Yuvraj spent 10 weeks volunteering with Raleigh International in Costa Rica and Nicaragua. He wanted to see the world and get a new perspective on life before he started work on a graduate scheme at KPMG
My experience with Raleigh International has definitely given me a new sense of perspective, particularly in terms of viewing my life. I've learnt that you don't need lots of material-things to be happy and that there's a whole world out there to be explored.
The reputation of Raleigh stood above any other companies, both professionally and through the positive testimonials that I had read. This was combined with the fact that I knew it was an ethical organisation.
I volunteered on a community project in San Jose, Miraflor. The work we were undertaking was physically and mentally draining, and I felt humbled and impressed by the locals who would work twice as hard as us and not tire. It was also inspiring the way that no local ever complained no matter what the task - clearly an example to follow. The family I stayed with were happy and accommodating to the extreme, often going to great lengths to improve our comfort in the smallest ways. They did not have much to give, but nevertheless they gave all they could with a smile and genuine pleasure.
The biggest thing I have learnt on this trip is that 'giving' is far more rewarding than 'receiving'. One of the highlights of my expedition experience was giving the boy of my host family my head torch. He was so happy and grateful for what I considered such a trivial item.
My aim on the trip was to take myself out of my comfort zone by experience diverse and new things and I achieved this. On the first day of the trek we had to walk 25 kilometres and I remember feeling absolutely exhausted. It was so difficult to motivate myself to keep going in such intense heat. However I learnt that a group of people that have never met before can make sacrifices and support each other through hardships, forging bonds of friendship as strong as steel in the process.
I now plan to travel around South East Asia with university friends before starting work at KPMG in September.
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