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After I finished my studies I decided to travel before my work started. I wanted to do something very different to my study subject and have new experiences. Besides, it was important to me to do something useful and make a difference. As my husband is from Peru, I wanted to explore more of his country of origin and practice my Spanish skills. I was always fascinated by the jungle and had never had the chance to see it before, so I chose to spend a month at the Animal Shelter project of NGO Taxi. It was the perfect decision for me.

After the best Spanish course ever in Peru and a wonderful week at NGO Taxi headquarters with the nicest people and exciting trips, I started my journey into the jungle with my NGO Taxi sister Jana.

Our jungle family Cesar and Victoria gave us a warm welcome and we felt comfortable in the village immediately. The work with the animals on Cesar’s project was an amazing experience. We built a new enclosure for Selva the tapir; showed tourists around the project; rebuilt the fences for the turtles; fed the crazy funny monkeys and sleepy Mochila the baby sloth; and walked with our rubber boots through the jungle looking for the favorite leaves of the Stuarts, the two squeaky capybaras, always accompanied by Unicornio, the dog-like pekari. I had never worked with my bare hands before but besides the exhausting sweaty mosquito part I felt very happy and more grounded surrounded by the amazing colorful nature and the exotic animals.

Besides the experience of the project itself, I got to know the daily life of the people in the village. Although they live simply and don’t have many options they all seemed happy. I liked to see that the family plays an important role; they are all very close and share everything. Even though they don’t have much they are all very friendly and open-hearted.

At first I was afraid to travel somewhere without my husband, friends or family, but it was wonderful to discover that the whole world is full of nice people and I don’t have to be afraid. I will never be alone because in our hearts we are all the same.