The most difficult thing I experienced in Peru Cusco was visiting an orphanage for children with special needs. All of them had been abandoned by their parents. The staff was working day and night to make their lives the best possible, but they desperately needed more help. The orphanage was severely understaffed, and they were dependent on volunteers' help. I urge all of you to come here and help these children, they need so much help and love. My local coordinator (Beatriz) in-country support was wonderful!. My coordinator took me on a tour of the city my first day, gave me a telephone, and was available every step of the way after that. Really really excellent! Make SURE you make time to visit Machu Picchu. It was absolutely spectacular and a must see when in Cusco. They won't exchange one dollar US bills, so make sure you have larger bills.
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A Broader View Volunteers Corp
We arrange short-term international mission trips and long term volunteer projects in South America, Africa and Asia. Designed with flexibility and customized attention with volunteer options in African orphanages, teaching English, medical and dental volunteering, HIV awareness projects, conservation in national parks, animal welfare, environmental and community development.
At first it was a bit of a shock to work with the children with special needs. They have such an unfortunate range of disabilities, and this kindergarten/pre-school is very understaffed. Many of them were also orphans. It was however really rewarding to see how much joy they still found in their everyday life, regardless of their circumstances.
My experience was great and working at the two placements I did got the opportunity to really help out with these children. I’m glad I went for as long a period as I did, as it takes time to get to know the children enough to really help them (especially the autistic and mentally challenged kids).
The coordinator was great, and helped me out with whatever I needed. She was really supportive and worked hard with me to help in my efforts to buy Christmas presents (clothes, blankets, toys) to over 400 orphans and disadvantaged children. I appreciate that a lot.
I spent an amazing 8 weeks in Quito, Ecuador volunteering in the health care programs. I got to visit lots of amazing places and had incredible experiences in my free time and while volunteering. The people in Ecuador are super friendly and became great friends with many people all over the country. I also grew very close with my host family and have memories that I will never forget with them. Those 8 weeks were by far the most incredible weeks of my entire life.
I was pleasantly surprised how nice it was to be without internet access at the national park in Peru. I had such an amazing time getting back into my body's natural rhythm, waking up at 6am with the sun and going to bed around 8pm! :)
You need to bring ALL biodegradable substances: shampoo, toothpaste, and bug spray. However, you can also support the program by buying their products once you arrive. They sell all three of these products there for 40 soles.
I had a truly eye opening 2 weeks and I have A Broader View to thanks. I learned so much from being in the jungle, and it really changed the way I think about the World. I hope I can use this experience to help better my own country!
When I first touched down in Accra and walked out of the airport I did not know what to expect or what the next 2 weeks would hold for me. I can honestly say in the short period of time I was able to get to spend time with a large amount of the children from the home, go out and really observe yet experience what the Ghanaian culture had to offer in Kpando and Accra. I went on this mission trip with the intentions on touching those I met but in reality they touched me in ways I could never describe. The experience was extremely humbling and it was amazing to compare a country that had very little but were the happiest in comparison to mine that is quite fortunate yet unappreciative and stressful. I enjoyed being careless and living life day by day. They taught me to appreciate all of my blessings and look at my glass as half full and never empty.
The host family was great. Mary did the best she could to accommodate our meals that were always very much on time (ironically) for 12pm lunch and 6pm dinner. I personally brought bars which I brought for breakfast and snacking. I felt very safe in my environment even when walking along at night I never feared for my safety in Kpando walking from the children's home to the host home.
The local ABV Coordinator was great as far as a volunteer and I enjoyed their company. The coordinator is a very passionate man and I admire how he puts his heart and soul into what he does. He is usually busy running around trying to keep all of their projects running as well with helping the locals in his community.
I was surprised the most with how approachable the people in the community were. Coming from Boston where people go about their day without greeting strangers which was a pleasant surprise. I enjoyed the kids in the neighborhood most. They were so happy to see new faces and would randomly go up to me to hug me or greet me while I was walking and I love it.
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