Katie Perrod – Review


I chose Mexico because it was always on my list of places to visit and my friends had already done a tour there and recommended it. It took a few months to organise with the help of my friends and family I managed to fundraise and got the whole trip within a tight £1000 budget, flights included.

On arrival in Merida the coordinator’s driver met me at the airport and transferred me to the volunteer house where I met the other volunteers. One of the girls I knew already from Facebook which was reassuring.

The next day the coordinator showed me around the local shops and where to get things and in the afternoon I went on the bus to my first project at the Antonio school. The children were lovely and seemed to enjoy their English lessons even if they were a bit noisy at times. There were a couple of their own teachers who helped too.

In the evenings we sat around at the volunteer house chatting and listening to music and at the weekends we made some trips in the local area. My best memory was swimming in the cenotes which are like underground cave swimming pools, they were amazing.

Would I go back?

Yes to see the progress with the teaching project and to swim in the cenotes again!

Katie
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Alexandra Middleton – Review


Why did you want to volunteer?
I wanted to travel on my own without being on my own, I knew when I got there I wouldn’t be the only volunteer as I had met a couple of girls on the buddy list.

Do you feel you made a difference, how?
I definitely felt we made a difference at the soup kitchen charity, the children were lovely.

What did you do for fun?
We visited the mayan ruins, the beach and Cancun for a long weekend, which was amazing. We also spent the evenings in town in music cafes and walking around, it’s so hot at night, it was nice to be out.

When was your most enjoyable experience, do you have an interesting story?
The best trip was to the beach, the sand was so white and sea temperature incredible.

Who did you make friends with and for what reasons?
I think I made friends with everyone! Everyone was there for the same reason, to do something worthwhile and put something back whilst at the same time having a great time and exploring a new country.

What were the names of the best places to hang out and socialise, why was this?
The volunteer house! It was very sociable and the pool was great!

Would you considering going again or perhaps to another project with Original Volunteers?
Yes I’d like to try something new. I probably would choose original volunteers, because they match my budget better than some of the other organisations.

What items would you suggest future volunteers pack?
LOTS of summer clothes as you will get through loads in the hot weather.

Could you offer any tips to future volunteers?
Make sure you try everything and do the best you can, it wasn’t difficult and the more you put in the more you get out of the experience!

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Saira Khan – Review


Why did you want to volunteer?
I am studying for a PGCE and thought it would be a good idea to get some teaching practice in a classroom.

Do you feel you made a difference, how?
Yes, at the girl’s home in particular there was a girl I got close to who was having problems at school and I was able to help her with some basic maths.

What did you do for fun?
Went to the ruins at chichen itza which was amazing. Not like anything I’ve seen before. It was super hot.

When was your most enjoyable experience, do you have an interesting story?
The children were adorable and so friendly when we arrived each day. They really looked forward to us coming. I took some colouring pencils and glitter pens which were appreciated which was nice.

Who did you make friends with and for what reasons?
With the other volunteers you can’t not make friends. I am still close with a couple and we meet up every so often.

Would you considering going again or perhaps to another project with Original Volunteers?
I want to visit Africa but not sure about the jabs and everything I would need to organise for a trip like that, Mexico was easy to organise, I did everything in a week.

What items would you suggest future volunteers pack?
Insect repellent – I used lots.

Could you offer any tips to future volunteers?
Try a few projects before deciding which one you want to do. Although I chose Mexico to teach, spending time at the girls home was a real unexpected surprise so I went a few times during my time there.

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Aisling Fletcher – Review


Why did you want to volunteer?
I always wanted to visit Mexico and thought volunteering would be a good option.

Do you feel you made a difference, how?
I worked in a few different projects so not sure how much of a difference I made to the children, but it was great doing different things in totally different places.

What did you do for fun?
Evenings in the city centre listening to the street music.

When was your most enjoyable experience, do you have an interesting story?
Not really, although it was funny teaching English when you can’t speak Spanish but I managed it okay in the end.

Who did you make friends with and for what reasons?
There were twelve of us in the volunteer house so it wasn’t hard to make friends as you all live and work together.

Would you considering going again or perhaps to another project with Original Volunteers?
Yes I would definitely do another project, probably Thailand or Cambodia if I can save the money.

What items would you suggest future volunteers pack?
Clothes for hot weather! It gets really hot there, everything sticks!

Could you offer any tips to future volunteers?
Teaching is the best type of work even if you’ve never done it before, maybe playing outdoor games a close second.

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Connor Lane – Review


Why did you want to volunteer?
I wanted to be able to travel on my own and make friends at the same time. I have travelled around Europe before Interailing but it’s hard to make friends when you are at different hostels each night.

Do you feel you made a difference, how?

Yes we definitely made a difference to the children. They seemed to love having volunteers around and they were easy to make friends with from day one!

What did you do for fun?

Bars, cafes and the city centre. I was surprised at the number of bars in the city and we worked our way round quite a few!

When was your most enjoyable experience, do you have an interesting story?

Teaching the children at the school new sports and games. British bulldog was quite popular and I managed to pass on some basketball techniques to some of the girls.

Would you considering going again or perhaps to another project with Original Volunteers?

Yes but not to Merida as I have done this one now!

What would you say/recommend to a friend who was interested in volunteering?

It’s a great way to travel on your own without all the hassle of moving around between places with taxis and buses when you don’t speak the language. In Merida everything felt like home because you have people there to help you out if you need anything.

Could you offer any tips to future volunteers?

You have to give it 100% and not holdback because the time goes so quickly, my 3 weeks felt like 1!

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Former Travel Agent Employee Helps Orphanage in South America


A former Travel Agent employee who raised over £100 in donations for a Mexican Orphanage hopes to take part in other projects in South America

Sara-Jane said she ‘loved the experience’, and hopes to return to South America.

Her time spent there was divided between the Orphanage and a Disabled centre. She also wanted to visit a women’s prison, but did not have enough time to do so.

She was pleased to find a wide range of people volunteering for different reasons.

Sara-Jane got on really well with the Mexican people that she met, found them to be ‘sociable and warm’ towards the volunteers, and felt that they were a very family orientated society.

Sara-Jane has recommended the experience …

Sara-Jane, who describes herself as outgoing, and has travelled extensively in the past, enjoyed her time in Mexico, and has recommended the experience to many other people since returning home.

Volunteering she feels offers a ‘different side to travelling’, and an ‘insight into other cultures’, and she hopes to take part again soon.

It was magnificent of Sara-Jane to raise the money, great news that she hopes to volunteer again soon, and we look forward to hearing the stories from her forthcoming travels sometime in the future..

If you would like to volunteer in Mexico Puerto Vallarta please  click here

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An air stewardess who volunteered describes South America as safe and great destination


… AS A SAFE, AND GREAT DESTINATION.

An Air Stewardess who volunteered in Mexico, and has travelled to ‘every corner of the globe’ described the country as a ‘great destination’, and ‘one of the safest places I have been to’.

Claire Brown is an Air Stewardess with a great deal of experience of long haul flights to: every corner of the globe.
She volunteered at the Puerto Vallarta Orphanage, Mexico, in November for 2 weeks, found the Mexican people to be friendly, the area to be: one of the safest places I have been to’, and Mexico itself as a ‘great destination.
She said that she would like to return to explore, and discover more of the country, as it had left a really good impression upon her during her time there.
She said that the people at the Orphanage had a very relaxed attitude, and that she was happy to be there to lend a hand.
As a seasoned traveller Claire was able to help some of the younger volunteers to feel more relaxed about travelling.
She also feels that her spoken Spanish has improved a great deal as a result of her time in the country.

Absolutely, without a shadow of a doubt…

When asked if she would recommend volunteering in Mexico to others Claire replied: Absolutely, without a shadow of a doubt.  Meanwhile Claire is now back to flying long haul flights all over the world, but is considering where she would like to volunteer next time.

We will be very happy to organise the volunteering again for you Claire, but who could be better to organise the flights than an Air Stewardess?

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Civil servant returns to South America to work in orphanage


Civil Servant returns to volunteer for a second time at Mexican orphanage after praising the work of Original Volunteers.

Aarti Goel volunteered at the Refugio Orphanage in Puerto Vallarta in May, and has decided to return again in January.

She was also full of praise for the work of Original Volunteers. Aarti liked the fact that Original Volunteers only charge one fee for the whole year, meaning that she could return again without having to pay again.

She added that before she went in May people had told her that the company were well organised when it came to going to Mexico, and that was also her experience as well.

She said that the area was a very safe place to be, felt that the Orphanage was well organised, and that it was nice to see that you were making a difference.

‘ It is a great place to both work, and have a holiday’

During her free time Aarti, who is learning to speak Spanish, thoroughly enjoyed exploring the area, and getting out and about.‘ It is a great place to both work, and have a holiday’ she said.

When asked what she felt that she had gained from her first experience of volunteering in May she said that she felt:
‘More confident travelling on my own, more confident about learning another language, a good feeling about being able to help people, and an insight into a different world’

Original Volunteers are delighted that Aarti has chosen to return to volunteer in Mexico (Puerto Vallarta), knowing that she will bring a great deal of joy to the children’s lives, and wish her well with her ongoing quest to learn to speak Spanish.

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Lifeguard Reviews volunteering in Mexico Merida


LIFEGUARD DESCRIBES MEXICAN PEOPLE AS ‘THE NICEST I HAVE EVER MET’

A Lifeguard from Swindon who thought that Mexico might potentially be a ‘rough’ place to volunteer in said that the people of Mexico were ‘the nicest people that I have ever met’.

Jason Wines volunteered at an Orphanage in Puerto Vallarta in Mexico between June and August 2009. He spent his time there playing Football, creating Arts and Crafts, and preparing food for the children, and made a lot of new friends that he has kept in touch with. He added that he had an ‘amazing time’ doing voluntary work in Mexico.

However, it was the friendliness of the Mexican people that most surprised him.
He said that they really wanted to ask him about his life, and that everywhere that he traveled in the country, even in the jungle regions, people were all very friendly, and welcoming towards him.

He said that he was a fairly confident, and motivated person before he went to Mexico, but that the experience he had volunteering abroad has helped to make him even more confident, and that he would love to return to Mexico again, or to take part in another project in Ghana or Kenya.

Jason felt that during his time in Mexico he had formed a bond with the people that he met, and that it was hard to say goodbye to them.

He has recommended the experience to lots of people, including his hairdresser, and has put lots of photographs, and videos up on his Facebook site.

He praised the work of Original volunteers, and said that he found our website easy to search through, and was impressed that we had a free phone number.

He felt that his time in Mexico has helped him to appreciate life, and what he has got a little bit more, and said that with the money he saved by volunteering with us he was able to buy presents for the children at the Orphanage when he left.

We are pleased to hear Jason’ s story of how friendly the people of Mexico were towards him, and feel that you too may well be surprised to discover just how warm, and welcoming the local people will be towards you too when you choose to volunteer.
Why not call us on 01603 859689 and we can advise you on where to volunteer abroad, what projects you can get involved in, and the sort of welcome you can expect to receive from the people that you will encounter during your time spent volunteering.

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