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Background to AIESEC

AIESEC is an international student run organisation that is based across over 60 countries. It arranges international exchanges for students, or recent graduates, to work as a trainee in three main fields: Commerce, Technology or Development. It was originally set up for solely economic and financialy orientated students - explained by the french acronym for it's title "Associacion International de Estudiantes en Sciencia de Economia et Commerce" , however AIESEC has outgrown this description and now takes students from a variety of fields to serve in an assortment of roles overseas. 

Interaction with GAIA

AIESEC has provided GAIA with two trainees who have come through itīs "Development" stream which looks to place the trainees in NGOs in the host country. We are grateful for the work of Bryan Walker, representing AIESEC UK, who spent time out here in Venezuela looking for a possible development traineeship opening, and also for the work of the members of AIESEC at the Univerity of Simon Bolivar (USB) in Venezuela for helping set the traineeships into motion. 

Our first trainee, Jason Recordon, was a student reading Business Studies at Manchester University, in England. He came out to work with us in June 2000 and worked with us until September. Jason initially made a huge contribution in researching and compiling the extensive database on plants which we now hold. He was also a tremendous asset when it came to fund raising - using his fluent knowledge of both Spanish and English to help give presentations to potential donors. Notably, he was responsible for securing a contribution from the Finnish Embassy which at present is funding our project of agrifam and recycling in the communities of El Junquito. We also appreciated his experience on the trips to the 5 shelters in Vargas, where he helped with the workshops that we gave in conjunction with the US Peace Corps. 
When Jason had to return to his last year of university in September we were keen to have another trainee and continue our relationship with AIESEC. So, in January 2001, we received our next trainee, James Kenworthy, a recent economics graduate from LSE university in England. At present, James has been working to give GAIA a new website, able to be read in both English and Spanish - a vital asset to promote our organisation, offer advertising and hence to encourage funding. We have also appreciated his company on trips to Simetaca, our last shelter in which we worked, where he has helped film and record workshops. This is necessary for the reports we give to our sponsors and has also helped give him more material for the website. We look forward to the coming months where he will be able to help in a number of ways, both in the office and out in El Junquito where we will be starting our new project.  


Many thanks to AIESEC for establishing this link with us. We hope our future continues to be as diverse, challenging and rewarding as it is at the moment and that we can maintain the relationship with AIESEC to provide us with the benefit of their trainees when their is an opening for their help.  




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