I have always thought that if I needed to employ someone I would chose a more mature person. Why? Well, they would have had a lifetime of experience, gained many skills along the way, will be loyal, reliable, know how to recognise what is important and what can wait and be able to contribute a lot.
That’s why they make wonderful volunteers for overseas projects that depend on their input and sharing their skills to make a difference in disadvantaged communities. With their careers behind them, some spare money in the bank and able to find the time to get away, us “more mature people” are in the perfect position to spend some time abroad helping others.
India has a lovely charity based in the villages overlooked by the Aravalli Hills near Udaipur, Rajasthan, in Northern India. There is a teaching placement in local primary schools coupled with teaching boys in a boys orphanage after school. Volunteers receive plenty of guidance (if they need it) on how to plan their lessons, following a curriculum and keeping a diary. They teach in English but also receive a lesson in Hindi to help them communicate with the children. The children are the first generation in their families to go to school and come from homes with no running water, electricity, or bathrooms and when I was there one child brought a toddler to school whom she had to look after whilst Mum was working! (Can you imagine that happening here?!) There are also other placements, like teaching the ladies how to sew, health promotion (such as delivering polio vaccines to the children in all the villages), building renovation/construction (every July), giving children their ‘first’ experiences such as a first outing to the cinema or a zoo, working in a pre-school child centre teaching traditional signing, dancing, art…
The Volunteer House is modern, clean and comfortable and two local ladies produce mouth-watering vegetarian meals to guarantee you will not go hungry. There are shower rooms A computer room and a telephone enables volunteers to keep in touch with the rest of the world!
Placements are from 2 to 12 weeks and whilst there you can visit the Taj Mahal, the Ranthambore Tiger Park or Jodhpur and stay with the desert communities as well as enjoy Udaipur . I went in February with my 28 year old daughter and it was a wonderful escape for those cold winter months! For more details see http://www.volunteervacations.co.uk, give us a ring on 01483 331551 or 07833 208 158 or send us an email on: firstname.lastname@example.org