Kaya Gap Year: Community Volunteering in Jamaica Fall 2021

Caribbean
Contact: (413) 517-0266

Overview

Are you looking to take a break from school, or explore the world and your interests before the next phase in your life? Here at Kaya Responsible Travel, we offer culturally immersive, supported and exciting gap year programs (and don't worry, it doesn't have to be a year! It could be a month or two!). This one takes place in the sunny Jamaica, where you can volunteer in the community and get to know locals and their way of life!

More About Us

Our destinations are "non-traditional" in the sense that they're off the beaten path, and here at Kaya, we're all avid travelers and volunteers, so you can rest assured that our personalized support will go a long way towards making your experience memorable.

If you're concerned about responsibility, safety and sustainability in travel and volunteering, you can also feel at ease knowing that responsible travel is what we do, and that our mission is to uphold sustainable development. We have stringent Covid-19 protocols in place and we've only reopened programs where we are confident we can deliver experiences that are of low risk to you and to the communities you'll come to know while you're abroad.

Program Details

Depending on the state of travel this fall, you may be required to quarantine upon arrival. But have no fear! You'll engage in a daily morning exercise class to the beat of reggae music, develop and present workshops to local business enterprises, volunteer remotely with underserved children in Kingston, and enjoy cultural activities to get the most out of your Jamaican experience. Cultural activities include:

  • A Jamaican Dance Class! Learn cultural dance moves and popular dances like “Lebeh Lebeh”, “Genna Bounce”, “Lowi mi nuh” and “Good things Dem”
  • A Jamaican Cooking Class – Uncover local cooking secrets and learn the secret spices used for generations by a local Jamaican chef.
  • A Jamaican Culture and History Class – Learn everything there is to be known about Jamaica, its history, its traditions, and its people.
  • Jamaican Night – Put into practice the moves you learn, dance like a Jamaican, talk like a Jamaican, and eat authentic Jamaican foods with your new peers!

You will also have some downtime, so you can spend your afternoons relaxing, getting to know your fellow travelers, reading a book, and enjoying the Jamaican sun!

On Day 15, you will get clearance to no longer quarantine after having received your government release form. You will begin your community work volunteering as a teacher’s assistant at a kindergarten school with kids aged between 3-5 years for your third week of the program. Popular subjects to teach include basic Math, English, Drama, Sports Coaching and Arts & Crafts. You will work with the class teacher helping the students with basic subjects or give the children personalized help for those in need.

After week 3, you will be able to continue as a teacher’s assistant or engage in other volunteering activities within the Kingston community. Some of the volunteering activities available include sports coaching, women's empowerment or local environmental conservation. What are you interested in? Let us know and we can try and find you an amazing fit.

So are you ready for sunny Jamaica?

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