Jane, 24, and Bryan, 27, both from Cumbernauld, Scotland, spent four months volunteering with severely disabled children in Varanasi, North India, with not-for-profit charity organisation, Lattitude Global Volunteering.
They stayed with a host family in the Hindu holy city, which is perched on the Ganges, and worked every day with children who had varying physical and mental disabilities. The volunteering work we did was amazing, but so sad. People had told us that we would see the effects of extreme poverty, but to actually witness it and work with those affected is very hard. It was challenging but we both enjoyed it.
During a break from the Lattitude volunteering work, they took a trip to Darjeeling, and climbed Tiger Hill, to take in the beautiful view of the sunrise against the Himalayan Mountains. It was there that Bryan proposed to Jane, much to her surprise.
The proposal was very romantic and although we have been together for six and a half years, and had talked about getting married, it was still a surprise says Jane. I think for a short time he thought I was going to say no, as I couldnt answer, due to shock!
After the initial shock, Jane said yes and, with the help of their host family the wedding was arranged soon after.
We married in Varanasi on December 14 and it was the most fantastic day! Jane adds. Unfortunately our friends and family could not be there, but we plan to have another wedding in the UK, to make the marriage legal and to share our day with them adds Jane.
Bryan and Jane first met at College, where they were both studying Social Sciences, and decided to take a gap year together after graduation from university.
We wanted to travel and to make a difference to people, and Lattitude Global Volunteering offered the opportunity for us to do both. The charity was even able to help us financially said Jane.
Due to financial problems that followed the tragic death of Bryans father two years ago, Lattitude granted Bryan and Jane a bursary to help them realise their travel and volunteering dreams. They supplemented this with their own fundraising efforts, including a jumble sale and sponsored walk.
Lattitude is a not-for-profit charity organisation, providing overseas volunteer placements in 17 different countries, to young people from around the world. Its bursary and funding scheme helps to support young volunteers who may struggle to raise the funds required to travel abroad, alone.
Having returned from India in early January, Jane is now looking for a job and she has already decided how to spend her hard earned wages. Were going to start saving up, with a view to return to India she says.
Lattitude Global Volunteering offers young people from every background the opportunity to volunteer overseas, to find out further information about bursaries and the various placements available lattitude.org.uk
Notes to editors:
Lattitude Global Volunteering (Lattitude) is a charity specialising in volunteering for 17 25 year olds. We provide unique experiences of voluntary work placements for young people from around the world.
Lattitude has a global network of placements that spans 17 countries and includes projects in conservation, caring, community, camps and outdoor, medical, sports coaching, teaching, and language assisting. Current destinations include Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, Ecuador, Fiji, Ghana, India, Japan, Malawi, Mexico, New Zealand, South Africa Tanzania, Vanuatu and Vietnam.
Lattitude Global Volunteering is a UK registered international youth development charity (No. 272761), a company limited by guarantee (No. 01289296), a founder member of the Year Out Group, a member of BOND (British Overseas NGOs for Development) and a member of the Foreign Office Know Before You Go campaign.
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