Tales from the volunteers

My name is Jack Scholes, I am 19 years old from Huddersfield. I recently undertook a project with Everything is Possible in Aruba living independently and working on De Palm Island, a resort for tourists and locals, as a lifeguard. I spent four months in Aruba from the end of November 2019 until the end of March 2020.

Throughout my time working at De Palm Island I took on many different roles in the job. Our main duty as lifeguards is to ensure the safety of everybody on the island and help anybody in need in the event of an incident. As well as keeping everyone safe, we had to make sure people were comfortable, relaxed and having fun. This meant we had to operate the slides, hand out snorkelling equipment, guide snorkel tours, help on the banana boat and man the children’s waterpark, which often meant being involved in water fights! As well as those duties, we had to stay behind in the evenings in order to clean and prep the island ready for the next day, picking up litter and cleaning all the equipment daily.

Each day the island would accommodate anywhere between 200-600 guests which would mean we would have the opportunity to interact with people from all different countries and cultures from around the world. Being able to speak to this many people allowed me to develop my confidence, especially in a professional setting. When taking people out for snorkelling tours and helping them on the banana boat you would often have to explain something to large groups of people which is something I wasn’t comfortable doing before I did the project but that along with a lot of other things got easier the more I did them.

Besides working on De Palm Island, I also had free time outside of work every day and 2 full days off per week. This meant I had loads of time to go out with friends, visit beaches, snorkel, go off-roading and generally explore the island. We met so many people in Aruba, the locals were all extremely friendly and made it feel like home from the minute we landed at the airport. I enjoyed all the culture Aruba had to offer including history and culture events and carnival, which was being celebrated all over Aruba for most of the time that I was there. I also Tried all sorts of new food, from Columbian food to classic Arubian dishes like Keshi Yena.

I learnt a lot while I was in Aruba. Professionally, I gained more confidence in communicating with people and explaining things to them, even when trying to overcome a language barrier. I learnt how to get along with people from different backgrounds and cultures in a professional way while making a lot of good friends along the way. Working on De Palm Island has allowed me to realise that I can push myself further than I thought I could before. I was worried about working in a new place with lots of new people and nobody I knew around me but it has allowed me to overcome that and I think I will be more ready to take on new challenges in the future. It also taught me the importance of being ready for work, having uniform washed and ready for the next day, showing up to work on time and knowing what my schedule was each week, generally looking after myself. It has allowed me to gain a lot of independence.

 

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Project co-funded by the Erasmus+ programme of the European Union – The European Commission support for the production of this publication does not constitute an endorsement of the contents which reflects the views only of the authors, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.

My name is Marc Raw. I am from Huddersfield and I am 19 years old. Last year I took part in one of the projects in Aruba working on De Palm Island as an activity instructor/life guard for 3 months.

Throughout my VET project I took part in some professional activities and I also did some teaching of these activities to the customer. Some of the activities that I did were snorkelling and Snuba. Snorkelling involved me swimming above the water with my head in the water with a mask on so that I could breath. Snuba is where you are in the water with a mouth piece on, to breathe through tubes that were attached to a float and goggles. I also did sea trek which is where you wear a helmet and walk under water.

In my free time I visited many cultural places. One of the places was called Ayo Rock Formation which was an area in Aruba where it had lots of different types of rocks and boulders to climb and explore. Another place was the California Lighthouse which was based in the Noord. The lighthouse overlooked most of Aruba. There was also De Palm Island which was an activity Island. It had many activities on it and also some flamingos as well.

Whilst being in Aruba I learnt how to run all the activities on De Palm Island. These where: zip line, life guard tower, snorkelling booth, Water Park and air jump. This involved providing excellent customer care.

During my time on this project I learnt how to speak a different language which was Spanish/Papiamento. I also learnt how to live independently, by having to cook my own food, do the weekly shop, travel to places on my own and clean after myself. I was also able to learn how to go sea trekking and also snuba. I was also able to build up on my communication skills and also being to budget my money.

This project could help me in the future as it would open more doors for me applying for different types of jobs, improve on my skills that I already have and learn new skills. It has enhanced my CV greatly, and the whole experience was amazing.

 

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Project co-funded by the Erasmus+ programme of the European Union – The European Commission support for the production of this publication does not constitute an endorsement of the contents which reflects the views only of the authors, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.

Great interview from Liam about his Vocational Educational Training project in Aruba, coaching young people with Tur Cos Ta Posibel.
 

 

 

 

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Project co-funded by the Erasmus+ programme of the European Union – The European Commission support for the production of this publication does not constitute an endorsement of the contents which reflects the views only of the authors, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.

Here is another great interviez. Watch Cameron’s inspiring interview about his Vocational Educational Training project in Aruba, coaching young people with Tur Cos Ta Posibel.

 

 

 

CH Banner TCTP

Project co-funded by the Erasmus+ programme of the European Union – The European Commission support for the production of this publication does not constitute an endorsement of the contents which reflects the views only of the authors, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.

Watch Luke’s inspiring interview about his Vocational Educational Training project in Aruba, coaching young people.

 

 

 

CH Banner TCTP

Project co-funded by the Erasmus+ programme of the European Union – The European Commission support for the production of this publication does not constitute an endorsement of the contents which reflects the views only of the authors, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.

My name is Jake Douglass, I recently took part in a project with everything is possible which involved me flying to Aruba where I would work on a resort named De Palm Island.

There my job as a trainee was a lifeguard but I did much more. My training work always varied on a day to day basis as each day a schedule would be released and would give us the chance to go and work on all the different stations that the resort offered. This ranged from operating slides, to helping with equipment and also being able to personally take guests on snorkelling tours.

The work we did was amazing and I loved the time I had in Aruba. The programme was perfect for me as each day I would meet new people with new stories and new backgrounds which I could learn about through communicating and getting to know them. This was amazing for me as it allowed me to be even more sociable which is for me my best trait. It helped me to be able to learn to communicate even better and work on my skills with people one on one.

I can’t even put into words how this project made me felt each day when I went to work. It’s by far the best thing I’ve ever done and the best way experience of my life. It’s something with my background I never thought was possible and it makes me so proud to be able to say I was able to leave my area and get to travel and work in Aruba (which by the way is my favourite place in the world).

I haven’t ever been able to visit many places but I’ve always had this side of me that wants to travel and I think now this project has influenced what I want to do with my life. I now would like to travel the world or get into a profession which allows me to do so and I think this was a good stepping stone in helping me to do so with the experience it has given me. It’s also helped to find what my passion is and this is why it has influenced my decisions what I may make in the future.

Through being in Aruba I was able to realise that having new experiences with new people and seeing new things everyday is something I want to be able to do for the rest of my life. I don’t know how or what this exactly is right now but what I do know is the time spent in Aruba has been a very important time for me and has changed my life. My free time on the island was also amazing, often we would go out with friends and see different attractions around the island or sometimes just enjoy the insane weather and relax on the beach all day!I had so much fun when being able to just be free and explore this amazing place. Guess what this was two times every week also which was great.

Professionally also, I learnt how to present myself better and how to deal with all different types of people and personalities as each day we could be communicating and helping anywhere from 200-700 people. This was by far my favourite part of the job! The variety of people we would meet. All this was important for me but the best lesson was what I learnt personally.

Personally I learnt how to be more independent. This involved being in the house and sometimes having to clean the property. Also I learnt how to have to cope with feeding myself and washing etc. All of this sounds rather boring but is very important for later life and for now as it learns me to be able to rely on myself and this is by far one of the most comforting and nice feelings.

I think this project is going to help me for the future as i have said it has shaped my thoughts on what I would like to do when I am older and as a career. Nothing is certain yet but I know a role similar to what I did at de palm where I would meet new people is something I would love to do for the rest of my life.

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