Staff Spotlight: Carmen Rae Kingwill

Program Coordinator


Tell us about yourself, Carmen.

I am a local South African who has a passion for serving and connecting with people and love the outdoors and adventure sports. I have lived across South Africa and traveled in the USA and Europe.

What is your favorite travel memory?

I love music. I love singing. I love musicals. And I've always had a love for Greece (thanks to a Greek teacher back when I was in 4th Grade and hence a visit to Greece in 2017).

When I was in 11th Grade, I played a lead role in our school's music production, Mamma Mia. So on a visit to Santorini, I had the songs of Mamma Mia going through my head and the movie playing in my mind as I walked around the little towns. After a day of exploring the pretty island I caught a bus back to my accommodation, unfortunately, I missed my stop, jumped out at the next one and walking back to the accommodation I passed an Open Air Movie Cinema. And guess what movie was about to start showing?Mamma Mia!

I bought a ticket (using the minimal amount of Euros I had left) and there I was, this singing and music loving fan, watching one of my favorite movies, in the very place where the movie was filmed! Crazy!

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

VACorps has broadened my knowledge of world geography and cultures and I have developed my people and project management skills. I have also been pushed out of my own comfort zones as I have started using public transport in Cape Town and I've had the privilege of being exposed to many new adventure experiences in and around Cape Town that I may never have done had I not worked for VACorps.

If you could go on any program that your company offers, which one would you choose and why?

I would definitely choose the education program! As much as children are tiring, noisy and busy, the love that they give in return to any attention you give them is absolutely worth all the challenges. Children just have so much love to give and they light up your day with their quirky comments, hugs, and drawings.

I also feel one can make such a beneficial impact on the lives of children and even if you only spend two weeks with them you can make an impression on them.

What makes your company unique? When were you especially proud of your team?

The VACorps staff are AWESOME, they are all so invested in the company and making the program and the experiences of the interns as successful, impactful and fun as possible. I look forward to coming to work and hanging out with my colleagues every day -- it's not a staff team, it's a family!

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

Communication! Clear, open and direct communication. VACorps gets this right through the many awesome platforms they have in place so that we (the staff) are all aware of what we are doing and we can all easily access the necessary documentation and correspondence.

However, we also have much correspondence and an open-communication policy with all our interns and this plays a great role in the success of our program.