Our volunteer from the USA, Adriana, leaves us this week after 2 months volunteering at one of Voluntario Global’s projects working with children. We decided to visit her at the project in her final few days to talk with her and reflect on her time volunteering.
For Adriana, the highlight of the volunteer journey has been meeting and bonding with the kids. Volunteering five days a week for 8 weeks, she has really connected with the children at her project and has become very close with them. She has loved learning about the culture here in Buenos Aires through volunteering and admires how much time everyone spends outdoors. Dancing, ball games and origami- Adriana recommends everyone spends some time volunteering with children!
Volunteering with children is very rewarding, giving volunteers the opportunity to help children and teach them new skills. Reflecting on how Adriana’s work has benefitted the children she has met, she told us how she taught them more about the wider-world - about where she was from and all the different countries where other volunteers lived. Adriana also taught the kids English and gave them the chance to practise with a native speaker. Most importantly, however, Adriana felt that she had offered the children a new friend and someone that they could trust.
Volunteering also brings many benefits to the volunteer, for example Adriana told us that her experience with Voluntario Global has given her perspective. She thinks differently about what we need to be happy and the most important things in life.
Finally, Adriana left us with some advice for others wanting to volunteer with children. She told us “the kids are awesome, and be prepared for lots of playing”. She advised that volunteers go into these projects with a very open mind and a positive perspective, prepared for a new culture and a different way of doing things. She also recommended that volunteers put as much time as possible into developing their Spanish to improve their bond with the kids. Adriana summarised “all you need is love and patience”.