You know two things: You keep finding your gaze drift over to the continent of Africa as you search for your next big adventure, and you're certain that teaching English abroad is the way that you want to make your impact. When you teach English in Africa with Cross-Cultural Solutions, you're supporting our partner organizations in their efforts to provide better access to education for children and adults alike. But you may be wondering, "How can I choose between Morocco and Tanzania?" These are the right questions to ask; Africa is a massive and incredibly diverse continent.
Cross-Cultural Solutions is a mission-driven organization, and one of our core values—something connected to everything we do, and every decision that we make—is Shared Humanity. As a proud CCS alumnus, I can say from experience that every moment abroad with CCS involves a chance to connect with the people around you. Even when you're not busy volunteering, everything you do during your time in-country with CCS helps to build bridges of understanding.
In my last blog post, I focused on the community impact data collected from our local partner organizations through the Cross-Cultural Solutions Partner Program Survey. And since I promised to share some of the universal trends and amazing quotes that best illustrate these trends, I'm back with a few of my favorites.
When you volunteer abroad with Cross-Cultural Solutions, what awaits you at the Home-Base is a family of local people who’ll immediately plug you into your new community. It's the family in a faraway place that you never knew you had; the CCS in-country team.
Earlier this month, we put out a call for creative videos that show how Cross-Cultural Solutions inspires people to change everything. And after digging through tons of submissions over the course of the past few weeks, we're happy to present the finalists, and open up the voting period. Check it out!
If you’re a passionate international volunteer, chances are, you’ve wondered about the long-term impact of your efforts. Am I doing it right? Am I doing it smart? Am I helping to make a real and lasting change? Here's what I can tell you without reservation. Smart volunteering abroad makes a positive difference in the lives of the individuals you're working to support.
Volunteering with Cross-Cultural Solutions in Bangkok, Thailand far exceeded my expectations. By the end of my four weeks, I had developed serious connections with the students and staff members at the school for children with disabilities where I was teaching. The initial, and occasionally overwhelming feeling of being the new kid in a busy school had long since faded, and almost without my realizing it, I had become a trusted member of the school community. A lot can happen in four weeks.
Like most of the 35,000+ Cross-Cultural Solutions alumni out there, I am well aware of the impact that volunteering abroad has had on my life. I first volunteered with CCS when I was 18 and it has been an important part of me ever since. So it's safe to say that the experience changed me. I can feel the impact that this experience had on me. I feel it everyday. But what about the impact that my work, and the work of my fellow volunteers, has had on the community organizations with which we volunteered.
Check out this amazing video by a Cross-Cultural Solutions alum. After his recent 3-week volunteer abroad experience in Kilimanjaro, Tanzania, we think he did an incredible job capturing just what's so special about CCS.
Lately, we've been hearing from folks who want to know what we think is the perfect program length for an international volunteer experience with Cross-Cultural Solutions. You know, the international volunteering "sweet spot." After checking in with our alums, in-country teams, and international volunteer experts here at CCS HQ, we've got the lowdown on how it feels to be a volunteer for 1 week, 2, 3, all the way up to 12!