I have recently returned from being involved in two fantastic GVI programs – teaching Novice Monks in Laos and the elephant reintroduction program in Chiang Mai. My experiences were incredible! Teaching a ‘sea’ of orange-robed boys and adolescents is a complete change to what I’m used to! It was such a rewarding and amazing experience! The group of volunteers I taught with were a group of wonderful people. We had so much fun together teaching and exploring the beautiful town and surrounding areas of Luang Prabang. <em>The thing that hit me the most with my time in the Elephant Program was the passionate nature of the interns and staff. It was so easy to become enthusiastic to learn about the ‘gentle giants of the forest’. They really take your breath away! My home-stay family were wonderful! It was such a privilege to be a part of the village culture. My trip was jam-packed with life-long memories! Thank you, thank you GVI!</em>
To experience the way volunteers were welcomed into their homes and hearts without question was a lesson to us all, and the sadness felt by every volunteer as well as their adoptive Fijian families at the end of their placement time, truly is a testament to the Fijian’s kindness and spirit.
I loved my six weeks in Luang Prabang. From day 1 when I met my co-volunteers and the GVI staff I had a fantastic time. I was delighted to find that the ages of the volunteers ranged from 18 to 59 (me!) and were from all over the world.
The GVI service holiday was by far the most organized, well-executed and consistent of any service holiday I have ever experienced.
On a personal level I have had the opportunity to travel, experience different cultures and live with people from a range of backgrounds and cultures.
The extreme heat was challenging for me, but of course those memories fade with time and only the good memories stay.
In addition to the work and the great support from GVI team Nepal, I shared my time with volunteers much younger than me. Despite my ‘advancing years’, they included me in all their activities – white water rafting and paragliding at 2000 metres to name a couple!