Hi, I'm a university student going to Recife for an internship teaching English with Students Helping Street Kids International, the Rotary School, and Movimiento Pro-Crianca. I am wondering, what is the local reputation of these organizations? I may have an option to simply travel the country doing independent study projects through my college, but I have to pay a lot to come volunteer for this internship when I could be traveling the whole time. Any advice? Should I just travel the country or commit to living in Recife for six months, PAYING to WORK for this organization?
The two experiences would be completely different. I don't know the organisation you'd be working for, but I have lived in Recife, and my son spent his "gap year" teaching English in Fortaleza - a mixed experience, but on the whole a positive one. Rotary is, of course, well respected. It's up to you, of course, which option appeals most. I was myself a volunteer teacher in India, and it was one of the best times of my life. (I was paid, though, even if it was only pocket money.) You'd see much more as a traveller, but never be part of a community. And Brazilians are very hospitable. Hard choice, but on the whole I'd go for the volunteer experience. Good luck, whichever your choice!
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