Georgia’s NZ Gap Year Part 1- Orientation

Posted on the 29th October 2018

Georgia Bone is a Lattitude Volunteer at St Matthew’s Collegiate in Masterton New Zealand. Here she is a schools assistant at a girls’ boarding school, mainly helping in boarding, classroom assisting and library duties.

I was one of the first to land into Christchurch. Dave, the New Zealand country manager collected a group of us from the airport. We had a stress-free journey from the airport to the hostel and Dave made us all feel at ease, encouraging us to get to know one another.

After everyone had arrived (35 Germans, 4 Brits, 2 Canadians, 1 American and 1 Italian) we had some downtime with our room-mates, who were assigned by the Lattitude team. This was helpful as they placed us with other volunteers who were located close to us on placement. We kept in touch, and would go on outings at weekends and celebrate birthdays together.

The next few days we had orientation which was organised and run by Sharyn and Dave. This entailed; sightseeing in Christchurch, a school orientation and a Maori culture experience. We were then put into groups with the people that would be located close to us. This was important because there are times that you feel isolated, and knowing there are other people nearer that are in the same situation makes it easier. Then, after leaving to go to our schools, one of the volunteers made a map of how far we were from each other which was helpful, especially during the holidays when we wanted to travel.

Part 2- Arriving and settling in- later this week

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