As promised, here is our first blog from Shiron, who is our Quest4Change summer project bursary recipient. Shiron is heading off to Villa Maria in Peru this summer, and is, as you can see, very excited! Congratulations again Shiron, and welcome to Quest – it is fantastic to have you on board, and we look forward to hearing more of you in the cominhg months, as you gear up for Peru.
“Thank you for taking the time to read my blog. So let me set the scene; the kind people over at Quest were offering a travel bursary of a £1000 towards one of their trips and immediately I was drawn into their Peru building project. Also this would also provide an optimum opportunity to practice my Spanish whilst making a direct impact on the lives of the impoverished Peruvian families. So I was invited to an interview, and then was short listed to the last four. At this point I was rather surprised that I had got this far, considering I was the younger applicant. But nevertheless Simon from Quest4Change had a phone interview with me regarding the trip and the reasons behind me choosing such a trip. There were many a reasons but I feel the primary reason that I chose Quest was because unlike the majority of other international projects, Quest does not just storm into a country and attempt to fix all the problems in the process patronising and providing false hope to the people. Something that I remember distinctively from the interview was Simon talking about Bob Geldof, after Live Aid, and his poor choice of words conveying the idea that they had tackled the problem of poverty and I feel it is such naive, rather immature comments that cannot be tolerated.
Another aspect of the interview that I found rather interesting was Simon’s question: imagine you are standing outside Villa Maria, and you open your eyes how would you feel? At this point, my phone went dead and I had to scavenge to phone to borrow, my luck. Well my response, well apart from the overwhelming heat and humidity of Peru, the congregations of shacks which occupy the hills representative of the poverty-stricken conditions which these Peruvian families are subject to through no fault of their own.
So onto some brief details about the project: over the duration of our stay alongside Quest and other volunteers we shall be building wooden house and sanitations systems to replace the plastic shacks that currently accommodate the Peruvian families. Alongside this we will be entertaining the children with I’m told 50 a-side football games and acting out plays.
I cannot wait to live this fantastical summer experience, and would like to thank everyone in advance, especially Quest4Change for believing and supporting me. I will be writing a blog when and where I can during the trip, with many photos.
In the meantime continue spreading the word and donating at https://mydonate.bt.com/fundraisers/shironrajendran