In the wake of recent publicised events where people on gap years have been injured, a company is providing tips on staying safe while coaching abroad.
3 September, 2013: When two girls on their gap year suffered an unprovoked acid attack in Zanzibar recently the issue of gap year safety was once again raised in the media. Such incidents are very unlikely to occur, but Gap Africa, which organises coaching abroad positions across the continent, is using the opportunity as a timely reminder of some basic safety tips for anyone going on a gap year.
The first thing it recommends for people planning a gap year is to make sure that they use a trusted company. Good companies will often have established processes in place in an emergency and may be able to provide support to anyone who suffers any problem while away from home.
People who go on coaching abroad gap years in Africa will often find themselves living and working in countries where the culture is very different and so cultural sensitivity is extremely important. Often, behaviour that people may consider normal back home may be considered offensive where they are living, and could put them in uncomfortable situations. It is recommended that cultural differences are strongly adhered to and that being careful around alcohol is vital in order to avoid other potential risks.
Gap Africa also suggests taking out a good travel insurance policy. If things do go wrong when people are on their gap years, it is important that they have access to medical care and the option of being flown back home. A comprehensive travel insurance policy is absolutely crucial for this purpose.
Coaching abroad is a very popular activity on gap years and it has many advantages for people who want to do something different and help out in a community in Africa. Although it is a very safe way to spend a gap year, safety should not be taken for granted and gap year travellers should keep the above tips in mind.
Gap Africa Projects provides a number of gap year projects across Africa for people who want to help communities across the continent and includes projects focused on conservation, sports and wildlife training. More information can be found at the company’s website at http://www.gapafricaprojects.com .
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