Poland | School Language Assistant | Rebecca | 19

Rebecca, a 19-year-old from Germany, embarked on a transformative volunteering experience with New Ventures Worldwide (NVW) at a school in Poland. Rebecca’s role as a School Language Assistant involved conducting language classes for English and German, utilising interactive methods like games and role-plays to engage students and improve their communication skills. Despite initial challenges in receiving her allowance, Rebecca worked with the school to resolve this and receive her payment. Most of all, she finds fulfilment in working with children and enhancing her teaching abilities.

“I love working with kids and have developed excellent teaching skills. Getting paid my allowance was more complicated than anticipated, as I needed a different bank account, but NVW supported me through it.”

Motivation to Volunteer

Rebecca’s passion for languages and teaching and a desire for travel led her to discover NVW through online research. Motivated by the opportunity to explore new horizons economically while pursuing her interests, Rebecca embraced the chance to make a difference through volunteering.

“I had no plans after school and wanted to try something different. I’m interested in languages and teaching, so this is perfect.”

Living Away for the First Time

While adjusting to life away from her parents posed initial challenges, Rebecca found solace in her new temporary family and embraced the newfound independence. Poland’s warm and hospitable people helped her settle into the new environment, allowing her to feel comfortable and welcomed.

“It’s hard living away from my parents, but the Polish people are very warm and hospitable, which made it easier for me to settle in.”

Food and Accommodation

Rebecca enjoyed meals prepared by the school and her host families, offering a taste of home while experiencing diverse culinary experiences. With each two-month stay with a different host family, Rebecca cherished the opportunity to forge bonds and explore new activities, like visiting water parks on weekends.

“The food is similar to Germany, so it is great. I always have a private room and generally hang out with the family, going out on the weekends, playing games at home and going on trips.”

Experience with VIA and NVW

Rebecca found the enrolment process with VIA and NVW straightforward, with efficient communication reassuring her throughout. Despite initial expectations of complexity, Rebecca appreciated the ease of navigating the program, highlighting the support received during administrative procedures.

“The communication with VIA and NVW was speedy and efficient.”

Personal Growth and Future Aspirations

Rebecca reflects on the profound personal growth she experienced during her year abroad. From overcoming shyness to embracing openness and risk-taking, Rebecca credits her volunteering experience for shaping her aspirations, reaffirming her dream of becoming a language teacher while fostering a love for working with children and languages.

“A year abroad is a big milestone in my life. My dream job is as a language teacher, and this experience has confirmed that. I love working with kids and languages.”

Advice for Aspiring Volunteers

Rebecca encourages prospective volunteers to seize the opportunity without hesitation, emphasising the enriching and unforgettable nature of the experience. With a resounding endorsement, Rebecca implores others to embark on their journey confidently, knowing it will be a decision they won’t regret.

“Just do it! It is an unforgettable experience that you won’t regret!”