Charlotte volunteered at Grace Primary School in Sinza, Dar Es Salaam, for 6 months and arrived in Summer 2016.
She is from Austria and at the time she had just graduated from secondary school.
1. Why did you choose to volunteer?
Becoming a volunteer was a great opportunity for me to live abroad for the first time and to see a country that is so different from Austria, where I am from.
1. What was your first impression when you arrived?
I was overwhelmed by how chaotic Dar Es Salaam was, but I immediately replaced this feeling with the excitement of being there.
2. What was your hosting situation like?
I was living with a host family near my project with another German volunteer who was also working with me.
3. What did your typical day look like?
On a normal day I would get up at around 6:30 a.m. and go to school by 7 a.m. to assist the local teachers with their classes.
At noon I fed the kids before eating my own lunch. In the afternoon, the children would take a nap and I would join them too.
I would return home with the school bus at around 4 p.m.; in the evenings I would spend time at home and sometimes I would go jogging with my host mum.
4. What were you up to when you were not volunteering?
During my free time, I enjoyed hanging out with the other volunteers and exploring all the beaches that are in and around Dar Es Salaam.
5. What was the most difficult thing about your experience?
The thing that I struggled with the most was definitely the cultural difference between my country and Tanzania. It was challenging to accept and embrace the different sets of values the people I met live by.
6. What was the best thing about your experience?
I loved having the possibility to experience a completely new world and to live in a place where I never thought I was going to live.
7. What did you learn or gain from your volunteer placement?
I learned so many things through my experience, such as how to be surrounded and look after small children, but more than anything, I learned to be less stressed.