Applications for LE Romania are now open!
Program dates: June 17 - August 5
June 18th – June 22nd
July 13th- July 15th
August 3rd- August 4th
- Number of volunteers: 8 - 10
- Language requirement: None
- Living conditions: Mostly rural, modern housing; access to most amenities
- Opening and closing ceremonies: Budapest
- Visa: Not needed for US volunteers
THE IDEAL VOLUNTEER:
You will arrive a few days before teaching begins for orientation in Budapest. This is a great opportunity for you to get to know the other volunteers, the program director, get acclimated to the new environment, and be introduced to Eastern European culture. During this time, we will discuss lesson planning and other teaching strategies that will help you to succeed in the classroom. There will also be time to explore one of the most beautiful cities in the world. The Chain Bridge, Danube River, Margitsziget, ruin bars, and castles and thermal baths galore are just some of the many sites one can experience in Budapest! On the Saturday following orientation, you will travel (by bus or train) to your assigned location. Host families will pick you up directly from the bus/ train station. They will go over information about their school schedules and the process of getting to school. Once with your host families, you will not have many expenses (other than buying souvenirs for loved ones back home!) since transportation, food and housing are all provided by the host family.
During the midpoint break you will take the opportunity to debrief and reflect on your first teaching experience, exchange teaching ideas/ lesson plans, and discuss ways to improve teaching strategies with your fellow volunteers. You can also partake in more cultural and scenic outings, indulge in some well-deserved down time, and ultimately reconnect with your fellow volunteers before traveling to your second placement.
The program will conclude with a 2-3 day closing session in Budapest. This is an opportunity to reconnect with the other volunteers for a final brief program reflection. You’ll experience a little bit more of the Budapest before heading home or continuing your travels.
***Note that all volunteers are responsible for the costs of orientation, midpoint break, and closing session, which include organized hostel stays, dining, and all group excursions.
Eastern European host families are extremely warm, welcoming, hospitable, accommodating, and will be eager to show you their local sites, scenery, and surroundings. Families typically have children, and at least one English-speaking member. You will likely spend much of your free time attending various family-oriented events and gatherings, and can also walk through the region’s iconic sunflower fields, go hiking with your host siblings, visit the strand (pool), play soccer, go out for ice cream, experience a village festival, and spend many long nights having laughter-filled conversation!
You will likely be placed in a small village, although some volunteers are placed in larger urban settings. Everything will be within walking distance (including the schools), although some families may provide bicycles for added convenience. However, if placed in an urban setting, transportation to schools may take a bit longer (up to one hour maximum), and involve using the city’s transit system. While you may not be far from your fellow volunteers and transportation between all villages is easily accessible, you’ll probably be too preoccupied with the activities in your own village and host family to visit one another.
Houses contain moderate amenities, such as running water, plumbing, electricity, and accessible internet. Families also usually have televisions, cellphones, and cars, but likely will not have air-conditioning. Due to its continental climate, Romanian summers do get quite hot and humid, but most houses are built to accommodate this.
MEET YOUR PROGRAM DIRECTOR, AMANDA!
Amanda is a third year biology and dance studies double major from Santa Monica, CA. She is passionate about combining these two fields of interest, specifically with regards to how dance can be used as a form of movement therapy for physiological and neurological disorders. If she's not in a class or dance studio, you can find her eating froyo, trying out Berkeley's various coffee shops, and attempting to learn acro yoga.
"My experience as a volunteer for LE Romania 2017 was a memorable one in which I learned a lot about myself and my abilities, became immersed in a culture that was very different from that of the Western US, and was embraced by an extreme amount of generosity from everyone I engaged with. Inspired by the global perspective that I gained through LE, I decided to broaden my course topics and curriculum at Cal. I am ecstatic to be returning to Eastern Europe this summer to help future volunteers
have a memorable experience like mine."
Interested applicants can reach Amanda at firstname.lastname@example.org.