Cross-Cultural Solutions proudly welcomes volunteers to our new site: Bagamoyo in Tanzania. Bagamoyo is a small fishing village located on the East coast of Africa. Known for its rich history as a vital trading port, the town carries a friendly and unique atmosphere that you won’t find anywhere else. With the Indian Ocean a short walk away from the Home-Base, you have the perfect place to relax and unwind after making a meaningful impact.
At CCS, we often get asked about why our volunteers teach English in many countries where we work. While there isn’t one universal answer to that question, we thought we would ask Basil Lima, a former teacher and a passionate supporter of education reform in Tanzania for his take on why English education is important in his country.
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.
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.
After a sleepless night I was worried I was gonna be completely useless at my placement Step-Up Centre, a pre-primary school.
Fortunately, kids have a way of re-energizing you, and before I left I had promised to give them my best no matter how tired I would be due to jet-lag, so I sucked it up, and powered forward.
By Catherine Kerber, Volunteer in Kilimanjaro, Tanzania
Deciding where and how to volunteer can be daunting for anyone, but when I chose to volunteer overseas I knew that I wanted to do something that would benefit the community I would be serving. My friend had recently come back from Tanzania with Cross-Cultural Solutions (CCS) and raved about her time there and her plans to continue her relationship with her placement and the people she met in Tanzania. She inspired me to volunteer with CCS and I haven't looked back since.
It’s a world much different than mine.
People move at a different pace.
They stop and listen.
If you announce that a family member is ill, they want to know how long, what did they eat and how you plan to treat them.
In my world,the response is “sorry, hope they feel better soon.”
In their world, the pace of walking is much more sensible.
In Moshi, when you stroll, there’s a better chance of running into a friend or spotting a child that’s gotten out of earshot from it’s family.
Consider the impact CCS would have with an additional 169 million hours of meaningful volunteer service to communities abroad. That’s how many paid time off hours were forfeited by Americans in 2013.
When I was a junior in college, I decided I wanted to use my winter break of college to volunteer in East Africa. I had been studying Swahili for almost three years and I wanted the opportunity to really immerse myself in the culture and language of Tanzania, while being able to volunteer my time in the community. Here's how I raised the funds to support my journey of volunteering abroad.
For my very first Cross-Cultural Solutions experience, I was in Tanzania celebrating my 65th birthday. I spent several weeks teaching at a local juvenile detention center. It was the hardest, and most wonderful thing I've ever done. I arrived in Moshi thinking that I would be teaching English to the boys at the center, and nothing more. But what an awakening! And just like any other international volunteer will tell you, I'm sure I learned more from those boys than they learned from me.