Lauren Blodgett
Massachusetts, USA

“My three months in Cape Town turned my world upside down – in a wonderful way.  Between spending my days at my internship and my nights and weekends with my VAC family, I felt as though every moment was packed to the brim with unforgettable memories.  At my internship at the Scalabrini Centre of Cape Town, I was able to interact with refugees from all over the African continent on a daily basis.  Whether I was teaching English, helping them apply for jobs, or doing various other activities with them, connecting with these people was a very humbling and eye-opening experience.  The stories I heard and relationships I formed with these refugees will stay with me for the rest of my life.  While I anticipated having an intense internship, I was not prepared for the profound impact that my fellow VAC interns would have on me – as they quickly transformed from acquaintances into lifelong friends. Being around so many wonderful people, especially with a place like Cape Town as our playground, has left me feeling rejuvenated and full of so much love.  While Cape Town itself is wonderful, the friendships I formed there are what made my experience so special, and they have been the hardest thing to leave behind. I have been so fortunate to carry home with me so many meaningful memories and experiences that will impact the way I live the rest of my life – from going on a safari, to bungee-jumping off a bridge, to spending a night in a township, or even just goofing around Obz. Thank you to VAC for providing me with the platform for such an enriching experience. And to anyone who is considering participating in this program, you definitely should – you will have the time of your life!”

-Lauren Blodgett, pictured during a trip along the Garden Route in South Africa.