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Volunteer Abroad in Romania - United Planet - 1-12 Weeks

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Volunteer Experience

    10

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Living Situation

    9

  • Community Impact

    7

  • Health and Safety

    10

  • Social Life

    10

This experience has impacted my life in such a great way

Getting to know all these children and their stories was unbelievable and being able to emerge myself into their culture was great. What I enjoyed the most was feeling like I was a part of their community. By the end of my quest, I felt right at home. My favorite parts were days of having picnics in the forest, engagement parties, and simply playing games with the children. Great experience!!

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Volunteer Experience

    9

  • Program Administration

    9

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Community Impact

    8

  • Health and Safety

    10

  • Social Life

    10

An experience beyond words

Romania is by far one of the most beautiful places on earth. [The United Planet project] is a community nestled in between green hills and bordered by forests. The community is kind and working with the kids was an experience beyond words. While the language barrier is challenging there are a few people around who speak English making it a bit easier.

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Volunteer Experience

    10

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Community Impact

    10

  • Health and Safety

    10

  • Social Life

    10

My experience as a volunteer in Romania was amazing

My experience as a volunteer in Romania at was amazing. The majority of my experience was spent volunteering/working with children who have been abandoned. I played with them, as well as helped the women who take care of them around the house. The children were some of the sweetest children I have ever met. The women that came to take care of these children, who have families of their own, were so kind and selfless.

As a volunteer I was also given the opportunity to see Romania. Myself and the other volunteer a visited castles, the center of Brasov and several Romanian Monasteries. Romania is such a beautiful country and being able to explore it was an incredible opportunity.

The community filled with such a diverse group of people. Everyone I met was so kind and interested in getting to know me. They helped and were supportive anytime I did not understand something because of the very little Romanian I knew. The woman in charge of the volunteer house made every effort possible to make sure I was comfortable and had everything I needed. She was so kind and was one of the most inspiring people I met on this journey. Overall, my experience was excellent. This was my first experience abroad and it most definitely took me outside of my comfort zone. However, it allowed me to grow and learn more than I ever could describe. If I ever am able to return I most certain would.

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Volunteer Experience

    10

  • Program Administration

    9

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Community Impact

    10

  • Health and Safety

    10

  • Social Life

    10

The staff was amazing and kind, and they made me feel like apart of their own family

The staff at the project were some of the most hospitable and kind people I have ever had the pleasure of working with. There was always something for me to do. I loved the kids and the people I worked with, and the overall experience was great.

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Volunteer Experience

    10

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Community Impact

    9

  • Health and Safety

    10

  • Social Life

    10

The people in Romania were generally very generous and thankful for our support

I enjoyed the people mostly in Romania, and also the work that my team had to do since it was for a good cause, in which case the work was challenging since it was really time consuming work, and it tired me out mostly from enjoying the rest of the day. We were well prepared and organized, in which case lead no problem upon our departure with my team.

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Volunteer Experience

    10

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Community Impact

    10

  • Health and Safety

    10

  • Social Life

    9

This was an excellent experience

This was an excellent experience because of how the people were very welcoming. They were so happy to see us and they learned a lot from us and and I learned more about them. I also learned more about myself as who I am. I had an experience on something that I never did before or thought that I wouldn't do which was great. Overall I loved the people they were there for us since the day we got there and they made us feel like Romania was home. I also liked how the community was like a family.

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Volunteer Experience

    10

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Community Impact

    10

  • Health and Safety

    10

  • Social Life

    10

My quest was awesome

My quest was awesome. I could not have asked for a better first international experience, the United Planet staff, the in-country staff, and the people in Romania made my experience so comfortable and welcoming. Romanian culture was so hospitable and open, I was able to learn about my hosts and their daily lives. I also learned quite a bit of Romanian and I was having basic conversations by the end of my week there. The connections I made with the children and staff left me with such an attachment to the experience that it was hard to leave at the end of the week. I had no idea what I was getting myself into going to Romania, but now because of the organization and United Planet I cannot wait to return.

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Volunteer Experience

    N/A

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Community Impact

    N/A

  • Program Administration

    N/A

  • Health and Safety

    10

  • Social Life

    N/A

My alternative break in Romania has been my most cherished memory in college so far

My trip to Valea Screzii, Romania was my first visit to Europe and was definitely be an unforgettable experience.

For two days we traveled to Valea du Munte to help construct a building for the village for high school students to live in. This building was much closer to their high school, therfore
saving them time and money from having to take the 3 hour long bus ride to school everyday. We were glad to help, and got a lot of work done making concrete. We also helped make concrete in Valea Screzii, which we used to make a basketball court.

My alternative break in Romania has been my most cherished memory in college so far. All of my experiences that I have made and shared with other engineering students have been unforgettable and truly amazing. This trip has inspired me to want to keep traveling and exploring different parts of the world, and to learn more about different cultures every chance that I get.

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Volunteer Experience

    N/A

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Community Impact

    N/A

  • Program Administration

    9

  • Health and Safety

    10

  • Social Life

    N/A

It felt like we made a real difference.

The thing I enjoyed most about the trip to Romania was the incredibly kind and inviting people of Pro Vita. They took us in, made us feel welcome, and as a result, it felt like we made a real difference. The Quest taught me a lot about working with other people with limited communication.

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Volunteer Experience

    N/A

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Community Impact

    N/A

  • Program Administration

    N/A

  • Health and Safety

    N/A

  • Social Life

    N/A

Exceeding expectations abroad!

A little nervous and not fully aware of what to expect, my expectations of one week in Romania were exceeded. The people, culture, land, and language are incredible. Far removed from my day to day life in New York City, I could focus on others and leave every worry behind. The clarity, perspective and maturity I gained over my one week stint is noticeable, by others and by most importantly me.

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Volunteer Experience

    N/A

  • Living Situation

    N/A

  • Community Impact

    N/A

  • Program Administration

    N/A

  • Health and Safety

    N/A

  • Social Life

    N/A

Incredible and Life Changing Experience!

My experience was incredible and life changing. I learned about a new culture and lifestyle that I was never aware of before. The children and adults that I worked with were so loving and generous. The people who ran my volunteer site were amazing and so comfortable to be around. They made Romania like home to me. I wish to return there as much as I can because I know the children still need a lot of help there. They really mean a lot to me and I hope that I can make a huge difference in the future. I feel like I did a lot already and they're always in need of more volunteers so I think I will take more volunteers with me next year.

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Volunteer Experience

    N/A

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Community Impact

    N/A

  • Program Administration

    N/A

  • Health and Safety

    N/A

  • Social Life

    N/A

I learned so much!

My time spent in Romania taught me much more than I expected. Before arriving, I did not know what to expect although I had a picture in my head of what I imagined it could be like. I knew as well that I would be coming to a new place and a different culture, meeting many different types of people.I am naturally a shy person and am always introverted around new surroundings. When I first arrived, I did not know if it was normal to be so scared of a new place. Looking back, I was more scared that I would have a harder time adapting and I was more afraid of my own timidness than this new place I was in.I ended up being very comfortable because there were lots of volunteers around me that I could talk to. If I was homesick or in a bad mood, I could always speak freely about it to them and they did the same to me. What also helped me open up was the supportive staff. They allowed me to go to them with any problem or issue I was having. If I ever needed a break from everything, they were willing to help me with anything. Often while I was there, my life back home kept making me second guess myself. I was in this beautiful country and experiencing things I had never experienced before, but I was still wondering what on earth I was going to do with myself when I returned home.Something really amazing about my quest was that Romania taught me so much more than how to be a volunteer and work really hard. It taught me to open up and realize what was really necessary and important in my own world.I met some of the greatest people while staying in Romania. A lot of them are younger than me and probably do not even realize the full extent of how much they taught me. I look up to their hard work, their passion, their bravery. They taught me that not everything could get done in a day, it took time, patience and more hard work than most people could ever imagine possible. They taught me that not everyday had to be a good day. There will always be days that just do not go well and sometimes everyone needs to have a bad day. I look up to the days where there were smiling faces and laughter. I look up to the good days I spent in Romania- because they were real. I look up to the fact that people from all over the world go there trying to help in some way while also trying to figure something out about themselves as well.I stayed in Romania for 3 months. I was sad to leave it and head back home. Sometimes, I missed home a lot but I eventually became really comfortable with Romania and it’s culture. I even became comfortable enough to speak Romanian with more ease around native speakers, and not feel frightened about their reactions to me. Patience was key. If I was patient with who I was but also took risks such as interacting with people even though I was scared or trying to speak the language even though I thought I would sound ridiculous, it would really make a big difference in my entire quest experience.There were things I missed that I had at my fingertips everyday in America. I lost my eagerness to check my email daily or make extremely expensive text messages home. Little things lost their importance and what is great is that the little things were really just the beginning. I learned so much during my time in Romania. I let myself adapt to Romania instead of expecting Romania to adapt to me. That lesson in itself has taught me so much and continues to everyday since I have been there.

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Volunteer Experience

    N/A

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Community Impact

    N/A

  • Program Administration

    N/A

  • Health and Safety

    N/A

  • Social Life

    N/A

I fell in love with Romania

From the first day at my program I fell in love with the children and scenery. Surrounded by beautiful mountains the program site is a picturesque place to spend time volunteering. All of the children and staff in the village were so welcoming and kind. I enjoyed spending time with all of the children and found it so difficult to leave! I can't wait to return next summer!

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Volunteer Experience

    N/A

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Community Impact

    N/A

  • Program Administration

    N/A

  • Health and Safety

    N/A

  • Social Life

    N/A

An incredible four weeks

I went to Romania expecting to have a good experience and came home having had the most incredible four weeks there I could have possibly imagined. I learned more and grew more than I ever thought possible. The people at my volunteer site gave me an experience I will never forget.

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Volunteer Experience

    N/A

  • Living Situation

    N/A

  • Community Impact

    N/A

  • Program Administration

    N/A

  • Health and Safety

    N/A

  • Social Life

    N/A

The most incredible four weeks I could have possibly imagined!

I went to Romania expecting to have a good experience and came home having had the most incredible four weeks there I could have possibly imagined. I learned more and grew more than I ever thought possible. The people at Pro Vita gave me an experience I will never forget.

Overall Rating

9/ 10

  • Volunteer Experience

    10

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Living Situation

    6

  • Community Impact

    10

  • Health and Safety

    10

  • Social Life

    10

I definitely would go back!

The overall experience was great. The language was challenging, but I manage to get by. It was difficult being a caretaker for these children but they were entertaining and enjoyable to be with. I was fortunate to be with Dutch artist and musician and they were kind of enough to let me assist in their workshops with the children. They held a show at the end of their stay that was enjoyable to watch. The scenery around the project site was beautiful. The highlight was seeing the two castles : Bran and Peles. I Definitely would go back as a group.

Overall Rating

9/ 10

  • Volunteer Experience

    9

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Community Impact

    9

  • Health and Safety

    9

  • Social Life

    10

My Quest experience was the most challenging and impactful experience that I've had yet in my life.

My Quest experience was the most challenging and impactful experience that I've had yet in my life. I think that everyone needs to step out of their comfort zones and live a life in stark contrast with their own. This is the only way you can grow as a person. My time in the community of Romania has opened my eyes to poverty, to domestic abuse, to mental and physical disabilities, and to the lives of orphans. Each of these ideas you hear about but you don't really know or understand them until you live it. The amount of love and happiness that these people find in their simple and difficult lives has inspired me. They taught me that the most important thing in life is family, whether it be by blood or by love. They allowed me to become a part of their family and that has forever changed me. I will go home with a new appreciation for my father, my mother, my sister, my community of supportive friends, and the life that I live. Never again will I take for granted all that I have. If you can take the time to spend a week, a month, whatever amount of time, serving others, while learning about another culture and way of living, you will come back home with a better understanding of who you are and how you fit in this amazing world.

Overall Rating

9/ 10

  • Volunteer Experience

    9

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Community Impact

    6

  • Health and Safety

    9

  • Social Life

    9

This experience was unlike anything I've ever taken part in before

This experience was unlike anything I've ever taken part in before. I got the opportunity to immerse myself in an entirely different culture, world, and continent. My favorite part of my quest was how open, respectful and grateful all of the members of the community that I lived in were. They all thanked us for our time, constantly mentioned how much we were impacting them even in just a short period of time, and really made us know that we were appreciated. I also loved that I got to start learning a new language. It was definitely challenging having the language barrier there and not a lot of people around that spoke English, but it forced me to critically think and try to communicate with others who do not share a common language.

Overall Rating

9/ 10

  • Volunteer Experience

    N/A

  • Living Situation

    N/A

  • Community Impact

    N/A

  • Program Administration

    N/A

  • Health and Safety

    N/A

  • Social Life

    N/A

plePlease look into the alternative break opportunities, I can assure you they are worth it.

For the week of August 10th, 2014, four students from the University of Tennessee College of Engineering went to a village in Romania to help with the construction of a High School dormitory. The four students were Robert Minneci, Jonathan Jones, and Kelli Grissom and I. Jon and I are Chemical Engineering students, Robert is studying Material Sciences, and Kelli is a Civil Engineering student. We were led by Judith Mallory, the International Coordinator for the College of Engineering. The trip was coordinated through United Planet.
We arrived in Romania on the 11th and proceeded to travel two hours outside of Bucharest to a village called Valea Screzii, established by Pro Vita. Pro Vita is run by an NGO and it takes care of and houses orphans, single mothers, elderly, and mentally handicapped adults. While Romania was under communist rule until 1989, some orphans were treated horrifically, resulting in disabilities in adulthood. This organization is comprised of many houses, all donated by outside sources, in which the children live in groups like families. Each house has a kitchen and an adult to help provide meals and care to the residents.
Our project was to help build a dormitory-style building near the local high school. By staying here instead of Valea Screzii, which is about 45 minutes away, students can avoid the three hour bus ride every day and get more accustomed to living on their own, while still having adults there to feed and tutor them. We mixed and poured concrete for wall supports on the second floor. Kelli, Judith, and I mixed the sand, water, pebbles, and cement to make the concrete while Jon and Robert worked up on the second floor, pouring the concrete into the supports. We managed to get half of the supports done over two days. On another day, we worked in Valea Screzii, mixing and pouring concrete, this time to form a driveway. We were able to finish the work that day as well.
In our free time, we were able to embrace the full cultural experience that Romania has to offer. From scenic chapels on top of hills to downtown Bucharest, Romania has everything one could desire in a country. We got to hike to the top of a mountain, see Dracula’s castle, tour the second largest government building in the world, and meet some of the nicest people ever.
This trip has been one of the most rewarding and educational opportunities I have gotten to experience. The organization of Pro Vita deserves all the help in the world. I wish everyone could see the difference they are making in the amazing country of Romania.
To my fellow students, please look into the alternative break opportunities, I can assure you they are worth it.

Overall Rating

9/ 10

  • Volunteer Experience

    N/A

  • Living Situation

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  • Community Impact

    N/A

  • Program Administration

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  • Health and Safety

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  • Social Life

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Romania Was Incredible!

My trip to Romania was an incredible experience and I am very thankful for all United Planet did to make it possible.

Overall Rating

9/ 10

  • Volunteer Experience

    N/A

  • Living Situation

    N/A

  • Community Impact

    N/A

  • Program Administration

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  • Health and Safety

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  • Social Life

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I love the people!

Volunteering in Romania was an amazing experience! I love the people, culture, and country. Volunteers do some outside work and also plan activities for the children.

Overall Rating

9/ 10

  • Volunteer Experience

    N/A

  • Living Situation

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  • Community Impact

    N/A

  • Program Administration

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  • Health and Safety

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  • Social Life

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Romania Was Amazing!

My experience was fantastic-the locals made us feel so welcome & I made many friends. We got to experience local life in Romania, as well as have an excursion to some historical castles. Romania was amazing!!!

Overall Rating

9/ 10

  • Volunteer Experience

    N/A

  • Living Situation

    N/A

  • Community Impact

    N/A

  • Program Administration

    N/A

  • Health and Safety

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  • Social Life

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Every Day in Romania Taught me Something New!

My time spent in Romania was very rewarding, i spent a lot of time getting to know the children and their stories. The other volunteers also helped me in settling in in my first week. Every day i spent in Romania taught me something new, Children younger than me taught me to appreciate everything i've got and many of the adults and parents their showed me that family is anyone and everyone that loves you.

Overall Rating

9/ 10

  • Volunteer Experience

    N/A

  • Living Situation

    N/A

  • Community Impact

    N/A

  • Program Administration

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  • Health and Safety

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  • Social Life

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Orphanage/Street Children in Romania

Going to Romania was amazing, a short two week trip that will be the start to the rest of my life. I built up more confidence and learnt more about child care. It was really nice to see how the children were so happy! Especially after the history of Romanian orphanages.

Overall Rating

9/ 10

  • Volunteer Experience

    8

  • Living Situation

    9

  • Community Impact

    9

  • Program Administration

    6

  • Health and Safety

    N/A

  • Social Life

    N/A

Rewarding

My volunteer quest in Romania was a rewarding and eye-opening experience. I really enjoyed getting to know the children at the orphanage, playing games with them and immersing myself as part of the community. While some of the cultural and language differences were confronting at times, I believe being placed outside my comfort zone was an invaluable part of my experience.