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World Camp

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About

World Camp has developed a curriculum that empowers young people to make healthy decisions, allowing them to be the positive change their communities so desperately need. World Camp is fixing clear targets on the challenges faced in their communities. World Camp is motivating young people to take pride in making healthy decisions for themselves and others.

Reviews

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stewjones77
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

I volunteered through World Camp, Inc. in 2011. I had heard about the organization through friends, but was most interested in volunteering with World Camp because of their deep commitment to HIV/AIDS education, which aligned well with my long term interests. On a really base level, I applied because I knew that an internship of this nature would be a great way to get an "on the ground perspective" for future jobs in the global health arena. However, upon arriving in Lilongwe in June of 2011, I quickly realized that World Camp was more than just a nice resume boost. My internship with World Camp was truly a moving experience that helped shape both my personal and professional perspective longterm. I walked away with a new understanding of poverty and the role HIV is currently playing in many developing countries, especially Malawi. Personally, I felt that in the two short months I was there, I grew so much as a person. Being exposed to such incredible poverty and disease is definitely challenging, but helped me not only appreciate all that I have, but solidified my desire to continue giving back in countries such as Malawi for the rest of my life. The people of Malawi have exceptional heart. I am forever touched by my experience with World Camp in Lilongwe, Malawi.

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Agarrett
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

World Camp is unique, extraordinary program that offers an experience not found within large non-profits or NGOs, which is why, for me at least, it was extremely rewarding and eye opening. I volunteered with WC in the summer of 2009, where not only did I meet and work with truly inspiring individuals, I also learned important lessons about who I am and what I hope to accomplish. Education, especially HIV/AIDs, is vital to developing countries such as Malawi - and I feel that World Camp is one of the few organizations that works directly with the people they are trying to help in order to efficiently come up with hard solutions to tough questions. Now, four years later, I find myself in graduate school studying International Affairs, which I can largely thank WC for inspiring me to get here. I recommend this program to anyone who is looking not only for meaningful work but who is asking tough questions about the world, themselves, and will never settle for an easy solution, because that is not what World Camp is. World Camp is for the believers and for those who will stop at nothing to help.

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abeckmann
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

I volunteered with World Camp in Malawi in 2009 and it totally changed my perspective on so many aspects of life. I had just come from two years of corporate life and felt very unfulfilled. World Camp was just what I needed. The organization did a fantastic job of giving us volunteers a chance to bond, make a real impact in Malawi, and be challenged.

It was inspiring to work along side passionate volunteers and program leaders who pushed me to give more of myself. Everyday I was pushed to my limits while at the same time, rewarded with amazing interactions with my Malawian students. I will never forget the daily joy of singing with our students every morning and afternoon. The memories are too numerous to list!

Overall, I left Malawi with a new mindset. Similar to other posts on here, I returned to the US more aware of the world and the problems that many people face. I gained a sense that I could really make a difference, and World Camp gave me the tools and awareness to continue to do so.

Highly recommended!!!

What would you improve about this program?
Longer program!
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jbrollier
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

World Camp changed my life - literally. During the economic crisis of 2008 I lost my job due to a layoff. Confused on what my next step was, I decided to volunteer. I learned of World Camp and was on a plane two months later.

I can't really say what my favorite part was - Malawi, my fellow volunteers, or the leaders who guided us through this journey - all had a huge impact on me. When I finally returned to the U.S., I was a different person: more empathetic, more centered, and more in touch with what life is like for those not born in a First World Country.

World Camp is an organization that practices what it preaches: you don't need unlimited funds or big name sponsors to change the world - you just need heart and determination. World Camp embodies both of these.

What would you improve about this program?
I wish the program was longer!
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MeganMc
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

I am confident that World Camp is one of the very best International Volunteer programs out there. I have volunteered with several non profits throughout the world, and World Camp was the most organized, professional, and cultivated programs I have come across. I volunteered with World Camp in 2009 and intended on volunteering for 5 weeks. At the end of my 5 weeks, I decided not to return home and participated in the second 5 week program WC offered that summer. My experience was fulfilling and I was developing a better understanding of the culture and focus topics. I had to stay and keep volunteering.

Prior to traveling to Malawi, WC offered pre-program support that was very informative and reassuring. Once in country, the Program Coordinators were extremely helpful when in came to settling in and preparing for the journey ahead. The goals and objectives of the curriculum are very apparent, and the lessons we teach are impactful. However, WC has an open-minded approach and encourages volunteers to give ideas and help to continuously develop a better curriculum. The 4 day camps are well refined and sustainable. As a volunteer, you are given great opportunities to immerse yourself in Malawian culture during camp and outside of camp. World Camp is genuinely concerned about volunteer's experiences, always offering a variety of adventures and team building activities.

I highly recommend World Camp to anyone considering volunteering abroad. It changed my life and will most certainly change yours!

What would you improve about this program?
I only had one opportunity per program for a home stay. The home stays are very enriching experiences and I wish I could have had more chances to stay in villages with families.

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Alumni Interviews

Alumni interviews are in-depth Q&A sessions with verified alumni.

Jay Bostick

Jay Bostick is from Houston, Texas. He did his undergrad and Master's at Loyola University Chicago. He volunteered with World Camp in 2008 - 2009 at the age of 26 in Lilongwe, Malawi. He currently owns a small residential cleaning company in Houston.

Why did you decide to volunteer abroad with World Camp For Kids in Malawi?

Jay with Mpatso

Jay: In 2008 I was a casualty of the economic downturn in America. My practice at work did massive layoffs and I suddenly found myself without a job. I was sitting at home watching a Madonna concert special (stop laughing) and on the screen she flashed a link to her charity Raising Malawi.

Intrigued I went to the website which had a link for World Camp, which at the time was partnering with her charity. After reading about World Camp I knew I had to volunteer - I had done five summers as a Camp Counselor with Camp Hope - a camp for HIV positive children - and knew this would be an extension of that great experience.

Describe your day to day activities as a volunteer.

Jay: Wake up and have breakfast as a group. Get in our Jeep and drive to a remote village to teach for the day. Teach until about 3 PM and drive back to our home in the capitol, Lilongwe. Unwind before dinner with a group activity like swimming or shopping in the market.

Dinner as a group, then "Reflection" which was a nightly recap in which we all openly discussed our day, our challenges, and our triumphs. Go to bed, then wake up the next morning and do it all over again. We worked for three days, then had a day off, then started over again. 3 on / 1 off.

Tell me about one person you met.

Jay: I'd like to tell you about three.

Administrator - Jesse Pipes: Jesse is one of the founders of World Camp. Jesse is only a few years older than me, but an old soul. If I had an older brother, I would want it to be Jesse - he is kind, he is patient, but he also speaks his mind and is honest. Jesse asked me to join the Board of Directors after I returned to the U.S. and constantly sought me out to bounce ideas off of me, etc. Jesse made an effort to keep me engaged after the volunteer process so that I still was connected to the organization.

Fellow Volunteer - Jessica Dodson: Jessica was a sophomore or junior in college when we volunteered together (I was 26). Jessica comes from small-town Virginia and had never left the country before. Despite this she jumped in with both feet and was an inspiration to watch. She displayed maturity and confidence in everything she did - from teaching to mountain climbing on our off days to staying on "home stay" in a village with families we had never met before. We don't talk that often anymore, but I consider her a lifelong friend.

Translator - Jacqueline Kaongosora: a native Malawian and Chichewa speaker, Jackie served as one of my translators in the classroom. She was a college student in Uganda and would come home to Malawi on breaks, making money by translating for World Camp. Jackie did everything she could to teach us about Malawian culture and never batted an eyelash when we asked stupid questions or made cultural faux-pas.

I haven't been back to Malawi or seen Jackie in almost 6 years, but we still talk regularly on Facebook. She's an amazing person who is self-made and works tirelessly to make a better life for herself. I wish there was a way I could bring her to the U.S.

What was the best moment of the entire trip?

Jay: One of the extracurricular activities we could participate in was feeding and holding babies at the Crisis Nursery. The Crisis Nursery is a home that newborns live in if their mothers have died or if they are orphaned. When they are old enough to not need constant care they either go to an orphanage or back to their families (if they have any family that can care for them).

I used to go and feed an 8 month old baby named Mpatso. His name means "Gift from God" in Chichewa. One day I came to the Nursery to feed and hold the babies and Mpatso was gone. His father was able to care for him and so he returned to his village. I was so happy for him that he wouldn't end up in an orphanage, but also so sad that I wouldn't see him anymore.

How has this experience impacted your future?

Jay: I used to only care about work; I never felt like a relationship was in my future. I think seeing the abject poverty in Malawi the way I did really made me realize all you have is family. When I returned to the U.S. I left Chicago (where I had lived for 9 years) and moved home to Texas to be closer to my family. I also met someone and got married a year and a half ago. We are currently in the process of adopting two children. I am not sure this would have ever happened had I not participated in World Camp.

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