Friday, 31 August 2012

It's official!

This time next week I'll be at Heathrow Airport, waiting to board my flight to Kenya (where I will then get another flight to Malawi). I've printed my ticket, I've done my second final shopping run (I'll do my final final one on Monday, and then maybe another on Thursday) and I've been told that my accommodation is confirmed. I still don't know many specific details about it, just that it's in a feeding centre run by a larger orphan and community care organisation, it's about 5 minutes away from Samaritan Trust and it has electricity and running water. I'm super excited now, but really scared. Part of me wants to carry on packing, but the other part knows that everything isn't going to fit in my rucksack, and really wants to avoid the stress and mess. I only have a week left of being able to sit mindlessly in front of a computer screen instead of doing what I should be doing, so I think I really ought to make the most of it.

Wednesday, 22 August 2012


A year ago today I stepped on to the isle of Coll for the first time, where I had my selection course for Project Trust, the only Gap Year Charity in the UK that sends young people to volunteer abroad for a duration of 12 months. So I thought today would be a good day to start my blog for the next year, as I (nearly) have my plans for the coming year confirmed.

I've had a bit of bad luck sorting out my gap year, and had my patience tested more than the average pre-departure volunteer: About a week after selection, I got a letter telling me I'd probably be going to Malawi (about a 90% chance), and failing that I'd go to India or Senegal. In April this year, I got a phone call asking if I'd like to go to Rwanda instead. At the beginning of July I went on my training course for Rwanda and was told that there was a 50/50 chance the Rwanda program would go ahead, and a week or so later Rwanda was called off and it looked like another 50/50 between Ghana and South Africa. Finally, the circle was completed and it's back to Malawi, although I'm still a little concerned by the lack of the word 'definite' or 'confirmed' in any of PT's emails . . .

I'm keeping the faith though and trusting PT when they say that I'll probably by flying off to Malawi on the 8th or 9th of September. When I get there I'll be volunteering in The Samaritan Trust, an orphanage for street children near the city of Blantyre in the south of Malawi. From what I've heard and read, the work that the Samaritan Trust does is absolutely amazing, and I can't wait to be a part of it.

I'll be updating this blog whilst I'm in Malawi to let everyone know how I'm getting on and hopefully share some photos of Malawi.
Until then, Ndapita!
(I think that's the correct form of goodbye to use in this situation, in Chichewa, the native language of Malawi)