Angelina Nagitta

Marketing, Advertising and PR - BA (Hons) 

Angelina visited Brazil, volunteering as a teacher in Rocinha, a suburb within the state of Rio De Janeiro, a few miles away from the centre of Rio.

Part of the community

“I used the international travel scholarship as an opportunity to volunteer for Project Favela in September and it was probably the best experience of my life."

"I was so wary of the area when I first started, I was scared to navigate it without a guide, however it ended up being totally fine. By the end of it I would wave to people as I walked over to class and cried with a woman who worked at a restaurant when I had to say goodbye to her. People at stores always asked how I was enjoying it and you would see the kids walking around with their families. They love seeing you outside of the classroom.”

Teaching young and old

“During my stay in Rocinha, Brazil, I was working and living with wonderful volunteers from all over the world. I lived in a basic volunteer apartment with a bedroom, kitchen area and bathroom. The apartment was generally close to the projects and there were plenty of restaurants and shops around to get food and water. It was only a short walk away from a bus stop where we were able to take the bus to lots of other great areas in Rio, like Ipanema, Lapa and Copacabana."

"I did the Teaching Programme so I got to teach smart and enthusiastic kids every day, as well as equally amazing adults most evenings. At night we got to lead some local classes, which were a lot of fun as well. I’ve never met more welcoming and friendly people than the ones in Rocinha!”

No regrets

"Arriving in a favela by yourself is daunting, of course, especially when you don't speak Portuguese. All I can say is that it's SO worth it to jump in headfirst and go for it - you will not regret it. Sure, it won't always be easy, but that just makes you a stronger, more independent person. The people you meet, the experiences you have, and the things you visit in Rio will stay with you forever. My main advice: stay as long as you can!! I was only there for a couple of weeks and I so wish I could have stayed longer. Also, try to learn a bit of Portuguese before you arrive, it does come in handy."

"I still miss Rocinha, the kids and volunteers all the time, but thanks to my Public Relations module I am able to have regular communication with the project as I have chosen Project Favela as my live client. As Scott (organisation owner) is on his own he finds it hard to keep the organisation organised when different volunteers arrive on top of struggling to promote the activity of the project on a small budget.  

"I am working on a full public relations plan that will be given to the organisation in January. It aims to improve the organisation’s communication with future volunteers and Universities like ours that promote volunteering and help raise much needed funds to improve the school building and the general community. I cant wait to start fundraising when I have finished my academic year and I am keen to get back out there next summer to see how my PR plan unfolds. The scholarship has given me a dream to pursue a career in PR for NGOs and I would not of realised this if I never had this opportunity."

Angelina Nagitta collage