I spent months searching for a place to volunteer in East Africa and kept coming back to GHTA, because of the variety of the program and the fact that all my money was going directly to the project.
I could not have made a better choice!
From the moment I was met at the airport to my departure almost six months later I had the most incredible experience. The highlights were: teaching the women - English four mornings a week - and building up a relationship with them; the Friday morning visits to the students' homes- sometimes a 40-50 minute journey on foot or by dala dala into the Kilimanjaro foothills; making new friends with the project workers and volunteers; and the variety of things to do - teaching adults, working with their kids, making home visits, helping at the women's co-op, learning Swahili, and becoming familiar with Moshi and African culture.
For me the challenges were few, as Monika, the project leader is so supportive and does her utmost to make the volunteer experience a rewarding one. Getting used to watching my step all the time so I didn't twist my ankle in one of the many potholes on the Moshi streets was one and having to take a taxi after dark was perhaps another. Though the project does have a very reliable taxi driver!
There are periods when the water or electricity is turned off, but it's something you quickly get used to and learn to live with. Some of our best evening were spent chatting with the volunteers in candlelight.
The project is very well organized and targeted at people who really need support. All the Tanzanians who work at, or for GHTA, are past students. When students graduate some of them are offered a place in the Women's Co-op, whilst for others sponsorship is sought for continued education or business support. You really feel a part of an organization that is changing women's lives.
GHTA is a diamond among NGO's and I cannot recommend it highly enough.