“Are you not scared?”
To be honest, not really.
I’m not saying this to show off how brave I am. I mean, sure I could be worried…. if I overthink it. But right now, I’m dreading 12 hours of travel and getting a business visa at the airport on the other side. Only after that will the adventure truly begin for me.
Travelling to a new country alone can be really nerve wracking. Especially when your a female going to a country where there are obvious gendered inequalities.
However, my excitement outweighs any fears I may have. Not only do I finally get to escape my not so exciting Lancashire summer but I am travelling to Tanzania to take part in an African Impact project. If any of you slightly know me, you know feminism is something I am extremely passionate about. So I have decided to take part in a female empowerment program neighbouring mount Kilimanjaro. The program involves educating adolescents about health and social issues such as genital mutilation which is still practised in many African countries. I know, it’s pretty hard hitting stuff. But if I have the opportunity to help someone even slightly, my time there will be worth any difficult discussion.
I think the reason I don’t feel so nervous is that I know I will be around people who care about the same issues I do. I’m going with a trustworthy company, who seem to be extremely respected not only internationally but -more importantly- by locals. I have also volunteered abroad before in Costa Rica when I was younger, and everyone there is in the same position as you so there’s really no need to be overly worried. Most people who volunteer do so solo. Please don’t let anyone scare you from travelling solo because of your gender, ethnicity – or even hair colour. I’m constantly reminded I’m blonde (oh really? didn’t realise) whenever a stranger asks where I’m travelling to on my own.
Anyway, I hope to candidly record my experience via blogposts …even if I am the only one who reads them as memories. I won’t have access to much (if any) WiFi so don’t expect regular updates.
Let’s just hope I survive Instagram withdrawal!