Volunteering in Ghana
After I finished my Bachelor degree, I had 6 months time before I would continue with my Master studies. Very soon, I decided to go abroad for several months. Since my decision was very spontaneous and there was little time for organization, I decided to plan my trip with the help of an agency.
After the first contacting everything went very fast and soon I would go to Ghana for 3 months and work in a hospital.
Visa, flight, vaccination and all you need for a travel to Africa was organized very unproblematic and very soon I was in the airplane off to Africa. I was very curious.
My coordinator from Studentsgoabroad in Ghana picked me up from the airport and brought me to my accommodation which I shared with Austrian and American volunteers. I got along with my room mates very well and therefore I did not have any problems with cultural shock, the climate or the homesickness. In the evenings, we cooked together and exchanged our experiences of the day. There were always volunteers around who helped me with any new situations such as the first time washing my clothes with my hands, going on the market and bargain or meeting the neighbourhood families. We spend a lot of time together, played games at night, had some drinks together or watched the live stream of the German football games.
I had to walk about 10 minutes to the hospital I worked at. The main part of my time, I was working in the laboratory, because I had some experiences from my studies and could apply them, as well as learn something new. The reason why I liked my work in the hospital so much is mainly the staff that was so kind to me. I learned a lot about diseases and methods of analyzing and simultaneously I made friends for life. From the beginning to the end I felt very integrated into the team and not as the “white volunteer”.
The last weeks I worked in the centre of diabetes where I could experience the work with patients. There I was welcomed very warm as well and I enjoyed going to work every day.
If I did not work in the hospital, there were always things to do. Either I went swimming in the pool of the local hotel for a cooling-down, or I went to the market and talked with the market-women or I visited one of the endless places of interest.
I always would decide for a stay abroad in Ghana again. Interpersonal, cultural and professional I broadened my horizon and made friends from all over the world.