By living with a Colombian family, I was very involved with the culture and learnt a lot of the Colombian ways, be it the food or quirks about the country. During my time in Colombia, I attended several cultural activities like enjoying America’s cup and supporting Colombia, watching the Folklore parade where the city choose who to represent Miss Ibague. During the parade, they also displayed different costumes and traditions of the whole country.
Going on a volunteering scheme allowed me to develop friendships around the world.
” Despite being from very different areas of the world, AIESEC has the ability to bring like-minded individuals together. ”They are the types of friends that you might not see everyday, but when you do, it will be incredibly special being able to be proud of the moments you did experience together.
During my time in Colombia, I spent time helping in different projects around the city of Ibague. My main project was Crossing Borders, with the aim to share my local culture to children within the local community. This would help them to develop into open-minded individuals, which is crucial for the world to be more open minded. We also helped them to approach their own education.
I remember spending 3 hours one afternoon helping a kid with his math homework since he refused to do it by himself. Once we managed to finish his homework, he was allowed to join the rest of his friends in playing outside.
One more project that I was involved in was teaching English in a public school. Despite being a short time, it was inspiring and it helped me deal with one of my biggest fears which was public speaking. Following the experience, I was surprised how confident I was to teach a group of 16 year old’s English. I sincerely hope that it will help them in the future. To this day, they still ask me questions every now and then.
4. Changing lives
Even in the short time that you spend doing your projects, it will undoubtedly still cause an impact. You will spark different perspectives to the children you have spent time with. Through your sharing, some children have shared that they will work harder to bring actual tangible changes in their lives and future.
But it wasn’t all work. During my time in Colombia, I got to experience the different facets of the Colombia way of having fun. From the standard night out drinking Tapa Roja to playing Tej, playing football every week to traveling the country to visit some of the most iconic touristic places.
Interested in volunteering in Colombia? Search up opportunities on our portal here!