Volunteer Society Nepal : The best experience for volunteers, the best value for Nepal.

Volunteer Experience: 3 Week Summer Program in Nepal

Summer Program: With the beginning of the summer season in Italy, a lot of volunteers have shown interest in visiting Nepal. VSN received quite some volunteers from Italy this season. VSN has been organizing a 2 or 3 week summer program for these volunteers. The program includes volunteering at the women center, schools, monastery and the disabled center. Besides that volunteers are touring and trekking in Nepal. Jacopo, Martina and Francesca decided to challenge themselves by volunteering in an Asian country rather than somewhere in Europe. The cultural diversity and the spiritual dimension of Nepal attracted them. Below Martina shares her opinions on everyone’s behalf.

What made them visit Nepal?

“At the end of my gap year, I was thinking about a volunteering experience. At the beginning I was more focused on India, as I had studied that the situation for these children in school is really hard and I was very keen on helping them. But later I was suggested to try volunteering in Nepal and that the situation is just as hard there. So I chose Nepal as my destination. I decided to come alone and challenge myself but later Francesca and Jacopo decided to join me. Together we decided to volunteer in Nepal for about 3 weeks. We found the summer program of VSN and it seemed to suit us perfectly. The summer program included both the volunteering and the tours inside and outside the Kathmandu Valley.

Reason behind volunteering in Nepal

“I wanted to try a volunteering experience mainly to challenge myself and try to understand someone else’s point of view. Besides this, I also wanted to help the less lucky and the underprivileged people combining them with the opportunity and the tours inside and outside the Kathmandu Valley. So the summer program in Nepal was a great opportunity for all of us.”

Experiences as a volunteer in the Women Center

“We volunteered in the Women center and the primary school out of which women center was our best place. It was really amazing to see the women learning even at their older ages with great enthusiasm. It was quite difficult for us to explain and teach them because of the language. But later we were used to them as we always had a translator to help us. We taught Math and calculations at the center to the intermediate level and English language to the advanced group. Teaching them was really a challenging task but due to their simplicity and hard-working nature, we had a great bond among each other. We wanted to be with them a bit longer but we ran out of time, so it was really a sad moment for all of us.

We even made some Italian pasta and coffee for the women to teach them about our food. On one hand we were teaching them while on the other hand we were also cooking the food from Italy! The love and the affection we got from those beautiful mothers is something we will not forget. The farewell on our last day was really heart-touching as they praised us and even expressed their thankfulness in a typical Nepali style. Everyone seemed to be so emotional on our farewell.”

Experiences as a volunteer at a School

“We also volunteered in a primary school named Enshrine Boarding School. It was more like having fun together than teaching them. The kids were quite noisy in the beginning but later we manage to make the classes very effective. We assisted the teachers and taught the kids about Italy and then asked them to compare Nepal to Italy. It was really amazing to see all of their interests and hard work along with their dedications. We also taught them rhymes and we read a story book every day. They were so much interested in the stories. It was an amazing experience to work with those kids and enjoy time with them.”

Good Times and also Challenges of Nepal

“We experienced so many new things apart from the Western culture. The language, life style and the cultures were all unique to us. The hospitality and the affection shown by the VSN family were really impressive. The affection and the love we got from the host family was something we can never forget. We also love Nepali foods these days. The local streets and the public transport full of people was also a new experience to all of us. But we can always find people to help us around when we are lost. Traveling on a local bus is also an amazing way to get used to with a lot of people. It might be quite difficult to handle but once you are used to it, you will start loving it. The taxi is always a better option when traveling in a group. You will soon learn the art of bargaining over the price.

Certain things were also hard. The sanitation and often the heavy traffic can be challenging but we soon learned to ignore those and got used to it. Sometimes the food is also quite spicy but you must be smart enough to order non-spicy food. The streets are often lonely after 9 pm so everybody advises you to be home in time. Nepalese strictly follow the day and night, so you must be mentally prepared for that and get up earlier and go to bed earlier.

So in order to conclude this, our 3 week summer program in Nepal is one of the memorable moments in our life. Though there were several obstacles, we tackled each of them and made our visit worth –memorable. Thank you VSN and its team for organizing such a great programs for us volunteers!”

For more information about volunteering at the school or at the women center, go to these pages.