but expectations should be kept in check as a volunteer enters a large community and network that is already established. Here are four reasons why being open to whatever your experience may be will actually make you a better volunteer.

1. Being Ready to Help Out in Whatever Way is Most Needed

Walking in with expectations about what your role will be as a volunteer might hinder your ability to help out in the way that will most benefit the project. There are ways in which you may want to help, or ideas that you have about how your skills will be best used, yet at the end of the day your placement has a good sense of their needs and how you can make the biggest contribution.

2. Embracing the Culture, Not your Idea of the Culture

Expectations often times include imagining what the culture or community that you are living in will be like. By engaging with a culture through the lens that you have created you are likely to miss out on the essence of where you are actually living.

3. The Ability to Understand the Big Picture

Often times before leaving home it is easy to predict how your presence will have an impact on the project that you are joining. The reality is that one person, one volunteer, is only a part of the overall group. Each volunteer must strive to understand the goals of their placement, without overly projecting their own ideas of what success and progress mean.

4. Maintaining Realistic Goals

The role of each volunteer is incredibly important yet sometimes expectations can make you feel as though drastic changes are possible in short periods of time. The reality is not as simple, and while every little bit helps change still takes time. 

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Four Reasons Why Dropping Your Expectations Will Make You a More Effective Volunteerhttp://www.mytripblog.org/pg/blog/gtyler/read/375570/four-reasons-why-dropping-your-expectations-will-make-you-a-more-effective-volunteer
Four Reasons Why Dropping Your Expectations Will Make You a More Effective Volunteer
 

Human Rights Organisation: Monthly Report   (published in South Africa)

December 17, 2014 by   Comments(0)

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Human Rights Volunteer Jack Harrison from the United Kingdom wrote this month’s report, describing his experience of working on a criminal case with the Projects Abroad Human Rights Office.

Criminal Report: “On Thursday the 23rd of October, I went with criminal attorney, Sherwin, to meet two new clients who are currently incarcerated in the notorious Pollsmoor Prison, awaiting trial. We are only able to assist clients at Pollsmoor who are accused of 'petty crimes'.

 

The first step we had to take was to ensure that those we met were in fact those we could provide legal assistance to. The guards, despite our instructions, brought two men who we were unable to help. These men had to be sent away, unfortunately.

We were left with two men, who stood accused of crimes which we were able to defend them for. We interviewed them in one of the court video link rooms, with no guard present; this was an unnerving experience!

Our first new client stood accused of assault occasioning grievous bodily harm (GBH). He wished to plead not guilty. The client claimed that he was watching some minstrels performing in the street outside of his house. His friend, who had drank too much, was vomiting at the time.

A woman came out of the neighbouring house, and began to shout at them. At this point, someone threw a large stone or brick, hitting the woman in the face and causing her with a reasonably serious injury. The client claimed to us that he had not ever seen this happen before. However, his friend (who the client claims likes to 'play around') blamed him for throwing the object at the woman. The client maintains it was in fact this friend who threw the object.

Two days after the incident, the police came and arrested the client, as the woman had apparently reported him as the perpetrator of the assault upon her. The client's bail had been denied, due to him having several pending cases related to attempted murder and possession of illegal ammunition. He therefore had to remain in Pollsmoor until his upcoming trial.

The second new client was a previous client of ours, who was once again in Pollsmoor. The client was accused of housebreaking with intent to steal and theft.The previous case which we had assisted him with was also theft, which the client had been convicted of. This client wanted to plead guilty, as he had effectively been caught 'in the act'. One evening, the client broke into a shed, intending to steal hardware from within it. However, a loud alarm went off, and he was forced to flee the scene.

The next morning, the client tried to go back to the shed to retrieve the goods which he had attempted to steal. He discovered four grinders, which he placed into a bucket and tried to make off with. However, he was spotted leaving by a taxi driver, who kept him in place until the police arrived and arrested him.

This client had been unable to afford bail, so he was stuck in Pollsmoor until his trial. The client was very upset about this, as he had wanted to be home for Christmas. We immediately began preparing the defences of both of these clients.”     

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Human Rights Organisation: Monthly Reporthttp://www.mytripblog.org/pg/blog/southafrica-social-manager/read/375480/human-rights-organisation-monthly-report
Human Rights Organisation: Monthly Report
 

Journalism Volunteers attend The Global Youth Indaba   (published in South Africa)

December 17, 2014 by   Comments(0)

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The Global Youth Peace Indaba was recently held in Cape Town. The Indaba was sponsored by The Nelson Mandela Foundation, in partnership with the FW de Clerk Foundation.

The event was held for students from all over the world who had come to Cape Town in the hopes to attend The Nobel Peace Summit. However, the Dalai Lama, one of the most prominent speakers presiding over the conference, had his visa rejected by the Government of South Africa.

 The summit was cancelled since most Nobel Prize laureates, in a show of solidarity with Dalai Lama, decided to boycott the conference.

 Project’s Abroad Journalism volunteers attended the Indaba and had the opportunity to hear some very remarkable speeches, one of which was an inspiring speech on Leadership by former President FW de Klerk himself.

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Journalism Volunteers attend The Global Youth Indabahttp://www.mytripblog.org/pg/blog/southafrica-social-manager/read/375479/journalism-volunteers-attend-the-global-youth-indaba
Journalism Volunteers attend The Global Youth Indaba
 

Journalism Volunteers attend The Global Youth Indaba   (published in South Africa)

December 17, 2014 by   Comments(0)

, , , ,

The Global Youth Peace Indaba was recently held in Cape Town. The Indaba was sponsored by The Nelson Mandela Foundation, in partnership with the FW de Clerk Foundation.

The event was held for students from all over the world who had come to Cape Town in the hopes to attend The Nobel Peace Summit. However, the Dalai Lama, one of the most prominent speakers presiding over the conference, had his visa rejected by the Government of South Africa.

 The summit was cancelled since most Nobel Prize laureates, in a show of solidarity with Dalai Lama, decided to boycott the conference.

 Project’s Abroad Journalism volunteers attended the Indaba and had the opportunity to hear some very remarkable speeches, one of which was an inspiring speech on Leadership by former President FW de Klerk himself.

(0 from 0 votes)
 
Journalism Volunteers attend The Global Youth Indabahttp://www.mytripblog.org/pg/blog/southafrica-social-manager/read/375478/journalism-volunteers-attend-the-global-youth-indaba
Journalism Volunteers attend The Global Youth Indaba
 

November Volunteer of the Month: Shane Waxler   (published in South Africa)

December 17, 2014 by   Comments(0)

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Shane Waxler, 19, America

Music Project, 11 weeks

There’s nothing better than having a volunteer walk into our office and greet us with a huge enthusiastic smile.

That is exactly how 19 year old Shane Waxler stole the hearts of most off the staff here in the Projects Abroad South Africa office. Shane, who is currently studying music in the United States, is one of the favourite volunteers amongst our staff members.

Shane, who volunteered with our Music Project, teaches the children at Parkwood Primary school how to play musical instruments and read music.

Shane believes that music allows one to express their emotion in a harmless and beautiful way,

and preventing them from getting involved in activities that would have a negative impact on their lives.

 He loved that he was able to teach and also be an active contributor to the Projects Abroad music site, Sounds of The World. He had the opportunity to interact with local artists and assist them in gaining exposure.

 “I have learnt so much in such a short period of time, I know that my time spent here will provide me with lessons and relationships that I will carry with me for the rest of my life.” He says.

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November Volunteer of the Month: Shane Waxlerhttp://www.mytripblog.org/pg/blog/southafrica-social-manager/read/375475/november-volunteer-of-the-month-shane-waxler
November Volunteer of the Month: Shane Waxler
 

Exploration of Themes and Emotions   (published in Philippines)

November 19, 2014 by   Comments(0)

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Eoin Kinsella is a disaster relief volunteer from Ireland. He loves art very much and does digital paintings and pen drawings. Creating images is very important to him on a creative and personal level as it is a passion he discovered at a young age, and he continues to develop. The portraits he draws are about light and darkness, finding interesting contrasts on the face.

His paintings are an exploration of themes and emotions which he feels compelled to create.

 

 

Some of the paintings are inspired by what goes on in our minds, emotional distress and suffering. Other paintings are inspired by hope and the power and resilience of the human spirit.

 

 

Thank you so much Eoin! :)

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Exploration of Themes and Emotionshttp://www.mytripblog.org/pg/blog/Ludette/read/373300/exploration-of-themes-and-emotions
Exploration of Themes and Emotions
 

Exploration of Themes and Emotions   (published in Philippines)

November 19, 2014 by   Comments(0)

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Eoin Kinsella is a disaster relief volunteer from Ireland. He loves art very much and does digital paintings and pen drawings. Creating images is very important to him on a creative and personal level as it is a passion he discovered at a young age, and he continues to develop. The portraits he draws are about light and darkness, finding interesting contrasts on the face.

His paintings are an exploration of themes and emotions which he feels compelled to create.

 

 

Some of the paintings are inspired by what goes on in our minds, emotional distress and suffering. Other paintings are inspired by hope and the power and resilience of the human spirit.

 

 

Thank you so much Eoin! :)

(0 from 0 votes)
 
Exploration of Themes and Emotionshttp://www.mytripblog.org/pg/blog/Ludette/read/373299/exploration-of-themes-and-emotions
Exploration of Themes and Emotions
 

We grow by giving.   (published in Philippines)

October 9, 2014 by   Comments(0)

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Hi folks! Time flies by so fast and we can now say hello to the “ber” months! As I’m sure you’re all too aware, in November last year, typhoon Yolanda hit the Philippines. The massive destruction incurred by that super typhoon was indeed a nightmare.  Houses, hospitals, public and private infrastructure were destroyed yet people never lost hope. We would like to extend a massive thank you to our Projects Abroad volunteers who, in one way or another, made a big difference by rebuilding classrooms, working in the hospital and in the health center, and assisting teachers in schools.

 

It has been five months now since I started working for Projects Abroad. So far, I have enjoyed being the communications officer for the Philippines. Making friends with volunteers from all backgrounds is simply wonderful. I have learned so much from my team here and, of course, from the volunteers as well. It has broadened my idea of cultural exchange and the value of humanity.

 

I would also like to take this opportunity to thank our contributors, Marieke, Tessa, Matt and Dr. Terry-Anne, for their inspiring stories in this month’s newsletter. To all of our volunteers, we cannot thank you enough for your efforts in completing another project. Thanks to your hard work, Banban Elementary School and the Jovencio Nailon Masong National High School have two classrooms now. This was only made possible by all of you and we will be forever thankful for that. Time is one of the most precious gifts a person could give. It is something that cannot be taken back once it is spent.  You don’t just help rebuild structures but you are building lasting friendships and memories that nobody can destroy. 

 

As the old adage goes, “people don’t take trips, trips take people.” 

 

 -Ludette 

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We grow by giving.http://www.mytripblog.org/pg/blog/Ludette/read/369318/we-grow-by-giving
We grow by giving.