If you want to go abroad, to look at the new country and thus most closely acquainted to become with its culture and local population, having spent a minimum of money, I advise to pay attention to the volunteer programs abroad offered now in a large number.
Volunteer programs represent a cultural exchange with representatives of other nationalities. Assume performance of any small work by you (depends on a type of the program, usually it is restoration or construction works, care of children, animal, work in a kitchen garden − gathering berries, fruit, weeding, landing of plants etc.), and in exchange employers provide you with housing, food and excursions over the country. Such programs are carried out in the different countries, cost their purely symbolical.
Thus it is few restrictions on age (usually to participants from 18 to 35 years, but there are programs and for more advanced ages, and even for pensioners)! Programs break on age groups that all participants were about one age.
By InfoAdvisor.net I recommend to choose the program to readers beforehand, for example, if you are going to go in the summer, it is necessary to begin selection at the end of winter − the beginning of spring. It is better to be prepared in advance to get to the program which was pleasant to you as the number of people in everyone is not so great − from 5 to 40.
My experience of participation in the program
I would like to share with you the personal experience − three unforgettable weeks spent in Germany.
Germany − the remarkable country with rich culture and very hospitable and friendly people, always ready to help.
The program in which I participated, meant residence and work in the village of Ditts. At first it confused a little, appear, that not in the city, but from the first day my doubts vanished, and subsequently I did not regret about the choice at all.
The choice fell on this program because of number of days as there was a wish to stay in Germany as it is possible more long. Usually volunteer programs last of 1 week to the 3rd. You can find versions of programs in the Internet, there is a lot of sites with similar offers.
Now about everything one after another...
Housing and work
The plane flied to Berlin, further to the city of Tserbsta, next to Dittsu, in which I was met by our curator − the indigenous German, − it was necessary to reach most by an electric train.
Ditts appeared a lovely and well-groomed small village with the population in 800 people. By the way, villages in Germany have nothing in common with the Russian villages. They represent more likely country cottage settlements where Germans go to live from city bustle, with the paths paved by a stone blocks, with greens and flowers growing everywhere. The house which sheltered us for 3 weeks, was very cozy and included two big rooms, kitchen and a bathroom equipped with all necessary.
Our amicable team consisted of 13 people (including the curator) different nationalities − guys and girls from France, Italy, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Finland, Morocco, South Korea, China and Belgium. Age − from 17 to 25 years.
Indispensable condition of the program − knowledge of English. I do not mean perfect English, but ability to understand and though it is obligatory to speak a little! By the way, participation in the volunteer program − excellent chance "to tighten" the English as it is simply impossible to be silent 3 weeks. But I want to specify that readers Mirsovetov were not frightened − to understand English of people, not being its carriers, it is much easier, than, for example, to try to talk to British or Americans. For participants of the program English − the same foreign language, as well as for you therefore they speak slowly and accurately, pronouncing all sounds.
The employer appeared the large farmer who was engaged in animal husbandry (horses, sheep, hens, rabbits) and cultivation of various crops − berries, vegetables, fruit.
Respectively, and our work consisted in landing of plants, weeding, gathering berries, care of animals, etc. Work simple and time did not take away much: 4 days a week, for 6 hours a day with a lunch break. That is 3 days were completely free, and we devoted them to excursions. But about it a bit later.
Personally I generally gathered strawberry, and in general every day gave new tasks. Germans − people punctual, loving accuracy. And it too belongs to work. Therefore the main task was in to being late in the mornings and after a lunch. And here it is not necessary to hurry at work. "you will quicker make the principle – you will quicker be released" did not work. Even if the volume of work was executed, had patiently to wait for the termination of working hours. The main thing that you were occupied with something, and here how many you managed to make − not so important, nobody will abuse.
The refrigerator was filled with different delicacies the curator daily. It is not surprising that all participants recovered on some kilograms.
Every day according to the established schedule two persons cooked food for all others. But not simply I go, and the national food! Thus were exempted from the main work of "cook". Thus, every day we tried dishes of different kitchen − Chinese, Italian, Russian etc. Here real "stomach holiday"!
The day before the menu which was agreed with the curator as she needed to buy products for preparation was formed. The budget of dishes was almost not limited. Prepare everything that you will wish.
If the breakfast and a lunch passed quickly as we hurried for work, the dinner stretched till late evening.
After a dinner a sit-round gathering was tightened to the dream. It would seem, what it is possible to do in the village? But boringly it was not absolute to anybody! We or played cards and other board games, explaining each other rules, or went on the lake which was directly behind the house, or rode bicycles to the neighboring towns, or gave thematic parties at a fire with songs to the guitar, with a fried zephyr, the baked potato and, of course, local most tasty beer.
And the days off were filled with excursions... In 3 weeks we managed to visit Berlin, Leipzig, Wittenberg, Vyorlitsa, Tserbsta.
Believe, all these cities are worth it that to look at them!
− the capital of Germany − strikes Berlin with the severity and power, a little gloomy, but majestic. Very much the Reichstag building (a place of meetings of the government), the Triumphal arch, Chekpoynt Charlie (the border check-point which divided Berlin during Cold war) impressed.
Leipzig − the biggest city in Saxony, strongly injured during war therefore its many buildings are modern. It was glorified by such famous composers and musicians as Goethe, Bach, Mendelssohn, Wagner. It is also well-known for the ancient churches − Saint Foma and Saint Nikolay.
Wittenberg − the small, cozy city with nice small streets, known for the most beautiful cathedral in which Martin Luther King, and university of his name is buried.
In the city of Vyorlits there is one of the most known park complexes with numerous locks and constructions − Dessau-Vyorlits. It is possible to walk in the park some days, so it huge and interesting.
Tserbst − very small town which main sight is the lock in which there lived until departure to Russia the princess Anhalt-Zerbst who became subsequently the great Russian empress Catherine II. Unfortunately, during war the lock very strongly suffered, but its restoration is conducted. In Tserbsta also there is Catherine II's museum which is also interesting to visit.
Besides, almost in all these cities it is possible to please itself with pleasant shopping. Generally, I received the sea of emotions and impressions.
So, having taken part in this volunteer program, I not only looked at other country, got acquainted with its culture and customs, popraktikovat English, but also got remarkable friends with whom I communicate still.
Therefore very much I recommend also to you to gain similar experience of travel which will remember then all life.