Subject: My homework
Date: Thu, 19 Oct 2000 18:12:43 GMT
I consider important to tell you some things about our program.
1. It is important that you know that we are an small organization
and we work in a informal basis. That means that we are not a legal
registered organization as a Foundation or some thing like that. The
reason is that is the only way to maintain a low cost program fees. We are
the cheapest program in Ecuador and this is the only way to offer this. We
don't have paid workers, we don't have office or properties. I have all
the administrative job and internet information service and my wife has
the operational coordination job in the schools and with the volunteers
when they are here. School principals and teacher participate only in the
aspects related to their own schools but they don't participate in the
intern administrative aspects. When people wants a big organization with a
famous name and large groups, we are not the option.
2. It is also
important that you know that we expect that you are able to work in group
or isolated. Some volunteers come with the idea of meeting other
volunteers from other countries and make friends and they become
disappointed when they find that the other
volunteers decided not to
come and they have to stay alone some weeks while other volunteers comes.
We have a program with a very high interaction with local people but we
can not guarantee that there will be other volunteers near you. It is
curious that some volunteers wants to learn Spanish and to immerse in the
local culture but when they arrive they only ask for the foreign
volunteers and only wants to speak in English. If you really want
know the country and the local people and other volunteers are not
important you will have a good time.
3. The must difficult thing
to explain to future volunteers is that you have to change something in
your mind about the program. You live and work in developed countries and
you are accustomed to planning things with many time in advance and you
are sure that things will happen as you planned. But here things are very
It is not easy to plan because all may change sudendly. For
example, in January there was a coupe d-etat and the president and
gouvernment changes. In april the gouvernement changed the local courrency
and now we are
usung us dollars as local courrency but they are many
social and economic problems and all prices are rising.
In May the
teachers union went to strike and all the public schools went closed for
more than two months. Not all because the schools where we have volunteers
they asked us to continue because they dont want to lose
volunteers help. Maybe for you is not difficult understand this because
you have previous experience in Africa.
We have one or two
projects where we think you can work but maybe one month before your
arrival they decide not to continue or maybe they expect that you are here
to see if you are going to bring a lot of money and when they see thay you
only wants to help and to work they become without interest. It is very
important not to imagine a lot of thing and is better to be here to see
things in a real manner.
4. But me and my wife we are sure
that always, no matter the circounstances, we are offering a very
important opportunities and that if you have an open mind you can have a
wonderful experience. Our actual volunteers says that they are having a
real experience and that they are surprised how sometimes we do more
things than the
large and famous organizations. We have enough
experience and knowlwdge to adjust to dificult situation and always we
find a solution to last minute problems.
Berengere, please read
this slowly and meditate on it. It is important. I expect a complete copy
(reply) with your agreement. But if you are not sure or you have a
different idea about what you want don't hesitate and tell me that you are
not interested in continuing and I will return your money by the same way.
If I receive your agreement I have still more things to say in