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Women's Empowerment Project in India
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Women's Empowerment Project in India

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Volunteer Placement

    7

  • Program Administration

    4

  • Living Situation

    6

  • Community Engagement

    10

  • Health & Safety

    10

  • Day to Day Life

    10

Age is no barrier

First thing to say is that it was great fun and I wouldn't have missed it for anything. The fact that I was much older (70) than all the other volunteers seemed to matter not a jot and I found everyone so lovely and welcoming. Being around so many bright and caring young people was a pleasure. We got on like a house on fire. I opted to stay in a local hotel which was located just around the corner from the GVI Homestay so very convenient.

My favourite projects by far were those that addressed women's issues - three of us went to Tejus, a home for sexually abused teenagers. Another project was contributing to a state-wide Women's Initiatives Network programme which was the most rewarding thing I did - these women are amazing - building up businesses and standing on their own feet after being widowed, divorced or just downtrodden by their families. Another project took me right back to my previous teaching experience in the middle east - a residential school for adults wanting to improve their prospects with improved English. They were great.

But​, personally,​ I felt some of the projects were not particularly well thought-out​​. For example, twice a week we went to a home for destitute, often mentally ill, men and women where our objective was to keep them occupied for a couple of hours with arts and crafts and a bit of sport. Many of them were drugged up to the eyeballs and participation was spasmodic. We also taught English to some children in a Muslim school - fine, but nothing to do with what I went out for - Women's Empowerment​.​ The problem with that lies, I think, in the fact that the long-term manager of the WE programme, Katrin, left just as I got there to return to Germany. Her replacement was a lovely local Indian woman, but she was unprepared and ill-equipped to step into her shoes and was relying heavily on the expertise of some of the volunteers who will not be there permanently. She needs much more support and training. ​

​As far as GVI catering for mature volunteers, I do think you might want to pay more than lip-service to this. One small example is the nature of the documentation which we were all required to complete prior to arrival asking for next-of-kin details. Nowhere was there the opportunity to put 'husband' or 'wife', only 'other family member'! I would also personally have welcomed more about the projects before going out so that I could prepare some material rather than getting a lesson plan sorted on the morning of the project. I realise this is not always feasible but I think GVI should consider such possibilities, especially if you want to get the best out of your two-week volunteers. ​

That said, it was a super experience and one I'll remember for a long time to come. GVI is doing excellent work and you are to be congratulated. However, it is your volunteers who make GVI work, and so vitally important they get the most out of them.

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Volunteer Placement

    10

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Community Engagement

    10

  • Health & Safety

    10

  • Day to Day Life

    10

Great dedicated team

My memorable things are the flexibility, ability to just do under 2 weeks, fantastic location, great community projects, great dedicated team, sense of purpose & commitment, support to diverse volunteers, chance to keep touch, expand/continue/undertake/support more projects etc.

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Volunteer Placement

    10

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Community Engagement

    10

  • Health & Safety

    10

  • Day to Day Life

    10

I have thoroughly enjoyed the whole programme

I have loved every minute of volunteering on the Women's Empowerment Programme. I was also allowed to get involved on the sports programme which was fantastic. I couldn't possible choose one 'best aspects' as i have thoroughly enjoyed the whole programme / experience.

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Volunteer Placement

    10

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Community Engagement

    10

  • Health & Safety

    10

  • Day to Day Life

    10

Great experience

The highlights of my trip was getting to meet such amazing people (both from GVI and the partners). Learning so much about the culture and the country. Most of all, seeing how every girl and every woman (even every man) felt happy, grateful and empowered!

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Volunteer Placement

    10

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Community Engagement

    10

  • Health & Safety

    10

  • Day to Day Life

    10

My review about women empowerment project in India with GVI

Getting to meet such amazing people (both from GVI and the partners). Learning so much about the culture and the country. Most of all, seeing how every girl and every woman (even every man) felt happy, grateful and empowered!

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Volunteer Placement

    10

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Community Engagement

    10

  • Health & Safety

    10

  • Day to Day Life

    10

Enjoyable

The Brit Fort discussion group was definitely a highlight. PB each week was also very enjoyable.

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Volunteer Placement

    10

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Community Engagement

    10

  • Health & Safety

    10

  • Day to Day Life

    10

Sharing experiences

My most positive experience was going to the different project sites and being helpful and meeting different people and sharing experiences with them.

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Volunteer Placement

    10

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Community Engagement

    10

  • Health & Safety

    10

  • Day to Day Life

    10

The opportunity to help improve the lives of the girls at PB

I loved having the opportunity to help improve the lives of the girls at PB. They all have such amazing potential, they just need the opportunities to see that in themselves. The fact that me and other volunteers have been able to help them realise that just a little bit makes me incredibly happy and grateful. I've also loved meeting lots of new people and experienced a different culture.

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Volunteer Placement

    10

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Community Engagement

    10

  • Health & Safety

    10

  • Day to Day Life

    10

I loved all the projects

I loved all the projects, meeting lots of different people from around the world and getting to feel comfortable in a completely different country.

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Volunteer Placement

    10

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Community Engagement

    10

  • Health & Safety

    10

  • Day to Day Life

    10

I enjoyed my time

I enjoyed my time with GVI a lot, it was great to volunteer and live with like-minded people. Also as a single young woman I always felt safe where we were situated and even on side trips, it was nice to stay in a foreign place for three months whilst working to really get to know, not only the people you are helping but the locals and the local culture.

Institution Affiliates:

World Youth Student & Educational Travel Confederation