Our Sales & Marketing Intern Tavish McGreevy talks about his time volunteering with La Choza Chula as part of the Carpe Diem “Latitudes” programme.
Why did you choose to travel with Carpe Diem to Central America?
The decision to travel with Carpe Diem was a no-brainer for me. I did not want to go to college immediately after high school and Carpe Diem provided an option that was both educational and allowed me to travel. I knew for my group semester I wanted to go to a Spanish speaking country, which left me with Central America or South America. What made me want to go to Central America was that it gave me the opportunity to travel to 4 different countries, and the South American trip travelled to only 2. I’m really happy with my decision because each Central American country is so different culturally.
What were your personal goals or motivations for your trip?
My #1 Goal for my trip was to improve my Spanish. Carpe Diem ensured that I would learn lots of the language, as we spent a month in total in a Spanish school. However I learned the best way to learn Spanish is to put yourself in situations that force you to speak Spanish, although it can be awkward and embarrassing at times it’s a valuable opportunity to learn the language.
Another goal of mine was to learn how to travel safely, respectfully and responsibly. Carpe Diem makes sure to emphasise the importance of all three of these skills. Lastly I was curious and excited to go to new places in the world. Carpe Diem was a perfect resource for me to do so. I’m very lucky and grateful for the experiences, stories and memories that I’ve had with Carpe Diem Education.
What were your first impressions of La Choza Chula? Why did you want to come back to us?
I was immediately impressed by La Choza Chula, The staff are dedicated, knowledgeable and believe in the projects they are involved in. I visited El Paredon on my group semester, and it stuck out compared to all the other places we visited. I’m currently participating in my Latitudes Semester with Carpe Diem. Latitudes is a program that gives students the opportunity to partner with an organization and intern for them.
For me La Choza Chula was the perfect fit. So when I found out I could come back to El Paredon it was an easy decision. I also wanted to be partnered with an organisation that would keep me busy, but ensure I would have time to focus on activities outside of work.Learning to surf has taken up most of my free time and has given me a great activity when I’m not at work. Overall a combination of the organisation, community and surf brought me back to La Choza Chula.
How is your Carpe Diem Latitudes experience with La Choza Chula going to help you in the future? What are you currently getting out of it both personally and professionally?
Since working with La Choza Chula I have been learning lots about sustainability and how to leave a positive impact in a community. Seeing how much time it takes to make things happen in a small Guatemalan community, really speaks volumes as to how much the La Choza Chula staff has been able to accomplish. Moving forward I hope to take what I have learned from the La Choza Chula staff into my college career and beyond. This is my first experience working behind a desk, and time management and organisation is something I have been trying to prioritise as areas of improvement. Outside of the workplace, learning how to network with people and make friends outside of a school setting has been a different experience.