I arrived in Samana on the 16th October 2017. As soon as I got off the bus I was welcomed by my ‘buddy’ (A volunteer who introduces you to Samana for the first few days) and one of the coordinator’s. This friendly welcome helped me to settle into the Dominican Lifestyle which is drastically different from the United Kingdom. I was introduced to the NGO team who I would be working with for the 8 weeks and the other volunteers who were volunteering with the charity. I realised very quickly that the coordinators and volunteers were all extremely passionate about their work as they knew that this was having a direct impact on the children of the Special Needs school which the ADP run. I was assigned multiple tasks ranging from researching new agencies that promote the charity to translating text into English. This was a great chance to develop my team working skills, time management and skills working independently. I was given the opportunity to teach English to the Dominicans which I took
straight away. This was a great chance to assist with their personal development and wellbeing as it would help them get jobs in the booming tourism sector. I thoroughly enjoyed planning and presenting these lessons and watching their English progress I was never worried about being bored, there was always work to do and at the weekends we would go to a beach or to a local excursion. These were perfect to conclude a week of volunteering and gave me a chance to see more of the Dominican Culture and the countryside. In my 8 weeks here I have had the chance to work with disabled children, learn about veterinary, teach english, gain experience and help with the management of a small NGO, learnt (somewhat) how to dance the Dominican way, found out how to exit a hammock after multiple failed attempts and met a fantastic group of volunteers who I will be sure to see again sometime in the future. I couldn’t have asked for a better 8 weeks and I will be sure to miss the children, the volunteers and of course, the sun.