Skip to main content

At Home Volunteering in South Africa

Resource: At Home Volunteering in South Africa

Volunteers’ Week, 1-7 June, is a time for Project Trust to thank people from across the Project Trust Family for the contribution you make through volunteering.  

As part of this, Project Trust is sharing a number of stories from, and about, our own Volunteers. Join in and help recognise the fantastic contribution volunteers make, including Katie Wright…  

I volunteered with Project Trust as a teaching assistant to primary school children in Zithulele, South Africa in 2019/20.  

I taught English, Maths, Music, PE and assisted with other activities. I also taught a dance class to children in my spare time, home-schooled children in the community, helped out at after school club, and ran holiday school camp. It was a full-on year and I wouldn’t change it for the world!

I chose international volunteering with Project Trust because I knew university was a route I wanted to take but, towards the end of college, felt I needed a break from education. When I saw the opportunities Project Trust make available, I jumped at the chance to apply. I wanted a structured gap year and to positively contribute towards another community. And I did that, and more, developing vital life skills and friends for life too! 

I was eligible to apply for the Project Trust Access Fund bursary programme, which made a huge difference to me achieving my fundraising target, relieving some financial pressure. Above all, it provided me with the confidence and belief that my circumstances would not prevent me from achieving an experience of lifetime, one now shaping the beginnings of my future. 

New perspectives 

Since my placement ended, I can really reflect on how much broader my world view is and the new-found understanding of a culture different from my own. This lived experience has led me to appreciate the individual values and views that each person can contribute towards society. It has allowed me to become more engaged with pressing social justice issues amongst communities across the world and become an active global citizen. 

That’s the same for my career prospects too. I am currently studying Adult Nursing at The University of Manchester, which I absolutely love. It allows me to continue to make a valuable impact on the lives of others, just as I did as a Volunteer with Project Trust. 

This decision was partly inspired by shadowing nurses, doctors and watching a c-section in rural Zithulele Hospital. My Project Trust experience has fuelled my enthusiasm to work internationally in a rural community like the one in which I volunteered in South Africa. 

A Home in My Heart  

Most Volunteers will agree, it’s not until you have completed your placement that you realise the skills and friendships you’ve gained and growth you’ve experienced. Zithulele was a place that not just became a new home for me, but one that also found a home in my heart. 

I would 100% recommend Project Trust to those of you who are thinking of applying, or who know young people looking to make a difference through the types of life- and career-enhancing experiences Project Trust offers.  

Project Trust is more than a gap year. It’s a journey and community you belong to for life.  

Find out more  

The benefits of volunteering with Project Trust

Apply to volunteer with Project Trust in 2022

The Lasting Impact of Volunteering – Chris Millar, South Africa 2007/08

Call Back Request – ask us to call you at a time that best suits

Share your Project Trust volunteering story

Go Back