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GAP YEAR | VOLUNTEER ABROAD | WORK EXPERIENCE OVERSEAS

 
Care, Orphanage and Community Development Projects   

HOW YOU MAKE A DIFFERENCE BY VOLUNTEERING ABROAD

TOGETHER, TRAVELLERS AND OUR VOLUNTEERS MAKE A DIFFERENCE! We make regular donations of money, equipment and other types of aid to underprivileged communities, children and animals, even though Travellers is not a charity.

Some institutions don't need financial assistance because they're relatively wealthy, but most of them need as much help as they can get, which is why some countries appear to benefit disproportionately from our help, directly or indirectly, many poor communities are better off because ... you've chosen to do a voluntary placement.

You may not see all the effects of your work while you're on your placement, but we've listed below a few examples of the aid which some of the poorer communities and people have received from Travellers as a direct result of YOUR voluntary work.

We also make donations into The Bridge The Gap Foundation (The Phil & Jennifer Perkes Memorial Trust) (see below).


HOW YOU MAKE A DIFFERENCE:

It's not always obvious to see all the material and financial benefits of your placement to the community directly, but Travellers could not make these very much needed donations without you.

Some of the donations have an obvious and very dramatic effect - like the new classrooms we've built in two poor schools that have enabled more children to receive an education (which they hadn't previously been getting), or the playground we built (the first safe area for the community children to play in) - but other, smaller and "unsung" donations have been equally beneficial to the community.
Here are just some examples of the very many donations we've been able to make;

Teaching:

  • We continue to pay for the education for 5 children in Zambia.
  • We funded the renovation of the accommodation building in the Wildlife Rehabilitation Center in South Africa
  • Travellers paid for and built a new classroom for a school in Sri Lanka, enabling an additional 100 children to receive an education. 
  • In several countries we have paid for the purchase of school uniforms and shoes for underprivileged children.
  • We donated computers to a school in Ghana, provided a TV and DVD player to a poor school in South Africa and are also equipping a library for a poor school.
  • We sponsor school sports events and provide sports equipment and trophies, particularly in Kenya, India, and Sri Lanka.
  • A much-needed, fully-equipped playground area in a poor school was funded and constructed by Travellers (see picture, right, of children enjoying their new playground!).
  • Travellers give money to poor schools in South Africa which is used for vital equipment and in some cases, to pay for additional teachers.
  • We bought toys for the Red Cross Children's Hospital in South Africa and a home for children in Argentina. 
  • In India we paid for a new Public Address system in one of the schools where we work.
  • In Kenya, Mattresses were purchased  for a local orphanage we work with in Mombasa
  • We have also; painted schools and classrooms and paid for new school signs to give the children a sense of pride in their school; provided classroom necessities, like desks, chairs, blackboards, chalks, etc; Supplied books, pens, textbooks and lots of other educational aids to children in numerous schools in many countries.
  • In Sri Lanka we are part funding the cost of a new library for a small village near our teaching project in Wasgamuwa. 
Conservation:
  • Travellers donates money to various Nature Reserves and animal sanctuaries so that research projects that would stop due to lack of funds can continue. For example, in Kenya we assist with transport/petrol expenses so that Patrol Vehicles can continue to operate.
  • In South Africa, we have donated enough money to purchase necessary equipment such as monitoring collars for elephants, lions and other game animals.
  • In South Africa we funded the continuation of the species survival project which would have otherwise stopped.
  • In Malaysia, Travellers also donated £5,140.00 from the Bridge The Gap Foundation (The Phil Perkes Trust) to sponsor the Children’s Zoo. The Children’s Zoo is first and foremost an educational facility with an information center currently under construction that will boast live exhibits. Brightly painted murals engage attention and the petting zoo allows children to have hands on contact with domestic animals and wildlife to encourage learning about conservation. In the petting area there are Rabbits, Tortoise, Miniature Ponies and Goats. Travellers' donation reflects their commitment in education and raising awareness about conservation.
  • 2010 saw the start of a Conservation Awareness program at Lok Kawi, funded by Travellers and involving over 1000 local school children in its' first year. Through this awareness program we aim to teach the importance of nature and wildlife conservation for younger generations through exposure to Borneo's native wildlife. With the support of the Sabah Wildlife Department, two educational visits will be organised each month, for primary and secondary school children in the east coast area of Sabah. It is hoped that this program will promote the work of Lok Kawi Wildlife Park and support it as a renowned learning center for nature and wildlife conservation in the future.
  • In Sri Lanka we sponsored the director of Colombo Zoo to attend a conference on animal enrichment in the UK, covering all of his expenses to enable to learn the latest enrichment/stimulation techniques to be applied in Sri Lanka.
  • We built an educational amphitheatre in the Crocodile Center in South Africa
Miscellaneous:
  • On request, Travellers provided a religious statue to give the children a place to pray and derive spiritual comfort.
  • A donation of £2,500 was sent to Sri Lanka immediately after the Tsunami hit to help with aid relief. Volunteers were involved in preparing and distributing aid packages, and more money has subsequently been donated.
  • A donation was made to assist children from a school in Zambia, (soon to become a new destination for Travellers) to take a school trip to South Africa. Many of these children had never left their own village!
  • And Travellers does much, much more on an on-going basis - and we'll continue to do so in the future. It makes a tremendous difference.
DONATIONS:
If you would like to make a donation to any one of our projects, perhaps one that is close to your heart, you can do so online by going to http://www.travellersvolunteers.co.uk/donate.php. You can choose how much you'd like to donate (from as little as £1) and you can choose exactly which project you'd like it to go to. We will liaise with you in case there are specific items that you'd like us to buy for the project with your donation money.

All donations are very welcome and extremely important to those who have a lot less than us!


One of the schools in South Africa that Travellers supports with volunteers, donations, equipment and teaching aids.


Computer Donation at St Matthews Summer Camp, Ghana


The mural painted by Travellers Volunteers in South Africa


Dedication ceremony at the opening of the new classroom

THE BRIDGE THE GAP FOUNDATION - THE PHIL AND JENNIFER PERKES MEMORIAL TRUST

Phil Perkes with his favourite animal, the white rhino

“Phil, we salute you!  Siyabonga Kakhulu – your spirit will walk with the Ndlovu and we will place a branch from the buffalo thorn at your favourite lookout spot.”

Samantha Terblanche, on behalf of the Wildlands Trust Conservation Foundation, South Africa.

Travellers Founder and Managing Director, Phil Perkes, sadly and very unexpectedly passed away in August 2004. Phil had spent many years in Africa and his fondest memories were of the times he spent in Game Reserves watching his favourite 'soul-mate', the White Rhino. Phil also spent a lot of time setting up projects for Travellers that help disadvantaged children in poverty-rife communities and his work has resulted in many children having life opportunities that would not have been possible without Travellers.

The Bridge The Gap Foundation (the Phil & Jennifer Perkes Memorial Trust)  was set up by Jennifer, his wife and Travellers Director, in memory of Phil's achievements in improving disadvantaged communities and his incredible contribution to conservation (and his love of the White Rhino!). The Trust funds research and reintroduction programmes for threatened animals, expansion and education programmes relating to conservation and endangered species, as well as to pay for education and necessary equipment for poor but very deserving children.

The Bridge The Gap Foundation was so named because its aim is to try to bridge the gap between the have's and the have-nots. Travellers make a donation to the Trust for every single volunteer who participates on a voluntary project, regardless of project or country they choose to do.

Very importantly - EVERY PENNY IN THE TRUST FUNDS GOES DIRECTLY TO THE PROJECTS. No salaries are taken from the Fund.

Some of the funds from the Trust were used to support projects that were close to Phil’s heart, such as the Endangered Species project in St Lucia Wetlands World Heritage Park, South Africa. This vital conservation project (now completed) focused on the study and survival of endangered species, but the project itself is now endangered due to a lack of funds. The Phil Perkes Trust is financially supporting the project, including subsidising the cost of voluntary placements to encourage more volunteers and contributing towards salaries so that this vital research can continue.

A life-sized bronze statue of an adult white rhinoceros bull has been erected by the KZN Conservation Trust and Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife at the International Convention Center in Durban.  The sculpture was created by world-famous artist, Dylan Lewis, and will symbolise and celebrate more than a century of conservation in KwaZulu-Natal and honour all those who have contributed to its success.  A plaque in memory of Phil and his contribution to conservation in South Africa is there, together with others, on the statue.

The Trust also pays the school fees for some Ghanaian children. Children in Ghana have to pay for their schooling and those who can't afford it just can't attend. By paying for the children's schooling, the Trust ensures these children get an education and a decent chance in life. 

Should you wish to make a donation to the Trust, please click here or contact us for details:
The Bridge The Gap Foundation
Travellers Worldwide, 7 Mulberry Close, Ferring, West Sussex, BN12 5HY.
Tel: +44 (0) 1903 502 595 Fax: +44(0) 1903 500 364

SOME CASE STUDIES




Zambia: Supporting a local community school
Donations are made yearly to Travellers support school in Lusaka, Zambia. The school targets orphans, from those who have lost one parent to those who have lost both parents. These children are unable to meet the financial demands of schooling and can therefore not enroll in either government or private schools. This is where CECUP community school comes in. The school is a self-help school regally registered with the Zambian Ministry of Education as a service school.

It is run by local volunteers who offer their time to give these children a chance to learn. The school started with 32 children and now has 256 girls and 226 boys making a total of 482 children. The official name of the school is JACK CECUP COMMUNITY SCHOOL and the acronym CECUP stands for

  • C = Community

  • E = Educational

  • C = Center for the

  • U = Under

  • P = Privileged

The children in the school range from six to 16 years of age and consist of the following groups:

  • NEVER BEENS: These are children who have had no chance to be in a Government School and are the age where they can not be accepted.

  • DROP OUTS: these are children who failed to proceed to junior secondary or any other grade, due to a number of factors such as lack of school uniform, shoes, books, pencils, etc.

  • PULL OUTS: These children were once in Government or Private schools and where forced out due to the loss of the main breadwinner or parent who used to sponsor them.

The school is very poor but give the the children porridge daily and family rations once a month, as well as organizing new or second hand clothes and shoes for children, books, and pencils for example. To support the school further Travellers donate money for school term fees and for new shoes for the children. Further, donations were made to assist children to be taken on a school trip to South Africa, where many of these children had never left their own village! Also, Travellers have supported fun days where food and drink have been provided for the children. The school appreciate the help so much that they have sent a thank you video.

PROFILE : YONG MTONGA : One of the children we help at KACL

FULL NAME: Yona Mtonga / SEX: Male

'My name is Yona Mtonga. I am a teenager an aged 16 years, eleven months and 9 months born on the 27th August 1998. I will turn 17 soon as I reach the actual month on 27th, 2005. I am a male person by sex, born in Lundazi District of Zambia and Mulanje Village to be specifically, Chief Mphamba.

In my family, we are seven and, of the seven, four boys and three girls. Am the fourth born and proud about my family. I started my primary grade one in 1996 at Kapiri Middle Basic in Lundazi District to grade three. I tell you nothing but the truth.

My mom dead in the village and my father dead when I was very, very small. My uncle decided to transfer to come to Lusaka to live with my uncle and continue with my education. When I reached Lusaka. Months passed without going to school. It was from there that I met Mr. Wiseman Banda of Jack CECUP Community School in 1999 and he encouraged me to start school. Quickly without time wasting I started my education in grade three. I am rally proud because Jack CECUP Community School has taught me a lot and I always enjoy. I think of it day and night.

I did my last grade at Jack CECUP Community School in 2002 where I was selected to go to secondary School in grade eight at Chimwemwe Basic School in 2003. I also did my grade nine there in 2004.

I sat for my Junior Secondary School Leaving Examinations and I was with no doubt selected to go grade ten at Kamwala high secondary school. But this did not work out due to lack of financial assistance. Since schools opened I did not report for school.

This made me one of the saddest moments in my life. I am someone friendly and easy to talk to. I like playing football and reading novels, though I do not know a lot about novels. I also like listening to Zambian music and slow music.

My aim in life is to work hard when it comes to education and achieve a better future. In like the bible what it says that work hard to get sweet. Education is the key to success but one cannot because there are certain challenges that can stop you from completing one’s education. As for me Yona, I say money is my challenge'.

Thailand: Here at Travellers we like making friends!
 

Especially with like minded people who are doing wonderful things around the world. One such friend is The Abraham Foundation http://abrahamfoundation.org/cms/ - an inspiring organisation based in New York. Their aim is to discover, develop and support grass root conservation initiatives.  They have successfully been doing so for years! This organisation assists small and worthwhile conservation projects around the world in getting their feet off the ground. This assistance includes helping form supportive alliances between grass root organisations and useful partners enabling them to carry on with their crucial work.

We’ve been friends with the Abraham Foundation for years and are delighted to have been introduced by them to the fantastic Surin Elephant Project in Thailand. Travellers Worldwide now works in partnership with this project sending a weekly donation, as well as YOU invaluable volunteers.  Please see below for details of how our donations are helping the elephants directly  on the ground…

“Dear [Travellers team],  I hope all is well. Here in New York it is hot like Thailand! I will keep this email very short. I simply wanted to send you a picture of Mem and Imboon bathing in the enclosure which is now complete. Alex says they are all enjoying the enclosure tremendously. As you can imagine, the enclosure has meant a tremendous improvement of their lives. Because you are largely responsible for the construction of this enclosure, I thought you would like to see the fruits of your labor.

As always with gratitude, Abraham Foundation”

Argentina: Travellers supports a local children's home
Each month we contribute financially to a Home in Buenos Aires to support children whose parents are infected with HIV or whose parents have died from HIV. The Home is very poor as it does not receive any money from the government. Many of the resident children do not even have papers, so officially they “don’t exist”. The home is supported solely by donations and also receives help from people in the local neighbourhood who donate their old newspapers to the Home for the pennies they get from selling them for recycling.

Travellers' financial donation each month has meant that the Home could afford to buy ...

  • extra food for the children every month

  • an additional two sets of bunk beds to enable 4 more children to be admitted to the home,

  • blankets for all of the children’s beds,
  • new wardrobes in several of the rooms and
  • some 'luxury' items like toys and books
  • a ventilation system to provide better circulation of air in the summer months.


Mike and Andy at Arundel Fun Run


Children at the APMI crèche in Brazil, where Mike's sponsorship money is going.

Travellers Staff raise money by taking part in Charity Fun Run!

Well, what conscientious and motivated staff we have!! On a sunny Sunday morning in late August Mike Ecclestone, Travellers’ Manager and Andy Kemp, our Ghana Coordinator (amongst other roles!) didn’t spend the morning in bed, eating a fry up and watching T4, oh no. For these two it was an early rise and journey to Arundel where a 10K sponsored run for charity was taking place. Accompanied for support by Roshan, our visiting Sri Lankan Manager, the boys donned their trainers and Travellers t-shirts, stretched and warmed up and ran alongside a myriad of competitors through the cobbled streets and around the glorious Cathedral of this quaint city.

Coming in at impressive times of 53:20 and 59:19, our boys secured loads of money from kind friends and unlucky passer-bys who had agreed to sponsor them. Not to mention Travellers’ Director, Jennifer’s personal donation who offered generously to match whatever the boys raised.

Andrew arranged for the money he raised to go directly towards sponsoring many different children in Ghana to attend school for one year. Can you believe that it is only £5 to cover the expenses of a child’s school fees per year in Ghana? By being so active already in the local schools and community of Accra, it means that Travellers is able to ensure that every penny is spent directly where it is needed to achieve maximum benefit for the local children. Nothing gets lost in admin or transportation.

Mike donated his sponsorship money to the equally worthwhile cause of saving the community crèche from closedown in a small rural village in Brazil. The crèche in Foz do Iguaçu is being told that it must close if it doesn’t start raising the necessary funds to help renovate the building. The crèche is an amazing place and something that Foz and the community really needs to hang on to.

If anyone would like to donate anything towards these causes (even £1 goes a long way) please contact us with your cc details at info@travelersworldwide.org or call 01903 502 595 and we promise that your money will go directly and in full to the place where it can make the difference to a life.

Sri Lanka: Working with the local community

 


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Our office and much of our work in Sri Lanka is based in Ja-Ela, a small town situated very near the coast.The schools are for the poorer children and underprivileged section of the community. Here, amongst other things, Travellers provides many of the poorer children with school uniforms, shoes, books and various other tools to aid their studies. Our long-term goal is to ensure that all the poorer children are equipped in this way.

We also have on-going projects in the schools and local community:

  • We've recently completed building a fully-equipped playground area in one of the schools where we work. There are no (or very few) playgrounds generally available for children to play in safely and we hope to provide the same facilities in other poor schools until, in time, all the schools have a well- equipped play area for the children to play in.

  • Travellers has also contributed a new classroom to one of the schools, enabling an additional 60-100 children to receive an education - we're really proud of this contribution to the community!

  • We have recently provided a religious statue (see below) to St Joseph's school so that the children have something to pray to and derive spiritual comfort from.  

  • A former volunteer and Project Co-ordinator at Travellers, Fergus Kane, was instrumental in the set-up of a computer center by Three Oaks Trust with the help of Travellers. There are now many computers in the center and our volunteers also contribute by regularly teaching there.

A Day at Pinawala for 500 Children in Colombo

The Director of Colombo Zoo and Pinawala Elephant Orphanage arranged an educational and fun day trip for 500 pupils from Sri Lanka’s capital city, Colombo, to visit the Pinawala Elephant Orphanage for the day! Here children learnt about the importance of conservation and looking after Sri Lanka's elephants.

Travellers sponsored the day and provided breakfast and mid-morning milk and cookies for the 500 pupils at the event.

All Traveller’s volunteers participated in the event and handed out the food on the day to the children. They helped to provide an informative and enjoyable day out for the kids.

The Dedication of the Statue of St Joseph at the St Joseph's school in Ja-Ela
When Travellers asked St. Joseph School what they needed most that we could provide for them, they told us that for years the children hadn't had a statue to pray to and that they found this very distressing.

Travellers immediately commissioned a local stonemason to sculpt a beautiful statue and an equally impressive pedestal which raises the statue high to allow all the children to see it during prayers.The statue was dedicated during a lovely ceremony which was attended by some of the volunteers, with lots of photos being taken.

Travellers is thrilled and honoured to be involved with this community and hope that in time we'll make a difference to the future lives of ALL the children.

These are just a few of the on-going projects we are currently developing in Sri Lanka - we have many others in other countries as well, and we will be adding more new projects over time.

Most importantly, though, the extra teaching that OUR VOLUNTEERS provide ensures that
the children have added opportunities in the future
!