Ariella Neumann

What position do you hold at GoEco? What inspired you to join their team?

Ariella Newmann, GoEco volunteer placement coordinator

Ariella: I am the volunteer placement coordinator. Basically, I am your first port of call to help you decide exactly which program is the best fit for you and to answer any questions or special requests you may have.

I was inspired by the opportunity to be able to work with an organization that is really having an impact on the global conservation effort.

I was also hugely inspired by the work GoEco is doing in Israel by bringing light to Israel's many advanced ecological projects while also promoting multiculturalism and different communities working side by side. After being here a few months, I was sent on my first volunteer trip to the wildlife sanctuary in South Africa.

After this experience I knew I had to do everything in my power to spread the word and it has made my work all that more meaningful. It is also great to come to an office every day with like-minded people who are all working to give our volunteers the most memorable experience!

What do you most enjoy about your role?

Ariella: I think one of my favorite memories as placement coordinator was when I had two senior volunteers applying separately, both from the United States. And both didn’t want to share a room with 'students.'

Although one had applied for a different project, I suggested that they volunteer together and ended up putting them in touch! It was a great feeling to know I brought them together and they each had a travel partner for their volunteer trip!

I love the response I get when people return with unforgettable memories. I think what I enjoy most about my job is knowing that I helped make that happen.

What is your favorite aspect of GoEco's programs?

Ariella: My favorite aspect of GoEco’s programs is their authenticity. GoEco really works to makes sure all of their projects are not just genuine but beneficial for the volunteers as well as the local community and environment. Most of all, GoEco projects are well organized and fun!

What is your favorite aspect of GoEco's programs?

Ariella: There are so many unique and amazing stories from volunteers. I think by simply participating everyone walks away with an extraordinary story!

One that sticks out in my mind is from volunteer Reanna that joined the Greece Sea Turtle Conversation Project. During her placement she had to run to the rescue of hatchlings that were emerging from a nest in the middle of a beach side restaurant.

Without much time to think she had to quickly put into practice everything she had learned by making sure bystanders put the turtles down on the sand so that they could naturally make their way to the sea while also eliminating surrounding light pollution from the restaurant and road traffic so as not to confuse the hatchlings even more.

It is an amazing story and you can read all about how her and her team of volunteers helped guide the turtles back to sea on our GoEco blog.

What advice do you have for someone considering their first volunteer trip abroad?

Ariella: There are so many unique and amazing stories from volunteers. I think by simply participating everyone walks away with an extraordinary story!