Looking back, and looking forward…

As many of you will know, I spent a year working in an orphanage in Nepal back in 2007-2008, as part of a volunteer exchange with ICYE-UK. For those of you that don’t know, have a look at my Nepal posts (of which there are MANY) for a flavour of my life in Nepal.

It was an incredible, and quite frankly life-defining experience for me, as it was the most rewarding thing I have ever done, and it changed my perspective on the world quite substantially. It was also what led me to re-define my life goals and change careers, so I definitely wouldn’t be where I am today if it hadn’t been for ICYE and Aishworya. It’s also where I got my Nepali name, and pseudonym, Maya.

I wanted to write a post about it for two reasons. Firstly, because I have just spent a bank holiday weekend at the ICYE-UK On-arrival camp, and secondly because the busy bees over at Aishworya have been doing some amazing work at improving the website and it looks amazing, and brought back a lot of memories. Continue reading

Guest Blog post….

So I wrote a guest blog post for ICYE-UK, the fabulous organisation I went to Nepal with, all about my thoughts on volunteering and how to get into International Development, which has been posted on the “Getting into International Development” blog.

Feel free to go forth and read (though I’m not convinced it’s the greatest thing I’ve ever written….)

The next step…

Sunday 28th January 2007

Hello everyone,

Well, school is busy as usual, we’ve got four weeks to prepare and put on a concert, which involves a huge amount of work, so naturally on top of marking and the usual class prep, (including making viking boats using nothing but card, straws, toothpicks, scissors and glue)  I’m now spending my evenings making paper snowflakes (which, according to my anally-retentive fellow teacher, must have 6 points, not 4, because all snowflakes apparently do!!).

In case you didn’t know, it’s UNBELIEVABLY hard to make 6-pointed paper snowflakes, but I am gradually becoming a master. I only need enough to cover a 6-meter squared wall space, so you know, fun fun fun!!

Anyhoo, in amongst work, work and more work, I have been applying for various positions for next year, as Madame has asked us all to tell her whether we’re re-signing or not, and my answer was a definite and resounding NO.

I have decided that I want to do something a bit different, as while I love travelling, and want to carry on living and working abroad for a while, I want to try and move my “career”, if you can call it that, away from teaching. I still want to work with children, but I’ve been teaching for almost three years now and I don’t think it’s something I want to do forever.

Soooo, instead of teaching very rich and privileged children for lots of money, I’m going to hopefully help children who have almost nothing for no money.  So, I looked into a few options, applied to a few places, and have been accepted onto a ten-month volunteer program in a Nepalese orphanage.

I’ll be finishing in Kuwait in mid-June, coming home for about six weeks to sort out my visa and paper work etc, have a bit of a rest, and will then be going to Nepal at the beginning of August.

Of course, in the mean time, I have to raise almost £4000 in order to go, so I will almost certainly be hitting you all up for money!! I’m going to set up a website through justgiving.com where the charity (ICYE) will receive gift aid tax-relief for donations, so when that’s all sorted out, feel free to donate at will!!

Anyway, that’s about all the time I have right now, as the snowflakes are calling me, I have a lot of paper to fold and cut, and sometime in the next few days I have to construct a 5-6 foot snowman out of flipchart paper and cotton wool.
(Although I can now make my own play-dough from scratch!! I’m so proud of that it’s sooo going on my CV!!)

Hope you’re all well,
lots of love and kisses and happy karmic vibes etc,