Staff Spotlight: Nick Herrick

Volunteer Coordinator
Nick started out with GVI as a volunteer in 2010 and has since been with GVI a part of both South African and Costa Rican field teams, with the UK Outreach team and in the office in his current role.

man giving thumbs up

What is your favorite travel memory?

It's always hard to forget your first experience of traveling. For me that was New Zealand at the age of 4 to visit family. Since then I have been lucky to visit many countries and my volunteer experience led me into a world that I never expected but have thoroughly enjoyed.

What do you believe to be the biggest factor in being a successful company?

One of the most important factors for GVI is the satisfaction we see in the overwhelming majority of our volunteers. I finally booked because a friend of mine had a great experience with GVI on a different project. When I was lucky enough to visit that project a few years later they still remembered her fondly.

How have you changed/grown since working for your current company?

I joined having no idea what I would do with my life and with the hope that 3 months of volunteering would help. 5 years on I have grown a huge amount and picked up vital skills, both specific and general. My outlook on life has changed, I think for the better, and I have a drive to improve the world around me and myself that was perhaps there before but much more evident now.

What unique qualities does your company possess?

We have maintained a family feel despite the growth of the organization. There are people that I have met over the last 5 years with GVI that are some of my closest friends and I know that a lot of people would say the same thing. While fostering this welcoming and comfortable atmosphere we have also managed to make real and significant impacts on all of our project bases and worked with some incredible local and international partners. Our incredible and unique field staff team make all of this possible.

Describe a time when you felt especially proud to be part of your current team

I am regularly proud to be a part of this team but I think in some ways the best qualities come out in the worst circumstances and GVI's response to emergencies, such as the Nepal Earthquake, is something that we are rightly proud of and noted for. In that specific incident it was a response that I was involved with and the speed and orchestration of the response, both with a view to our volunteers and staff and also in support of our partners was incredible and something that I was proud to watch and be a part of.

What is the best story you've heard from a return student?

As a former field staff member I'm still in touch with a lot of former volunteers, interns and staff members so I have had some great stories of people going on to change careers or further careers in teaching, development and conservation. My favorite story at the moment is one of our former volunteers from Laos who has gone home with a completely different outlook and is now working to start an initiative to teach teenagers in her area about global issues and give them an opportunity not only to understand the world they live in but also to visit some of the more challenging places and make a difference themselves. This kind of impact on volunteers is absolutely what we hope for.