Nanneella’s Ayla Pearson will spend the next four months in a remote village in Africa working with local people in a welfare role.GRAHAM WILLIS August 19, 2014 11:00pm
When Ayla Pearson heard about the chance to work in an African village for four months, she grasped the chance with both hands.
Later this month, the Nanneella resident will fly to Malawi in south-east Africa where she will work closely with women and children in a small village.
‘‘I have always dreamed of working with people who have less than we do and this is something I’ve needed to do for a long time,’’ she said.
‘‘My grandmother Margie (Rochester’s Margaret Pearson) said she has always seen this in me so I guess she has encouraged me to do something like this.’’
The desire to travel overseas started when Miss Pearson completed a Lions exchange to Italy and Germany in 2012.
‘‘That probably gave me the travel bug,’’ she said.
Travelling to Africa she will be part of a small contingent organised by Latitude Global Volunteering, which operates gap year programs for students who recently completed their schooling.
‘‘I came across the program at a careers expo in Melbourne and it started from there,’’ she said.
Miss Pearson will stay in Nkhotakota village and work at the Bwengu protection and Health Centre with another girl in the program.
‘‘My role will be a community worker bonding and forming trust with the women and children,’’ she said.
‘‘We will wait and see what else is involved in the role.’’
A former champion swimmer, Miss Pearson is hoping she may have the chance to do some swimming coaching.
She said the experience would be life-changing.
‘‘It will not only be an eye-opener, but will give me the opportunity to find out more about who I am and where my future lies,’’ he said.
She has received great support from her parents Lori and Simon for the venture.
‘‘Dad was apprehensive at first, but they really wouldn’t let me go if they didn’t think it was safe,’’ she said.
As far as daily life in Malawi, Miss Pearson was looking forward to learning the local language, even though English was widespread.
‘‘The food will be different,’’ she said.
‘‘A main part of the diet is Nsima which is like a potato mash, while fruit and vegetables are also plentiful.
‘‘Meat is very expensive so I don’t think we will have much of it.’’
Departing on Sunday, Miss Pearson said she was excited and nervous about the venture.
‘‘This has been my dream for a long time and I am thrilled it is finally happening.’’
Coca-Cola Amatil has confirmed it will be pressing on with its $100 million redevelopment of SPC Ardmona.
Beautiful weather greeted Tungamah residents for the 18th running of the Tungamah Lions Ten Thousand on Sunday.
When Keith and Marion Grumley and their growing family moved to Tatura on January 18, 1968, little did they know that it would be the start of a long and lasting connection to the town.
Mary and Molly Byrne are urging others to support National Bandanna Day today.
Rochester Rotary Club has celebrated its 50th birthday in style.
Sorting future of Campaspe pools
A theatre production with a difference is coming to Seymour.
Local athletes will go head-to-head with some of the best competitors from around the world in swimming and athletics in December.
District residents and visitors will be able to enjoy some of the region’s most beautiful private gardens on Sunday.
The 116th annual Cobram Show went off with a bang at the weekend, drawing in crowds from far and wide for two days of fun.
The annual Deniliquin Garage and Town Sale event is being held tomorrow, and more than 16 homes are registered for the bargain day.
Fifty new full-time jobs will be created at Tatura with a multimillion-dollar expansion of the abattoirs expected to be announced today.
Remembering Australian political giant Gough Whitlam who once called on Benalla police to stop then Treasurer Frank Crean on his journey up the Hume to phone the PM.
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