After graduating with a degree in Design and Advertising, Megan decided to travel to Arequipa, Peru where she volunteered for two years.
This line of worked peaked her interest, therefore in 2017, she joined Volunteers Peru as Project Manager. In her free time, she enjoys drawing, stone carving and playing with her dog, Rambo.
What is your favorite travel memory?
One of my favorite travel memories is from Italy in 2016. I was with three lovely friends (two of whom lived in Italy) and we were in Pisa on the 16th of June, which is the Luminara. This is a festival to celebrate San Ranieri, and the whole city lights up.
Workers start around midday hanging and lighting candles over all the buildings along the river Arno. At 11 pm, a spectacular firework show with music starts and carries on for an hour. The streets are flooded with people and in every Piazza (city square) there are people eating, drinking, and dancing.
The party goes on to the early hours of the morning! The following morning, we got a train to Rome where I then had the best carbonara ever, which I still speak of to this day. For those interested, the restaurant is called La Carbonara, in Rome.
How have you changed/grown since working for your current company?
I have been back and forth between the UK and Peru for several years now, so I feel acclimatized to life here. However, working for Volunteers Peru has definitely taught me some things: I have become more patient, flexible and understanding.
Being flexible is key with the projects because there are intrinsic cultural differences, having patience is necessary when working internationally through different time zones and distinct cultural backgrounds, and being able to work with a diverse group of people has allowed me to become a more understanding person.
If you could go on any program that your company offers, which one would you choose and why?
I would go to Tomepampa because it is the most precious village, and the scenery is magnificent. The lifestyle is completely different; everything is more relaxed, fresh and calm!
Being a rural village and an 8-10 hour bus ride away from Arequipa, it does not appeal to everyone, but it appeals to me!
The school does not receive much attention, and it is not a very touristy area at all, so English speakers are needed to assist in the classrooms and to give the students cross-cultural exposure.
What makes your company unique? When were you especially proud of your team?
Volunteers Peru is unique because we support existing projects rather than run our own. This means we work with the community and for the community. We are also very small, so everyone’s work is hugely appreciated. Another bonus of being small is that and we have close relationships with our projects and get to know them really well.
I was especially proud of our team when we successfully organized a school exchange between Tomepampa and England for 12 children. The logistics were a bit difficult to figure out, but it all worked out well in the end and they had an amazing time!
What do you believe to be the biggest factor in being a successful company?
I believe that the biggest factor in creating a successful company is communication! No matter the country, goal, or size of the company, maintaining communication as a priority needs to be at the top of the list in order to be successful with volunteers and projects.