The month I spent in an overseas region of France, called Guadeloupe, was arguably one of the greatest months of my life. The 27 day program provided an incredible amount of insight and fulfillment, particularly as we worked with the community of Capesterre on the smaller island of Marie-Galante. This service adventure sent me outside of my comfort zone, allowing me to truly face (and overcome) the challenges that life often sets before me. AN example -- I was afraid of speaking French at first, but the environment created both by my peers and by the VISIONS staff allowed me to become much more proficient in the language and have fun with it.
Spending a month with 23 other kids that I had never met before was also incredible - I felt like I was able to get to know everyone on a very personal level, as everyone was completely on their own to be themselves; without the influence of friends back home or the pressure to be someone that they're not. ust the real people for everything that they are. For me, half of the trip was focused on being able to connect with and adequately serve the community on the island, while the other half of the trip was (as I said before) getting to know so many different and unique people in such an equally unique and different place.
Beyond that, the six VISIONS staff members that were with us respectfully maintained a position of authority while simultaneously providing us with the opportunity to be friendly and amicable - each and every staff member went above and beyond the "call of duty" for this type of trip and worked their hardest to make it a bettering experience for all of us. I've committed myself to returning to Guadeloupe one day, but I know for a fact it won't be the same without the incredible people and without the incredible program that I shared the experience with the first time.
Please reply with any questions and I'll be happy to answer them, and vouch for this great program!