I was part of the Climate Compliance team #13. The reason why life brought me to one of the most beautiful places on earth was how I see it now, faith. My experience in Richmond Vale Academy was full of growth on a personal level. I had the opportunity to discover the best of myself, and it was partly because of the program. More than the numerous hikes, the amazing coral reefs, the stunning sunsets and magical black beaches, the encounter with the local culture was my favorite experience. Vincy people taught me to be happy above all. Their kindness and big hearts will be memories I will cherish all my life and that was a motivation to give my best during my time on the island.
As part of my program, I built together with some other fellow teammates a water reservoir for our organic garden. As responsible of a portion of the schools nutrition by co-running the 3 greenhouses and surrounding areas, I had the opportunity to learn a lot about Permaculture. Personally, this was one of the main reasons for me to enroll on the program, so I was very satisfied with the outcome of it, at the extent that after the island I pursued a Permaculture Design Course and I plan to make it as my way of living in the near future. Additionally to my learning outcomes, I participated on the establishment of a farmers market, initiative that friends from the previous team begun and I continued with the support of other teammates. This was a beautiful experience to bond with the local community, and I am grateful enough to call many of the people I knew there my friends.
I also had the opportunity to know a little bit of the country visiting a nearby island called Bequia. It was part of one of the research tasks of the program and the objective was to learn about eco-tourism.
Living in the school is a challenging experience. You learn how to live in community and to respect each others space, contributing to maintaining things running and working hard. I liked the fact that the learning outcomes are set by yourself. the school is a platform but you are responsible for your knowledge and your ambitions with the program. I think this helped me build character and determination.
Finally, it is a great opportunity to meet amazing people. I made real friends that I still see today despite the time and place difference. Being surrounded by people with similar goals in life show you that theres is so much to do in this world but the only option is doing it together.
As a recommendation to people wanting to follow the program, I would say ask all the questions you need to do before going. Think if what the program offers is really what you are looking for and once you make that decision fully commit to it, enjoy it and give your best. In conclusion, make your time there count.