Arriving to Male airport in the Maldives was a hugely exciting experience, the views out of the plane were overwhelmingly beautiful. My dad was always desperate for me to be an accountant, but as I arrive at my new job as Volunteer Coordinator, I am again reassured that I made the right decision. I wanted to be Atolls’ Volunteer Coordinator because it would allow me to support the volunteers that are learning and doing amazing things. Atoll was the perfect organization to follow on from my Masters in wildlife conservation because wildlife conservation is not just about saving animals, it is also about supporting communities so that they are able to live good lives without exhausting resources.
Once I arrived at Male, I was greeted by the lovely employees from City King Hostel, where I spent the night. Travel around Maldives can be a little confusing as you have to go from one island to another, but with City Kings’ assistance it was a flawless and quick journey. The next day I headed to the island of Naifaru, this meant a slightly bumpy speed boat trip, but allowed me to see some of the islands and some pretty cool flying fish. When I arrived at Naifaru I got to meet atolls’ lovely volunteers and other employees, who have made settling in very easy.
I have now been working in the office for a couple of weeks. At first some things were confusing and there was a lot of emails to go through, my computer looked pretty hectic for the first week! But with everyone’s help I soon got the hang of everything. As Volunteer Coordinator there is quite a lot of admin to take care of, this isn’t always exciting, but if you are going to be doing admin, doing it in the Maldives isn’t half bad. I’m not sure if there is a job in England that allows me to go snorkelling and take care of turtles on my breaks (snorkelling in the Thames is rare and probably results in disease).
I am excited for this opportunity, the new people I will meet, learning about the interesting projects (I have a bit of a soft spot for the turtles already) and getting to know the community of Naifaru. I look forward to telling you all more about my adventures.