A CHILDCARE student is swapping Wearside for Tanzania to work as a volunteer in an orphanage.
Nancy Cooper, 21, is one of only four students worldwide to win a place on the Hörmann Scholarship, which offers young people the chance to work in social organisations around the world.
The childhood studies student at Sunderland University will spend six months working in the Irente Children’s Home in the north eastern region of Tanzania.
She said: “I’m very excited to have been chosen by Hörmann to be a part of this great experience.
“I want to pursue a career in social care so this is definitely going to be a great opportunity for me.”
Nancy has been allowed to take a leave of absence from her studies to take part in the project.
She will work with children aged two and under before they leave the orphanage for foster homes or to live with extended family.
A spokeswoman for Hörmann said: “This cross cultural experience gives Nancy the chance to put in to practice skills and experience she has gained in her studies to date.
“As well as providing all accommodation, travel subsistence and pay, Hörmann has also given Nancy a netbook, camera and mobile telephone so she can keep in touch with her family and write a blog in order to chronicle her experiences.”
The Hörmann Scholarship was set up in 2010, choosing four projects to support as part of their 75th anniversary celebrations.
The company said it is aimed at reflecting the commitment and team spirit traditionally fostered in the company and was open to friends and family of Hörmann employees throughout the world.
Nancy’s success in gaining a place on the scholarship comes as the Echo runs its Degrees of Success campaign with the university, aimed at encouraging more young people to go to university.
The campaign highlights how getting more Wearsiders into higher education will improve their lives as well as helping develop the city.
•THE Irente Children’s Home has been operating for more than four decades in north eastern Tanzania.
The orphanage, which is run by the Evangelical Lutheran Church in the country, can accommodate 35 children.
They live in a u-shaped building where they are divided in four rooms according to age.
Other people living at home are girls who attend a two-year pre-nursing course.
The staff consists of nurses, nurse attendants, cook, laundry man, gardeners, watchmen, secretary, accountant and a driver.
Women from abroad often stay at the home for about three months to work as volunteers.