Overall Rating:/ 10I left South Africa a couple of weeks ago, and it’s still hard for me to talk about the Surf and Adventure project without shedding tears.
I arrived in Cape Town on June 10th and stared my volunteer program the very next day. The local team was there for me (us) the entire time, whether I had questions about food, touristic activities, or the project, I always had the best answers. And that is because the local team has a really complex and deep understanding of South Africa’s problems (it sounds logical, but it’s not. Most people around the world have very simplistic perspectives), and that is what I was taught. They love the kids and feel true passion about the projects. Now I have a much better understanding of the reality of townships and settlements of Cape Town, and the structural violence around them.
For me it was very important to learn and experience South Africa’s problems, but also to get to know the country’s mind blowing natural beauty, and the local team was also the best advisor in that subject. They know the best and most responsible eco-tourism companies in the region. So I got the opportunity to go shark-cage diving, hiking, paragliding, wine tasting, penguin viewing, and surfing, with the very best. All this, accompanied with a great group of volunteers/friends.
I am very used to traveling alone, and it comes really easy to me to make friends, but in this case it was so much easier than usual. I felt part of the staff-volunteer family the very first day. The local team understands perfectly that volunteers are generally young people that want to have a good time, so they have weekly brais (barbecues), and nights out that work perfectly as icebreakers.
It was, without question, one of the best experiences of my life and I cannot wait to go back…. Hopefully sometime next year, and definitely for a longer period of time. Thank you Love Volunteers for making this experience possible!