As Winter fast approaches, I’m beginning to feel the need to travel to beautiful, colourful and exciting places even more! I’ve always wanted to take a gap year, whether that be to Australia, Asia or now my current plan of Ecuador for a crazy 10 weeks of travelling and volunteering with The Leap. Ecuador has always fascinated me with it’s amazing colours and vibrancy as well as it’s stunning views, which I’ll be sure to keep you updated with through the trip. The vast amounts of biodiversity, especially in the Amazon rainforest with its thousands of new species, astound me. By taking this time to travel to new places, one of my aims is to learn a new language and what better way to learn it than to go to Ecuador and learn Spanish there! I’m always keen for an adventure so I can’t wait to get to Ecuador to meet new people and start more adventures.Grace Crosby

In terms of getting there, I’ve had to do lots of fundraising and work, but I can tell it’s going to be so worth it as soon as I arrive at the airport and meet the rest of the Ecuador team for the 10 weeks that will follow. Some great ways I have found for earning a bit of extra money is rifling through my wardrobe and picking out clothes and selling them on Depop as this clears space and is quick and easy money! Having said that, the main way I have been earning money (other than working lots) has been through restoring an old fishing boat and giving it a new lease of life through fixing all holes with fibreglass, sanding, repainting and creating seats for it. This project was sold recently for Ecuador funding!

I can’t wait to share my adventures of volunteering in the Galapagos and the Andes and exploring the depths of the Amazon where I hope to experience new cultures with the Tsáchila tribe as well as new foods and delicacies, all whilst being part of an amazing and life-changing experience.