What was your favorite memory of this trip? My first day at the orphanage. I was so nervous the children wouldn’t like me or be able to understand me but the minute I walked in they swarmed me, gave me hugs, wanted to play and even started to calling me “mommi”.
I was surprised at…there were many roaming dogs, and driving here is very different.
Most difficult thing….hearing the stories about how the children in the orphanage got abandoned. It broke my heart. It was also hard to try and comfort a child after they received a visit from their parent.
Best lesson learned….if you have patience, you will gain respect + obedience a lot faster from a children than if you yell at them or give up on them.
Any tips for future volunteers… (clothing, travel, personal items, donations, sightseeing etc)
If you are coming between May and August bring a lot of layers, bring cold medicine if you work with kids because you will get sick. Try to go to all the sights like Oyallotambo and Machu Picchu
Personal Paragraph (ABV Program Testimonial): I wanted to do something out of the ordinary this summer. I wanted to get out of my comfort zone, see some sights, practice my Spanish + make a difference in someone’s life. ABV helped me do that. I decided to do a 5 week trip, stay in a host home and work at an orphanage. My time here was incredible. I am so blessed and thankful for taking this trip. Not only did I see so close + connected with the children but I also had fun here. Making new friends at my work through the program or just at random cafe or Inca sites. It was all worth it.
How would you describe/rate your experience working with the ABV staff in the USA? The US staff were very helpful. Whatever questions I had they were answered immediately. Upon my arrival, Gretty (our contact in Cusco) was great! She helped me with my Spanish, showed me where all the best shops were. I saw her almost everyday since she was the daughter of my host mom which was great because if I had any questions she was there for me.
How was the local ABV Director and the support provided in-country? My host family was amazing! So hospitable so caring, they made sure I went to all the best sightseeing places. They treated me like a daughter. It was also great getting to work with other volunteer through ABV at my orphanage. I made so many friends because of ABV.
Are you willing to speak to other potential ABV volunteers? Yes of course!
Rachel Volunteer Abroad in Cusco, Peru