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!
With over 30,000 alums in our global family, we've heard some incredible stories about how adventurous volunteers have embarked on the Cross-Cultural Solutions experience of a lifetime, and how for them, it changed everything.
When I decided to volunteer in Morocco with Cross-Cultural Solutions, I wouldn't let anything stand in my way. Due to the usual scheduling craziness, none of my friends were able to come along, so I decided to enroll with CCS as a solo volunteer. But the beautiful thing about CCS is that even if your fellow volunteers aren't your old friends, you're never really going it alone. In fact, chances are, you're about to meet some brand new, soon to be "old friends."
A community's elders are its deepest roots, a living connection to every generation. Whether CCS volunteers are trading stories with a new friend, serving meals, or leading a fun activity, they find that working with the elderly allows them to connect to their new community in a very special way. Volunteering with the elderly population is an incredibly fun and fulfilling way to immerse yourself in a new culture, and we want to tell you why!
This past December, I volunteered for three weeks with Cross-Cultural Solutions at an orphanage in Tanzania. Before I left home for my big adventure, my CCS Program Site Specialist was sure to remind me over and over again how important it is to be flexible and adaptable with my volunteer assignment. I don't think that I fully understood what that meant until my first day as a volunteer.
Alright. So it's February and the newness of the year has definitely started to wear off. What better time to check in on how closely you're sticking to all of those great resolutions you proclaimed just a few short months ago?
My very first volunteer experience with Cross-Cultural Solutions brought me to Bagamoyo, Tanzania. It was one of the best decisions I've ever made, so if you're thinking about embarking on an international volunteer adventure of your own, do yourself a favor and consider Bagamoyo.
Sending you love from CCS destinations around the globe!