Stage Malta gives young people the opportunity to make big decisions in their lives with no pressure. Here, we explore the organisation.
Stage Malta is Malta’s most recognised and respected institution that has been a catalyst in non-formal education of young people all around the world.
For the past 15 years, this program assists youth who want to create bonds with people from different backgrounds, and makes them go back home with one more remarkable experience in their lives.
Today, everyone is familiar with Stage Malta’s name thanks to its commitment of providing exceptional learning outcomes, dedicated services, tangible results and fruitful collaboration with all those who share mutual goals.
More than 8,000 local organisations trusted Stage Malta with providing them with interns, stagiaires, researchers, mobility guidance and trade visits, and so far, it has hosted learners and staff from more than 600 educational institutions, 150 secondary schools, 23 national agencies and other partners.
Behind these impressive numbers stands the tireless work of Stage Malta’s staff.
We were lucky enough to talk to Martha Gauci, Head of the International Office at Stage Malta, who, in this piece, shares in more depth why this experience empowers youth, what they benefit from it, and also highlights the weight of human relations for this program.
By the end of this interview, you will also hear from young people who experienced this wonderful adventure, and you will find out how to apply yourself for opportunities with Stage Malta.
A Push to Find Purpose
The inspiration, she says, has been a very simple one: to provide a safe space for youngsters (students or graduates) to discover or rediscover themselves whilst getting to know new people and new cultures.
“The fact that they [youth] are doing so whilst living on a laid-back Mediterranean island, helps these youngsters take a step back and reflect on who they are, who they want to be and their purpose in life.”
Gauci further says that over the years, Stage Malta has discussed ideas, shared best practices, and built friendships with different colleagues in many Colleges and Universities.
She emphasises Erasmus, as a dynamic programme that the only way in which to utilise the possibilities available is to be open to ideas and learn from peers.
“Together with our peers we discuss how best to create a memorable opportunity for youngsters who embark on this once in a lifetime Erasmus journey,” she adds.
Stage Malta’s procedures, experience, dedication and hard work has left a positive imprint on the youngsters who conducted their internship with Stage Malta.
“It is thanks to these youngsters’ recommendations that we get to welcome interns from all over the globe on a weekly basis.”
Growing from a Unique Experience
She further shares what she believes are the key factors in preparing people on a journey of experience, exploration and learning with a professional internship with Stage Malta.
“When I was a young person, one of my professors told me: ‘Never assume! You will only make an ‘ass’ of ‘u’ (you) and ‘me’ (ass-u-me)’.”
This stuck with Gauci, and she explains the reason.
“When one releases their expectations, they are free to enjoy things for what they are instead of what they think they should be. There is just one expectation – everything differs totally from home.”
That is why it is called an experience, because each person (whatever his/her age) will have no choice but to discover and adapt to new things every single minute of the day.
“Challenges faced by one person,” she goes on, “will differ completely from the ones experienced by another,” Gauci elaborates.
“Creating expectations will only make challenges harder. But, when we let go of expectations, reality can exceed them in ways we never expected!”
Speaking from experience, Gauci insists that all those who travel to Stage Malta will tell you that the team will not only seek to help them but also understand their aspirations, their fears, as well as their love for life.
“Stage Malta Interns live with like-minded people: young people from all over the globe who travel to Malta for work experience. They work with experiences and motivate people who have been interns themselves and thus understand their doubts, difficulties, and ambitions.”
They also live among the local community, some end up playing football with the local amateur team, others volunteer in an animal shelter in their free time, whilst others share a drink, a joke and some free nibbles at the local bar.
It is understandable that not all the people they meet end up being their best friends.
“Some will be just acquaintances, others brilliant company or conversation, others an inspiration and maybe someone ends up taking a special place in their heart.”
She believes it is the human relationships that make their hard work worthwhile.
“Now we can boast of a few Stage Malta babies, after their parents met in Malta, fell in love and… well, we will leave the rest to your imagination!”
Apply and Hear from Others Who Experienced It
Are you considering applying for an internship with Stage Malta? Well, that’s simple and carries no fee or obligation.
One needs to fill in this short application on https://stagemalta.org/application/ and leave the rest up to the strong team of experienced people who make up Stage Malta.
What Youth Have Been Saying About the Time in Malta:
Kamil from Poland
I would have never imagined that Malta and Gozo had such great history. Nature (although almost hidden) is stunning, you just need to look for it and once you find the beautiful spots, stop and enjoy. I truly enjoyed my time in Malta.
I became more confident in the English language. I ate a lot of nice food, met a lot of friendly people from all over the globe and discovered what I want in life. I am very grateful.
Gabriele from Lithuania
In Malta, I met such amazing people. They all left a great positive effect on my heart. They made sure that I feel happy, safe and understood. I will never forget Malta. I will come back.
Thank you Stage Malta for such a happy time.
Mona from Germany
Malta is very different from Germany, but that is good. If I wanted it to be like Germany, I would not have come to Malta.
The more I discovered about Malta and the way things are done, the more I appreciated Germany. It is good to experience and enjoy different things, different people, different buses, different food.
Malta is unique. You need to experience it at least once in your lifetime.
Photos: Stage Malta
Another inspirational story right here, this time from Kenya.
All your donations will be used to pay the magazine’s journalists and to support the ongoing costs of maintaining the site.