My name is ShengJin and I’ve already live life in Nakuru for three weeks, these days are really impressive for me. I’ve never expect I’ll experience such interesting, and meaningful days like these. I do have a lot of fun in the center and with children, I taught them to draw, we draw the character in Madagascar and Doraemon, many kids draw amazing pictures. We held a family party to dance, to singing, the food, the music, everything were just perfect at that night. And we decorated the study room together, to make a heart photo wall to remember our friendship. I showed them my country, my hometown, my university and my life. And we talk about our own dreams and ideas. It is great to know that they are trying to make a difference for their life just like me; it is great to know that we are actually the same. We had a really good time. And through these things, I really recognize that many children have talent on art and sport, but maybe they just do not have the chance to develop it, and it is really make me feel that how lucky I’m, and it is made me do really understand what is the poverty and how is poverty have such influence on people’s life. It is made me more cherish my life, and made me know more about the world. Life is not always easy sometimes, and problems are jumping out all the time. We are short of money, so we have to change the breakfast for children from Mandazi and milk tea to porridge, it really made kids upset and terrified to stick into starving and poverty again. So the process to negotiate with kids and to comfort them is very hard for us. We tried to make it clear to kids that we’ll not let you starving and what we do is try to save the money for the school fees to ensure your educate will never stop. However, some kids seemed very angry and upset so that they even said something like” then just kick four people out of the school, we don’t want change the breakfast” when we explain the reason for them. At that moment I felt so sad and disappointed. Not only for the kids, but also for us, for our volunteers. It seems that our come didn’t bring too many change to them, we are helpless when they are short of money. We didn’t teach them what is kind and sympathy and understanding. And after we leave the center, what can we do to keep going to help them not just the money but something can change their life and give them more to have a better understanding of the world and how can they to face the world. And there still are a lot of problems in the center, and sometimes it just made me feel bad and upset that I feel there is nothing I can do to help to change those into good. But when I stood on the grass in our center to see kids leave to school when the sun rising and they were happy and active and waved to me with big smile, I feel life was becoming full of hope again. I know for just one month here and the international work each day are really not enough to make a big difference for them, and perhaps our come and go soon will hurt children’s heart because when they start to be used to our accompany and suddenly it is the time for us to leave. However, what I’ve got is that we are not the one who give but the one who receive and learn. We got an incredible experience here, it teach us how to love, how to take care of others, how to cherish everything we have, and how to understand the world better. I’m glad I made the choice to come to here, to Kenya, it really give me an excellent opportunity to see the real Africa, and the world that I’m not familiar with. And I also made a lot of goods friends here. we talked about history, countries, culture, and share the happiness and sorrow with each other, the friendship of us can live forever. This is too good to me, even over my expectation for this journey. From the people I know here, I have more courage to face my future and prepare for everything, good or bad. I’m not scared of the future anymore and I'm more clear about the way I’ll choose in my future.
Justin and his partner Eliza volunteered at Otra Cosa Network's Skate Ramp project in October and November 2013. This is what Justin had to say about his time there:
(scroll down to see their video of the project!)
An incredible amount of amazing moments have transpired in our time at the Skate Ramp Project in El Cerrito de la Virgen. Not fully confident with my Spanish, paired with weeks of curiosity and excitement of what this month would bring, I was somewhat apprehensive as I strolled into my first day on the job. My fears subsided almost immediately as the kids began to filter in to the dusty plot of land where we waited for them on the ramp. I was greeted by each kid with a hand slap-pound as they checked out my skateboard and immediately asked for their skates. Smiles on all their faces and the phrase "un skate" echoing throughout I felt a sort of pride with the passion each child seemed to have for skateboarding.
Our kids vary from ages 2-17 and the personalities are equally varying. However, what differs in personality and age binds us together with a love of the sport and a huge sense of community.
Unlike most skate parks in America, there are tons of girls who come to the ramp every day, some who love to skateboard and some who play with the school supplies and Legos. There's certainly something for everyone at the ramp, and there's no question that this program is being fully utilized and appreciated by the entire community. It's a rarity that we see anyone’s parents, but it seems that from 3-6pm Monday through Friday, there is a community-wide understanding that the kids are in good hands at the ramp. Despite my inability to understand too much of what the kids say in Spanish, I quickly discovered who was related to whom. Within seconds of hearing a cry, a sibling or cousin appears to wipe away the (constant) snot, (reluctant) tears and (sometimes) blood. Needless to say, these kids are outrageously brave, strong and resilient.
I've been volunteering my time for 2 weeks now and have established a great connection with the kids - the little ones are no longer shy with me and the others come to me for help and to try to use their most sad/convincing voice to persuade me to let them borrow my skateboard. Sharing my skateboard or trying my best to show them a trick or two, everything is all laughs and skateboarding, which is the most rewarding thing I can possibly think of.
Skateboarding has been my hobby for over a decade and has become a huge part of my social life. In my youth, this hobby kept me out of trouble in a small town where I didn't have much to do when I wasn't skating. I'm psyched to see that the same amount of enthusiasm is present for skateboarding in a community where this hobby could, and is, making a world of difference in these kids’ everyday lives. I can relate to having nowhere to go and nothing to do after school, and I have a great sense of pride in being able to help provide a fun and healthy environment each day for the kids of El Cerrito de la Virgen.
While I'm here I want to make as big of a difference as I can. I want to provide something that will last, stand the test of time for these kids, because they deserve it. So, we signed up for the Pub Quiz this past Wednesday to raise money for resurfacing the ramp (which badly needs it). I'm not talking about another wood resurfacing but procuring metal, so the ramp will be in great shape for the next decade. That to me is the best possible way to leave a lasting impression, and to ensure the continuity of this specific project, which is of the utmost importance in El Cerrito de la Virgen.
The skate ramp project has a home in El Cerrito.
Check out this video of Justin and Eliza's time at the Skate Ramp project:
In the wake of Typhoon Haiyan slamming into the Philippines, relief organizations are calling on people to donate funds and manpower to their efforts. Want to donate to a group not listed below? CharityNavigator.org rates organizations based on their financial health, accountability and transparency.
HOW YOU CAN HELP
• UNICEF staff in the Philippines is being repositioned to provide emergency aid and the organization is gearing up to deliver supplies to children and their families. Donations can be made online or by texting RELIEF to 864233 to donate $10 from US mobiles.
• CARE teams are on the ground in the Philippines and the organization plans to provide emergency relief to thousands of families. Donations can be made online or by calling 1-800-521-CARE within the U.S. or +1-404-681-2552.
• World Vision is mobilizing nearly 500 staff around the country to respond to the disaster. Donations are accepted online and the organization also lets you sponsor a child in the Philippines.
• The American Red Cross has volunteers spread throughout the region and accepts donations online. You can also mail a check to your local American Red Cross chapter designating Philippines Typhoons and Flood in the memo line.
• The U.N. World Food Programme is urging Americans to make donations to support its emergency food relief after Typhoon Haiyan. You can donate online or by texting the word AID to 27722 to donate $10.
• Save the Children is mounting disaster relief efforts to help children and families in the area. Donations can be made online or by texting DONATE to 20222.
• AmeriCares is deploying medical aid and a relief team to Philippines, and says an emergency shipment with enough medical aid for 20,000 survivors is already on its way.
• The Philippine Red Cross has deployed staff and volunteers across the region. You can easily make a donation through organization's website.
• Doctors Without Borders has had emergency teams in Cebu since Nov. 9.
• To donate to the Salvation Army's Typhoon Haiyan relief efforts, visit its website or text TYPHOON to 80888 to donate $10 and reply YES to confirm your donation. The organization uses 100% of all disaster donations in support of disaster relief.
• The International Rescue Committee (IRC) has sent an emergency response team to assist with safe water, hygiene and sanitation needs, with additional aid to follow. Donations can be made online or by calling +1 855 9RESCUE.
• The International Medical Corps is on the ground coordinating with their partners in the Philippines to distribute and provide medical aid. Donations can be made online or by calling1-800-481-4462.
• Mercy Corps responders are working with local partners to provide food, water and shelter. Donations can be made online.
• Handicap International supports people with disabilities and vulnerable populations in situations of poverty, conflict and disaster. The group has been working in the Philippines since 1985 and is preparing emergency aid for the hard-hit city of Tacloban. Donations can be made online.
• Looking for someone in the Philippines area that is in your family or a friend? Google has launched a person finder for the storm, also known as Yolanda in the Philippines, where you can try and find out someone's whereabouts or enter your own information.
Young Pioneers Tours are also taking volunteers - to volutneer your manpower contact:
email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org
For just $14.95 you can light up a community. Why not take some Luci lights with you to the project you are going to volunteer at!
Light can help in so many ways...
Workforce: Increases productivity and promotes job-creation
Education: Lengthens study time and improves conditions
Health & Safety: Reduces incidents of pulmonary diseases, kerosene burns and risk of gender based violence
Social: Increases community relations and reduces community violence
Environmental: Decreases CO2 emissions which damage the environment
Economy: Saves money ordinarily spent on kerosene which in turn stimulates the economy
Charge time of 8 hours yields a minimum of 6-12 hours of light
Luci charges under direct sunlight and even under incandescent light
Two brightness levels to conserve battery life
Flashing-light setting for emergency situations
Delivers up to 80 lumens providing 15 sq ft of light
Minimum lifespan of 2 years
Luci was created to empower the developing world through solar power, providing greater equity to those without access to electricity. The true promise of solar-powered lighting as a solution to energy poverty lies in the opportunities Luci will create for individuals and their communities.
BUY LUCI LIGHTS HERE
Being busy is often a good thing but the last few months have been taking a toll on all at EHN. We are only in Sept and have already passed 80 volunteers placed in Nepal. Run a successful medical trek and have started plans to register in the UK as a charity.
But my belief is we should only look to the past to learn from our mistakes and make sure they dont happen again.
So now we look toward 2014, more projects, more volunteers and the introduction of new ideas.
More details will follow soon.
The children of Cambodia need your help to access the education and resources they need to survive in a challenging time.
Today’s Cambodia is still recovering from the brutal Khmer Rouge regime of the seventies and the ensuing Vietnamese occupation. This devastating era left many Cambodians orphaned or widowed. The country faced numerous interlinked problems such as famine, food shortage, polluted drinking water, illiteracy, unemployment, psychological trauma and extreme poverty.
These problems have been very hard to tackle, since the Khmer Rouge genocide systematically targeted teachers, doctors and other educated Cambodians who could have otherwise assisted in rebuilding the country. Although progress has been made, it will probably take a few generations before these problems are solved. In the meantime, Cambodia continues to rely on support from abroad and local nonprofit initiatives, such as the Life and Hope of Cambodian Children Organization (LHCCO).
Many Cambodian children, especially those living in rural areas, have little or no access to proper education. Without access to education the children cannot learn to read or write, and are unlikely to learn the skills necessary to find work. Without literacy skills those children will remain in the dark about their own country’s cultural, political and environmental issues, and will know nothing about national or international news. They are likely to remain in poverty and be vulnerable to violence, drugs and human rights abuses. Sex trafficking in women and children is a major concern to the Cambodian Government.
The Life and Hope of Cambodian Children Organization (LHCCO) is a Cambodian non-governmental, non-profit organization. It was developed to try to give hope to Cambodian’s poorest and most vulnerable children. We believe that a better life starts with education and community. We provide access to free education in a safe environment to improve the literacy of Cambodian children and adults. We are based in Siem Reap and we help out in rural villages as well. We receive no government funding, but rely on support from abroad through volunteering and donations.
The Life and Hope of Cambodian Children Organisation (LHCCO) was established by a Cambodian Buddhist monk, Venerable Yorn Chea. Yorn had to endure his own hardships growing up in poverty when his father died under the Khmer Rouge regime. Having later managed to access education and Buddhist teachings and learn English, Yorn began to teach Siem Reap’s poorest children. He started with just a few benches, one map and one whiteboard, in his hut in Angkor Sa Pagoda. Six boys came to the pagoda to live and study. Many more started attending the classes. They survived on donations and money received from offering prayers to the town people.
We are looking for funders, volunteers, NGO s , partners to join our Malawi Recycle Project (Recycle) MALAWI all well wishers welcome to lend us their support. Recycle 4 Africa is a registered NGO Company which was founded by a group of likeminded woman who s passion is to up lift woman and the disabled from poverty. Who s aim is to raise funds for the building of orphanages and schools in underprivelaged areas in Malawi
My name is Carlos Roure, and I am 17. I am from Spain. Next year I will finish highschool and I should start thinking to which university I will go (because I shall study...and then work for 40 years...and so on).
Well, i can't really tell who I am. I think only little people can. But I want to get to know myself, that is why I want to travel away from eastern society, to become a stranger to later be able to find myself, instead of deciding what I will do the next four years without having really been able to think about what I would like to do with my life.
First I thought about travelling on my own as a backpacker, but I have no experience on beeing independent and I think it would be a better idea to start with something easier. I didn't wanted to spend much money, so I thought about volunteering (not only because of that, but because i love to help people and getting in contact with persons with different world perceptions), but until now internet research hasn't satisfied my expectations (most organizations are too expensive and provide rather a tourist trip than a volunteering opportunity).
I just registered here because i thought WWH could help me to find answers. It is the possibility of getting in contact with experienced volunteers/ travelers that I am looking for.
I am pretty lost and would appreciate a lot any advice anyone could give me, so feel free to comment or send me a message.
Well I have been at the school 3 weeks and only have one remaining! I know that saying goodbye next week will be one of the hardest things ever.
When I arrived at the school 3 weeks ago I was wanting to go straight back home, this was the first time I have done anything like this and I chose to do it alone. The teachers and Barnabas the director made me feel very welcome and cheered me up as they knew I was suffering from homesickness. After a couple of days I was fine and really enjoying my time here. I have been in lessons running the sports activities and just playing with the kids during break and playtimes.
The school is fantastic the work they do for the children is unbelievable. They never stop trying to improve the school and I hope I can help them in achieving the new school they are all dreaming of which will improve the future of the children. I would highly reconmend the school to anyone who wants to do work anywhere in africa or who wants to help with the children. They have a feeding program and a medical program also, so this organisation is not just after volunteers who want to be teachers, social workers or any other profession.
They are also understanding that you are there to give your time but they also give you opportunities to visit safaris's local markets and other touristic events. I have been to Lake Navasha and seen so many different animals, a giraffe center, elephant orphanage, bomas of Kenya and local markets.
This has been an amazing experience and its not over yet! I cant wait to have my final week in the school and teach them a few more nursery rhymes and games which the kids love. Anything that you do at this school they are so greatful for no matter how big or small.
GET YOURSELF TO HAVILLA
This is a new four month TEFL program, which comes completely free of charge.
Your program will begin with a four week training course. This will entail your teacher training (TEFL) as well as significant aspects of cultural, political and national etiquette norms and values.
Accommodation and food will be provided in our Singburi Eco-House. Your course will take place at our English center, with a trained expert. We will even provide you with a small amount of pocket money to live off!
The final three months of this four month program, will be completed with teacher training in a school, where you will put all your newly acquired skills into practice, as you learn how to be a real life teacher.
After this point, you will have all that is required to be a full time teacher. The Green Lion will assist you in finding a full-time job in Thailand. If requested a English Institute certified certificate can be provided for a fee of 200 Euros.
Culturally speaking, teachers command a large amount of respect within Thai society. The relationship with fellow teachers and students often spreads it's wings outside of school hours. A former participant had this to say about teaching in Thailand
"I was amazed at the extent to which schools in Thailand resemble a family unit. It is so unlike Europe, where outside of standard school hours people are just individuals.
My fellow teachers invited me out for meals, constantly brought me snacks during the day and in the beginning would call me every single night to see how i was settling in. I would advise anybody looking for a cultural experience to teach in Thailand. It reflects the friendliness, warmth of harmony of the people and culture alike."
registration fee required AUD $250
Programs Cost $0.00
As mentioned before, the Nigerian population is facing many infrastructural problem, for example limited access to health care. The poor quality health structures are concentrated in the urban areas, leaving the rural population without any medical assistance, all without medical coverage. There is a lack of doctors’prescriptions thereby limiting access to life-saving drugs, and thus increasing the possibility of the majority rushing to local chemist stores without qualified pharmacists, unqualified nurses, self-medications, and the risk of long exposure to infections and probability of death.
Avdsabn began the construction of this hospital in order to improve the whole population’s access to basic medical assistance, guaranteeing free medical service, providing necessary/original drugs to all because:
Most of the health infrastructures are located in the cities: the inhabitants of the villages are forced to travel from 20 to 25Km, on foot or by motorcycles and many families are not able to pay the cost of transportation and roads are not paved.
In addition to the lack of health coverage or high costs there is very limited accessibility to hospitals and the majority of the population cannot afford the cost. This forces them to buy drugs from local chemists without a doctor’s prescription. In this context, even easily curable diseases become serious pathologies.
“Bottom-Up” solutions in Mirale, Southern Blantyre
Originally posted on March 15, 2013 on www.theethicalvolunteer.com/blog
See accompanying short documentary Food is Part of the Education
It’s rainy season here in Southern Malawi, which means it’s hunger season. The fruits of last year’s harvest are long gone while all around the hills of Mirale maize grows green, tall and tantalisingly just out of reach. It is a dangerous time of year. Those weakened by hunger are more susceptible to the diseases that flourish with the season and families struggle to carry their most vulnerable through these final few weeks of rains before harvest time rolls around once again. School attendance fluctuates; those that are well enough to walk to school may have their paths blocked by flash flood rivers or might be required to help their families repair rain-damaged homes.
Up until last year, the children of Chimwabvi village had one more challenge to face; the closest primary school was located 3km along a treacherous stretch of road (so dangerous that, in a country where road deaths equal deaths by Malaria, the police have a special road block for this particular stretch, attempting to improve its dismal safety record). The community, however, decided to try to do something to keep their children safe and applied to the government for funding to build a school within their village. Aware of the constraints on government resources, the community decided to prove their commitment to the project by building the bricks that would be needed for the facility out of the local soil. The government were indeed impressed by this initiative but unfortunately, until now, have been unable to supply any funding. The community, however, decided to go ahead with the school regardless of funding. Again, using local resources, they built a temporary classroom from blue gum timber poles and dried grass. Not much use in the rainy season, but an adequate shelter from the sun none-the-less. The school opened in September 2012 with 200 students. With little funding available, the community themselves have pooled together to contribute towards a salary for schools’ teachers. The contribution does not reach a liveable wage for the volunteer teachers, but at least it’s something.
While the government were unable to provide funding, the efforts of the community did not go unnoticed. Local business, Fisherman’s Rest, who are actively involved in community development, were impressed by this local initiative. So impressed in fact, that they offered to help the school by introducing a program to give each pupil one nutritious meal every day. The reasoning behind such an initiative is simple: feeding a child one solid meal per day reduces hunger and susceptibility to disease while encouraging higher school attendance. The children are not only healthier and therefore better able to apply themselves to their learning, but parents now have one less mouth to feed each morning. More learning, less sicknesses, less strain on limited family resources. Fisherman’s Rest provided the funding to buy the food and worked alongside the community to develop the program.
There are many arguments regarding aid and the creation of a dependency culture. The argument, in a nut shell, is that handing out aid reduces the recipients impetus to become self-sufficient. Fisherman’s Rest is concerned with this possible negative effect of fund giving and so initially provided the bare minimum needed to support the program. In response, the local community set up committees to oversee the construction of a temporary kitchen and the cooking and distribution of the food at the school. It would seem that this gift of aid empowered, rather than disincentivised, the local community. It is now two months into the feeding program and attendance at school has increased by twenty five percent. And that’s during the rainy season, a time when traditionally attendance would be expected to fall, not soar.
The community of Chimwabvi are responding to their own particular needs with initiative and enthusiasm. Their story, while not unfamiliar, is unique to them. It is by their own hard work that the standard of living for the youth in their area is improving; it is their own effort that may result in the next generation being better equipped to deal with the challenges of life in Southern Malawi. And those challenges will keep coming. As of yet, Chimwabvi operate out of temporary classrooms while in a neighbouring village, a school that introduced meals for its pupils now faces the disturbing problem that the children are so motivated to reach school that they will cross rivers engorged by heavy rains to reach their daily meal, putting their lives at risk every time the rain falls.
The challenges will continue, but by using their own skills, initiative and hard work to tackle their unique set of problems, the people of Chimwabvi may well be the instrument of their own development.
The Academic girls’ sports team was established in thoughts, in December 2012 by amateur football coach in Muhanga - South Province (Rwanda).
Since January 2013, me M.HIRWA Henriette (founder) begun to interest young girls to play football and coaching local academic girls during their spare time in p.m .
Our objective is to provide sport training (football this time), encourage participation in a wide range of sports activities appropriate to their age, ability, disability and stage of development.