Sally Short - 2014 Program Participant

Why did you decide to join the Tropical Research and Conservation Centre (TRACC) in Malaysia?

I love to Travel and I love to dive, The UK is too cold!!! I researched TRACC and they are actually doing some great work, protecting coral reefs and advocating for shark protection.

What did you like most about Malaysia? 

The underwater. Diving is a passion, and there were many great marine creatures to find and study. The beach and the sunset were also superb.

Individuals preparing to Scuba Dive in Malaysia during a volunteer program

Preparing to Scuba Dive in Malaysia.

What made your program stand apart from other programs in Malaysia?

A real marine conservation programme and a growing community development project.

How involved were local staff? How did they affect your experience? 

The science staff taught me a lot, The diving staff made sure I was safe. The cooks were excellent. I am vegetarian and the food was great not simply a meat based meal with a veg side but a series of excellent veg option dishes. The carnivores seemed to do OK as well.

If you could change one thing about your experience, what would it be? 

Stayed longer

What was a typical day like for you?

Breakfast - dive - lunch - nap - dive - sunset chill - dinner - night dive or socialising. REPEAT.

What was your favorite part of your program outside of diving?

Sleeping in the hammocks under the stars.

What type of accommodation did you have? What did you like best about it? 

We were in individual tents, one person, one tent, except couples who had two tents. The tents were large enough and equipped with fans and electricity so they were very comfortable.

How have your experiences abroad affected your life back at home?

I can’t settle at "home" I want to travel more and become a full time travel writer.

Why do you love travel?

Unless you travel you don't have any perspective on global issues.

What do you feel the biggest career benefit of participating in your program has been?

Interviews, presentations, confidence.

Where do you hope to travel to next?

Not sure, probably Europe and then back to somewhere I can go diving.