NATALIE E. WILLENS (BERKELEY, CA, USA)

I came to Ghana on June 3rd, 2009 and volunteered with GCS for three weeks. I lived in a home stay in Akoefe with my host mother Aku, her niece Pearl, and Becca from Oklahoma. I taught English and Math in the primary school for the first week and then moved on to teaching computer classes. Because of the language/accent barrier, I think my efforts in the computer classes were much more effective as there was a visual medium to communicate through and the children’s interest and motivation were generally higher. I also worked at Ho farms, a farm and training center doing mushroom farming, rabbit feeding, and citrus tree planting. I feel that with specific projects such as the mural painting (which Becca and I initiated at the school) and the daily computer classes made possible by the computer room at Ho farms made my experience more meaningful to both me and the students.

AUSTIN JAMES FRAZER (IRVINE, CA, USA)

Having two weeks between the end of my summer job and the beginning of the Fall Quarter at the University of California-Irvine, I decided there could be no better utilization of my time than to volunteer abroad. Because i wanted to help where i thought my help would be appreciated most, I set my sights on Africa. After searching the internet and stumbling upon idealist.org, I followed the link to the Global-Cultural Solution (GCS). A few e-mails and a phone call later and i was registered to go.

MEGAN HARPER (BLACKFOOT, IDAHO, USA)

I traveled to Ghana, with my friend Megan Harper, January 12 to February 12, 2010. The experience and memories I had while I was in Africa will never be forgotten. It has always been my dream to travel to Africa and work in an orphanage. After discussing plans with Megan (my counterpart), we started researching different volunteer programs that were credible and reliable.

I still remember the phone call.

“So Mads, remember how we both said we wanted to go work in an orphanage someday?”

“Yeah,”

“Want to go in January?”

My Ghana experience didn’t start when I walked off the airplane, it started 6 months ago. The preparation, both physically and mentally, of leaving my life behind and completely immersing myself in another culture for a month is not a change that happens quickly or easily. But what an amazing and worthwhile change it is.

MADISON BRADSHAW (BREWSTER, WA, USA)

I traveled to Ghana, with my friend Megan Harper, January 12 to February 12, 2010. The experience and memories I had while I was in Africa will never be forgotten. It has always been my dream to travel to Africa and work in an orphanage. After discussing plans with Megan (my counterpart), we started researching different volunteer programs that were credible and reliable.

HARORLD BELALCAZAR (SPAIN/COLUMBIA)

In October of 2009 I had a decent job in a respectable company, living in a great city, enjoying my friends and having an overall good time, but I was feeling a need to contribute to society, to the community, a need to start giving something back to those who are “less fortunate”. I needed to do something that was both rewarding for others and interesting and fun for me, so I started thinking about something that I was good at and, something that I could teach or share with others.

Football was the easy answer (I’m passionate about it) given that I have been a footballer since I can remember and I’ve played at a very competitive level in different places.My next step was to find a place to volunteer and share my experience, so I did research on Internet about football volunteering programs and I found, through a very well designed website, Global Cultural Solution which offered the exact program I was looking for: local placement in an African community (Ghana), and the chance to work with boys that were between 10 and 21 years old. I put my “previous” life on standby and took off to Ghana on March 1st 2010 in search of an incredible journey and experience.

SAMANTHA STURM (PEORIA, ILLINOIS, USA)

My venture started in the United States of America where I decided to take action and collaborate with a dedicated organization to help improve impoverished communities in need. However, I was not expecting to find and come in contact with individuals who obtain such a burning passion to help assist others as GCS’s members do. Through my stay in Ghana and chance to work with such dedicated individuals I have opened my heart and mind to the endless opportunities that exist to help the underprivileged.

EVELYN STIENLET (HERVELEE, BELGIUM)

As soon as I decided to work as a volunteer in West Africa, I started browsing on the net. I found a few organizations in Ghana where I could volunteer in a social/educational project. Finally, it was a link to GCS website is what made me to choose for them and not for other organization; “why should you choose us?” was the link. After a few practical questions about the program, the fee and the period…I decided to go for it. Three weeks wasn’t long but I’m sure this is just an occasion to taste of Ghana and its culture.

JACOB OLSON (EAU, CLAIRE, WISCONSIN, USA)

After graduating in December of 2008 from the University of Wisconsin Eau Claire, I felt called to volunteer. I realized the opportunity was ripe; I had a small amount of free time before a prospective career, a little extra money, and a desire to help. Africa had been in my thoughts for only a short amount of time but never a serious consideration.

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GCS - bridging the gap between the priviledged and underpriviledged

We impact society through volunteerism

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