Shanara Ramirez Summer of Service in Madrid

Shanara Ramirez at Asociacion Valdeperales

I had the chance to volunteer in Madrid, Spain for a span of six weeks, during the duration of my visit I volunteered at three different sites. For four weeks I volunteered at Asociacion Valdeperales, an organization that has been around for twenty-seven years. The main goal of Valdeperales is to create educational and social programs for disadvantaged and immigrant groups in Madrid. During the summertime, Valdeperales has several summer camps for kids ranging from four to fourteen years old. As a volunteer, I had the chance to work inside the facilities as well as outdoors in the park with the kids. The purpose of the summer camp is to teach children English through fun leisure game and activities. Typically, I worked with the younger kids from four to six years old. Each week the children would learn about a new continent. When it came to North America, I had the chance to create a lesson plan in order to teach the children about American norms and customs. Furthermore, International Volunteer HQ gives volunteers the opportunity to provide English support for the children. I did this by preparing and giving an English activity two to times a week for one hour. My experience at Valdeperales was one I will not forget; the children were the best part of the program. They always came in with so much energy and eager to learn. At times I admit sometimes it become difficult to communicate with them, but they were always patient when I did not understand. I definitely became attached to these kids. I am extremely grateful to have met these amazing children with such big hearts.

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