Hi, my name is Sarah, I am 23 years old and I am from Austria. I wanted to improve my English skills and therefore I began to search on the internet for different possibilities and offers during the summer holidays. Due to the fact that I have already been to England and that I wanted to see something new, I made the decision to go to Ireland. Already after a short time, I found the demi-pair programme and was immediately exalted. It gives you the possibility to attend a language school, to live with a host family and care for children, where you can improve your English too. Of course, it was not very easy for me to leave my family and friends at home to spend the whole summer in a foreign country but it is worth that I did it. I benefit from it in so many ways.
First of all, I could improve my English skills and that is very important for me because I need them for university and later probably in a job. At the beginning, the language was a little bit a challenge for me, especially if the children spoke very fast, but I always said to me that the most important thing is, that I speak because only then it can get better.
Secondly, I met many people from different countries and formed a friendship with them. It was very interesting to hear from their countries and their life and it made me more open-minded to different cultures and lifestyles. In addition, I discovered and explored with my new friends a new country. Ireland has so many beautiful places and cities and I can recommend everybody to visit as much as possible of them during the stay.
Thirdly I learned how to live with an Irish family. I learned about their daily routine and their lifestyle. I am very happy and glad that I have such a kind and pleasant host family, who made my first days and the whole stay in Ireland without any problems. I noticed that caring for children is also important for my personal progress because I think I am now more responsible, reliable and patient.
The fourth and maybe most important point for me is, that I overcame my fears and did something on my own without my family and friends. Although the beginning was not very easy, I think it is important for the personal growth and maturation to do sometimes trips and journeys on your own.
I can recommend everybody to do the demi-pair programme because you can improve your English skills, learn about a new culture, meet new people, see many beautiful places and have great fun. For that reason, I can encourage everybody to make this experience. If you are old you will only regret the things you didn’t do when you were young. So do it and enjoy this unique experience!