Karmen from Australia, age 36 who has an infectious laugh, loves travelling, meeting new people and shopping, has been volunteering at Al Qawiyyi School and Zanzibar Youth Alliance.
What have kind of activities have you been doing as a volunteer?
I have been assisting the teacher in different classes each week such as nursery, form 2 and standard 2 at school and I have been helping the womans group with cooking at the youth centre.
What made you volunteer with Arts in Tanzania? What has been the best part of being with Arts in Tanzania?
I wanted to volunteer because I am looking for a change career but have been unsure about what I want to move onto. The travel agent in Australia recommended real gap to volunteer through. The best part of being with Art In Tanzania has been meeting people in the house that I wouldn’t otherwise meet.
What have you liked about assisting in Al Quwiyyi School and Zanzibar Youth Alliance youth centre?
I’ve enjoyed the interaction with the children and learning Arabic and Swahili. I’ve also enjoyed learning about Ramadan and Eid. At the youth centre I’ve enjoyed learning to cook dishes I never knew how through the woman’s group. So much so I could open an African restaurant in Australia!
Has the experience changed you as a person?
Yes, it has made me more appreciative of what I have at home. Before I left I was thinking of going into social work and the experience has confirmed this.
What advice would give to volunteers wanting to teach-volunteer?
- Just do it
- It does take a few days for the children to open up so it makes a difference if you stay longer at the school. I planned to do 8 weeks, but you could do 4 weeks.
- Have a few resources such as educational games to help you in the classroom
- Be open to experiencing something different by exploring the Island after school and at the weekend to get the most out of your time.
- If you’re travelling alone it is better to stay in a volunteer house and if you’re female then be prepared to wear a headscarf and full dress in school and perhaps when you are out.