I knew I wanted to volunteer in South or Central America, and I narrowed my search to 3 programs in Bolivia, Peru, and Argentina. The reason I chose Sustainable Bolivia was primarily because the price was right and because Erik answered all of my questions quickly and helped alleviate my stress about moving to another country. I am so glad I chose Sustainable Bolivia for many reasons. For one, they were able to accommodate my boyfriend, who spoke no Spanish before arriving. Secondly, they matched me with an organization according to my specific interests.
I worked with the Bolivian NGO Anyisuyu, whose director had prepared a task for me to complete. I got to experience what it would be like working for an NGO in another country, and I had the chance to see the surrounding countryside when I visited the area for work-related jobs. I had the full support of my coworkers if I had any questions. My job at Aynisuyu was to write a comprehensive report to evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of one of their programs for children in the area. I did research at the office, but I also interviewed participants in the program, from children to teachers to doctors to district directors of education. I learned a lot, not just about Bolivia, but valuable skills I hope to apply back home.
Furthermore, Cochabamba is a very livable city that was a nice place to come back to after traveling around the country. Living in a house with other volunteers also made us feel a sense of community when we began to miss our homes. The neighborhood was comfortable, and pretty much anywhere in the city was walkable from the volunteer house. We will also never forget the friends we made, and plan to keep in contact with them for a long time. I am glad I chose Sustainable Bolivia, and would recommend it to anyone interested in volunteering abroad.