Do you have a spare room in your house? Are you interested in learning about other cultures? Local charity, Hounslow PHAB is appealing to the public to offer accommodation to young people aged 18-22 from Zambia and the UK who will undertake voluntary work with community projects in Hounslow for three months starting this July. The participants will be in Hounslow to take part in Global Xchange, an international youth and development programme run by VSO, the British Council, and other partner organisations around the world. Global Xchange is also part of the pilot year of International Citizen Service (ICS), funded by the UK Department for International Development (DFID).
Hounslow PHAB requests families, singles, flat-shares and couples to consider being part of a unique cultural exchange and apply to offer accommodation to 2 young people, 1 from Zambia and 1 from the UK for a period of 2 to 12 weeks. Global Xchange provides a weekly allowance of £100 to cover food costs and utilities and ensures programme supervisors are on hand to offer support whenever necessary.
A key factor in the success of the programme is that volunteers live with hosts within the community rather than living as a group in a hostel. This offers a far better insight into life in Hounslow. Equally, hosts benefit from the opportunity of learning about another culture and having an international experience without leaving home.
While in Hounslow the volunteers will work with a diverse range of local community projects such as working alongside people with disabilities, working with young carers or the elderly and working with the race and equality council.
Phab’s aim is to promote and encourage people of all abilities to come together on equal terms, to achieve complete inclusion within the wider community. Hounslow Phab is one of over 200 clubs in the Phab network and provides local amenities to residents of Hounslow and surrounding areas. The Thursday club runs from 7:00 pm to 9:30 pm unless conditions dictate otherwise. The club consists of a large club room with kitchen, pool table, TV, games consoles, and comfy chairs. Alongside is a fully equipped gym hall for indoor football and other games.
Global Xchange is a partnership programme managed by the Voluntary Services Overseas (VSO) and the British Council as well as a range of partners worldwide. Established in 2005 as an international volunteering exchange programme for 18 to 25 year olds from the UK and other countries, Global Xchange has developed in a number of distinct programmes and publications that all support the vision of a world where active global citizens create positive change and build mutual understanding and respect.
At the heart of this vision is the idea of reciprocal exchange, where young people and those who work with young people, are able to learn from the experiences of others around the world, and put that learning into action. Since 2005, over 40 teams of Global Xchange volunteers have taken part in Youth Xchange in communities throughout the UK, and communities in Bangladesh, China, Egypt, Ghana, India, Indonesia, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Malawi, Mongolia, Morocco, Nepal, Nigeria, Pakistan, the Philippines, South Africa, Syria, and Uzbekistan. Hounslow has been the UK community in exchanges with Nigeria, Kazakhstan, Egypt, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and the Philippines over the years
Each cross-cultural team of volunteers is supported by two Programme Supervisors, one from the UK and one from the exchange country. The UK Programme Supervisor is responsible for developing the programme in the UK host community and, with their overseas counterpart, for facilitating the implementation of the 6-month programme in the UK and overseas.
International Citizen Service (ICS)
ICS is a Government-backed volunteering opportunity open to 18-22 years olds from all walks of life to work in a developing country for 10-12 weeks to help reduce poverty and injustice. It can be a life-altering experience. Volunteers have the opportunity to make a real difference in the poorest parts of the world, develop their own skills and experience, and gain an understanding of how development projects and volunteering can help improve the lives of others.