Watch now: Want to Help Someone? Shut up and Listen!
Ernesto Sirolli started doing aid work in Africa in the 1970's—and quickly realized how ineffective it was. In a funny and impassioned TED talk, he suggests the first step is to listen to the people you're trying to help, rather than assume what they need.
Here’s some advice on how to kick the bucket list when you go abroad.
1. Don’t do anything.
One morning, Dana Whitaker woke up and, before getting out of bed, decided she would journey alone to Morocco. Here's a story about the people she met that changed her perspective on cultural differences and shared humanity.
“I don’t know how I am going to handle this for a month.”
That was Dana Whitaker’s first thought when she arrived at the airport in Morocco.
CCS alumna Joanna Schreck shares her moving experience while volunteering with the elderly in Villa El Salvador.
This past year, I hit a milestone: For every seven years of service completed where I work, the company gives employees a short sabbatical. I spent a good deal of time researching what to do with the extra two weeks off; I Googled “sabbatical” in all my free time and was getting increasingly excited about retreats and volunteering possibilities.
How much do you know about Guatemala? Here are 5 interesting things that you can experience firsthand during your Cultural & Learning activities or free time when you volunteer with Cross-Cultural Solutions!
1. The first chocolate bar was invented by the ancient Maya civilization.
With CCS, you’ll be welcomed into a local family’s home where you’ll sit down and talk while eating real chocolate together.
If you’ve ever seen The Lion King, then you probably know that “hakuna matata” basically translates to “no worries.” But do you know what language Timon and Pumbaa are speaking? Read about how Julie Webb, a multi-program alum, is studying Kiswahili here in New York before returning to Tanzania for her Public Health internship!
So I’m learning Kiswahili before I head to Tanzania this summer.
What is Kiswahili you ask?
Well. Let me tell you.
Looking to change it up this summer? Make this your most thrilling summer ever when you go abroad with Cross-Cultural Solutions.
1. Like barbeque? Try tandoori in India.
The CCS cook will even teach you how to make it so you can impress your friends when you get back (if you intend to share, that is).
by Ed Renshaw
This December marks ten years since I volunteered with CCS in Tanzania, an incredible experience that altered the course of my life and opened up a whole new world. Prior to Tanzania I was lucky enough to have travelled in Africa and Asia, but I hadn’t experienced anything nearly as intimate and powerful as the time I spent living and working in the local community.
Jessica Hendricks—entrepreneur, philanthropist, and Cross-Cultural Solutions alum—discovered a creative way to make a positive impact in the world after volunteering abroad: women’s jewelry. Her Brave Collection features handcrafted bracelets by Cambodian artisans, and 10% of profits are donated to help end human trafficking. A Brave bracelet is far more than a fashion statement—each piece is a work of art that tells a story about human connection and strength.