On Monday 11 August, Max Donnell-Ford, 19, met with Martin Horwood MP to tell him about his experience as a Progressio International Citizen Service volunteer in Nicaragua.

Max told his MP: “My time in Nicaragua was incredibly enriching and enlightening. It gave me a wonderful opportunity to develop my own personal skills and resilience. At the same time, it helped me to understand the significance of working across cultures towards the social empowerment of the poor.”   

Max and his team in Nicaragua worked on projects focused on improving awareness about sanitation and environmental issues within the community. Max was involved in clearing a local area of natural beauty from litter to promote better waste management and he also assisted in the construction of a new classroom for a local school. To read Max's blog click here.

Cheltenham MP Martin Horwood said: “I’m really delighted that the UK government is supporting people like Max to take part in International Citizen Service. Max speaks really passionately about the social and environmental issues he discovered in Nicaragua. He’s right that it’s everyone’s responsibility to do something about poverty and environmental challenges, including the Nicaraguans themselves, but also each of us and our government. He’s a great example of the difference the ICS programme is making.”

Max is now using the experience he gained overseas to raise awareness about poverty here in the UK. Following his return from Nicaragua, Max organised a ‘Come Dine Below the Line’ fundraising event where he cooked a Nicaraguan dinner for 18 people at a cost of less than a £1 a head.

Max's Come Dine Below the Line menu