Trek to Teach stands out from other volunteer abroad programs I have come across. Multiple things initially drew to to Trek to Teach, notably the application process required and the duration of the program. The application process involved interviews, essays, and submitting a resume. The amount of work it took to apply to the program ensures that participants are serious about TTT and allows for the TTT staff to determine if participants will be a good fit or not. Additionally, the length of the program, 10 weeks, is long enough to begin seeing an improvement in student performance. It is not a short-lived program where there is no chance to see if an impact is being made or not, but it also isn't so long that it deters potential volunteers. Also, leading up to teaching in Nepal, there are a series of Skype sessions where previous teachers go over what to expect in Nepal and how to prepare.
Trek to Teach also has a dedicated and amazing staff, who create a vast support network for current teachers. Between the staff in Nepal and the many former teachers, I never felt alone or without adequate support during my stay in Nepal. If I had a concern or a question, someone way always there to help out. Everyone involved in Trek to Teach cares immensely, which makes for a positive experience.
The trek is difficult, even for experienced hikers. As someone with exercise induced asthma, I definitely struggled with it. I thought that I had trained a significant amount before leaving for Nepal, but I quickly realized that I could have trained more. Thankfully, because Trek to Teach has such caring and understanding staff, there is plenty of encouragement along the way.
During my time in Nepal I made so many new friends and had amazing experiences. I am still close with the family I lived with and I get updates from time to time on how my former students are doing. One of the most rewarding and fulfilling parts of the program was the exposure to a different way of life and all of the interesting people I was fortunate enough to meet during my time in Nepal. It was an exciting adventure and I will never forget it.