Looking for a volunteer experience with a difference? Take a look into Cloudhead if you’re heading through Northern Argentina.
Founded by Leigh Shulman, our interviewee, and her husband Noah Edelblum, Cloudhead is an art and education foundation based in Salta, Argentina. We discuss their three current projects, upcoming plans for a pre-college leadership course, and how you can get involved.
Currently Cloudhead is running Wichi water – providing Wichi children in a poor village with digital cameras, then investing the profits of photo sales into developing sustainable gardens and food sources within the village.
They’re working with a local high school, where at-risk students are developing skills in social media, photography, film, and peer leadership.
They house artists and bloggers in their ‘art house’ in San Lorenzo, Salta – developing exhibitions for resident and local artists, with some of the proceeds going back into the foundation.
Everything they do, Leigh shares, is designed to give a small local community access to the global community; or to introduce the global community to a local one. By connecting the right people, they’re beginning to make a difference in Salta.
Leigh also talks about her family’s travels around the world, as they searched for a new place to live. After a stop in Panama, they decide they had to move again and try to find a new place to settle.
They headed to Buenos Aires with a move to Uruguay on their minds, then were lured in the opposite direction by a job offer (which didn’t eventuate). However, they fell in love with the location, Salta, and decided to stop and make their lives here.
Salta is well known amongst Argentinians and also the Chileans, Peruvians and Bolivians — the province is so close to all these borders. It makes a great stop when overlanding into Argentina, or when exiting into the north.
The region is reputed to have the best empanadas in the world, and some of the finest milanesas. It has excellent wine, sourced from the Cafayate wine region just to the south. There’s a lovely colonial town centre, a growing modern arts scene, plus rafting and famed mountain climbing for the adventurous. All in all, it’s a place to add to your South America itinerary.