Emma – SIHMA & BASP volunteer
Emma is from Rhode Island where she was working as a paralegal. She is now coming to the end of her time volunteering with both SIMHA and BASP at the Scalabrini Centre. This has been her experience.
“I love Cape Town, it’s really sad to leave. It kind of feels like my second home now. Cape Town is certainly a modern city, but I’ve found it’s very different (to Rhode Island). There are just so many different types of people that I’ve met and a lot more cultural variety than where I’m from, which has been a very interesting and cool experience.
I was placed here through a study volunteer program. I basically told them all of my interests, my background and they placed me here. Everyone was really friendly and welcoming when I first arrived.
“I’ve definitely grown professionally as I’ve become a lot better at explaining and being interactive with people. SIMHA has greatly helped with my writing skills and making connections.”
I definitely was challenged in BASP as I had no teaching experience and I didn’t really know how to go about coaching these students. I’ve never really thought of myself as being good at explaining things to people, so I’ve definitely grown professionally as I’ve become a lot better at explaining and being interactive with people. SIMHA has greatly helped with my writing skills and making connections.
My most memorable experience was the BASP graduation, it was the first graduation that they had, the first cohort of students that graduated with their associates degree and they are able to get their bachelors now. It was a really emotional, celebratory experience and everyone was really happy. It was cool to see their accomplishments.”
I have to go home and return to my job, but I foresee myself beginning to apply for law school and pursuing that. “