PIECES is a student-driven social initiative focusing on children’s education in developing countries, with the goal of creating significant opportunities for their future.

PIECES was founded in 2009 by students of the University of St. Gallen within the SIM Master’s program. The SIM (Strategy and International Management) has as part of its curriculum the requirement that its students get involved in a social project. This is how a first group of three students went to Isla Ometepe in Nicaragua to teach as volunteers for the very first time. It was a successful experience and the team decided to keep it going and turn this one time project into an organisation, PIECES, that would continue to engage students in such initiatives. Since then, PIECES has greatly evolved, being organised with a board counting the heads of departments, active members, and an advisory board counting the founding members and others, for them to guide and support the organisation at the university.

The aim of PIECES is to encourage volunteering amongst the students of the University of St Gallen and foster their personal growth as well as social commitment by offering them an enriching volunteering experience abroad. After a thorough preparation process within our organisation the student volunteers travel to the project sites as a team and teach local youth for several weeks.

Our goal is to improve the English skills of highly motivated and enthusiastic kids, all the while imparting them essential values for them to contribute to the sustainable development of their community. We hope to open them a path to a better future.

It is important to us that we foster growth in children, but also in our volunteers. We support them in every way possible to guarantee a successful experience for everybody involved. Our volunteers travel to the country and work directly with the kids to improve their English skills, triggering a process of cultural exchange, sharing global values and essential knowledge they have as committed and experienced students, and supporting the children to become capable leaders in their societies. Inspiration is our primary goal.

More information available in the following document: 2015 PIECES Overview