Sunday, January 24, 2016

Nicole Goes To The Philippines 2015

During the fall of 2015, I was lucky enough to be able to live in a third world country as an intern for a micro finance company. It was 3 months of my life where I was able to help people improve on their businesses through teaching about financial principles, customer service and other lessons I prepared. It was an incredible experience full of ups and downs, but it was something I wouldn't trade for anything. The Philippines is filled with friendly people, delicious food and beautiful islands which I traveled too. Here you will find all the links to every part of my internship!

Of course, many preparations were needed before I left. I needed to get my visa, passport, international health insurance and immunizations. I also needed to pack...

Manila Diary | Week One
It was 4:00 in the morning; and my family piled into our car to take me to the airport. Even with months to prepare, when the day came for me to fly out, I couldn't sleep at all the night before. My mind was buzzing all night long wondering what would be waiting for me when I reached the Philippines... 

Manila Diary | Week Two
I like it here. I've almost already adapted to the warmer and more humid climate. I get more antsy when I think about work tomorrow. I'm nervous for what may happen, but I want to channel those nerves into motivation and be ready to get some work done... 

 Manila Diary | Week Three
...It's finally time for our first adventure! Taal Volcano is the smallest active volcano in the world. It's a good thin most of my group are adventurous people. We packed our backpacks and made arrangements for the 2 hour commute to Tagaytay...

Manila Diary | Week Four
...But after awhile, you realize something. It's when honest communication happens and the desire for change to provide a genuine helping hand, that alone translates the same across any country.

Manila Diary | Week Five
After spending so much time in Manila, some of us decided that it was time for an adventure and do a little island hopping. We found a good deal for a flight to Cebu! We packed our backpacks and groggily got out of bed around 3 o'clock in the morning on Saturday morning, but we made our flight and we were on our way!

Manila Diary | Week Six
The half-way mark... I have learned many things on this trip. None of which I actually thought I would learn, but I did anyway. This internship wasn't like I thought it would be at all...

Manila Diary | Week Seven
I packed my camera with me this week to take pictures of the places I go. All the centers are very different from one another, each with a different set of problems and personalities. Teaching people about money management (who are essentially in survival mode) has proven to be more difficult than I imagine...

Manila Diary | Week Eight
Life is good down here. Our lessons are beginning to make some sort of impact and truly, tht is the best that we can hope for. Looking for a silver lining, during any time of difficulty, is one thing you can do to make your life a little more enjoyable...

Manila Diary | El Nido, Palawan
The #1 Island in the world. This was the best week of my life. Ever.

Manila Diary | Puerto Princessa, Palawan
Underground river trail and the beautiful island Cowrie.

Manila Diary | Week Ten
...They say that to travel is to discover you. Some bigger meaning or some task to do. You take roads less traveled and discover your own. Different people different ideas, that's where you start to grow.

Manila Diary | Week Eleven
This week, Blake and I worked on developing a written, outlined program for the next group of interns coming down to Manila. We want to make sure that they feel well prepared and equipped with any and all information we can give them...

Manila Diary | Week Twelve
We decided we needed a night to celebrate one last time while we still had everyone here. If there's one thing that Filipino's love, it's karaoke night! They sing as loud and proudly as they can! Anything from 90's punk rock to romantic and cheesy love songs.

Manila Diary | Week Thirteen
Our time has finally come to an end. The past 3 months were nothing like I thought it was going to be. I had no idea what to expect when I arrived, but I am leaving with a new understanding, a new sense of self with memories that will last me the rest of my life...

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