In June 2022, Grainne Malone and I were the first volunteers with VLM in Songea in the south of Tanzania. Tanzania was a lovely country, and the people were very friendly. I felt very safe and was made very welcome during my whole time there. The Vincentian Fathers and Sisters of Charity of St Vincent de Paul were very accommodating and went out of their way to make me feel welcome. A common dish was Ugali, completely flavourless but they love it!
During my time in Tanzania, I was lucky enough to work in two school settings. The De Paul School offered an education from play school all the way up to secondary school. While there I was given the opportunity to teach an English exam year a week before their mocks as well as history classes. The second part of my placement was at the Songea Deaf School. This was unlike anything I’ve ever had to do. Their sign language varied from Irish sign language a bit but it was an experience learning it and taking classes, some of which I was left on my own for. Subjects I taught ranged from English, Maths, History and writing classes. We took a trip to Lake Nyasa which was a lovely experience and it was great to visit another De Paul school along the way. My experiences in Tanzania opened my eyes to many issues (we complain about our favourite bread brand going up in price) that were alien to me and have made me so much more aware of global problems and the role that we can all play to assist in combating them. I would like to thank all those for making Tanzania happen and I look forward to my future volunteering experiences with VLM.