15 feb. 2009

What our volunteers say: Meredith

Yes, I was in Chacha during the summer of 2007 I believe. It was such a wonderful experience! However, I was there primarily as a missionary working with one of the local churches and just volunteered at the ILC, so my experience and perspective were probably a bit
different than yours will be.

What I can tell you about Chachapoyas is that the people there are some of the sweetest, kindest people you will ever meet. They would absolutely love you and be so eager to learn from you! The ILC would be a great place to work! Vanessa and Fidel are awesome people, as well as the others that teach there. Spending time there would definitely be a cultural experience and would greatly help your Spanish skills.

Like I said, I was just a volunteer at the ILC. All I did was have conversations with the more advanced students as a native speaker.
I'm from the south, and Vanessa liked the students to experience a different dialect (since the students learn British English there). I am also an education major, so teaching comes natural to me. But if you are a native speaker of English, you will have no trouble teaching students how to speak it. As far as I know the ILC has curriculum and materials for you to use, and the staff can give you ideas on how to teach.

Chachapoyas is very rural compared to Lima, but not near as rural as other places I have been in Peru or other parts of the world. There is an internet cafe, a few restaurants and shops, and some travel guide places. It might get pretty dull during the week, but there are several places to go see during your stay in chacha. There are famous inca ruins nearby, one of the larger waterfalls in the world. Most of these places to see involve trekking. I only stayed there for a
couple of months. It might be hard to stay there for a longer period of time, but i'm sure there will be opportunities to get out and travel. When I went, the only way to get to chachapoyas was a 20 hour bus ride from lima. I know they have an airport in chachapoyas, but it was not open when i was there.

Overall I would say GO to Peru. It will be a great experience!! If you have any other questions please feel free to ask!!!!!

Meredith, 18, Charlston, USA

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