Testimonial from

Prior to volunteering for GVI I was a PhD student and a volunteer at a local nursing home. I worked at ACJ Parkade school in Cape town teaching in the classing room and on the sports field. I heard about GVI through doing my own research online of volunteering organisations, they seemed to be a bit more expensive but the website, videos of past volunteers and conversation with GVI representative gave me confidence that I would enjoy this. I only planned to take part in sports coaching but ended up doing bits of everything including Grade R. My average day involved waking up around 8am, having breakfast and being picked up to go to the projects at 8.40. Classes started at 9.10 and lasted an hour which which always went by so quickly. Some afternoons I got involved with the afterschool projects, others were spent playing football in the school compounds with the kids or watching the school football matches at the field. We left work at around 3.30 and rested till 5 before preparing dinner and having social activities with the other volunteers till bedtime! The main highlights were being on the field with the kids, seeing them finally understand maths topics and dancing around with them. My most interesting discovery was that the projects were set up to make a lasting difference whilst allowing individuals to flourish in their own talents. The biggest challenge was learning to communicate in basic English with the kids, as well as learning when to be firm as teachers rather than friends. The aspect I enjoyed the most were the socials (weekday evenings /cape town weekend) and seeing my actions leaving a smile on the faces of the pupils. If you are reading this and thinking about going I would say "Go for it! You have nothing to lose and so much to gain; at the vert least you will get a pretty good holiday out of it.

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