So you have finished school and are about to go to college or university or to work. However, you want and need a break and to think about some important decisions that you need to make. I know I did. Why not consider volunteering abroad in one of many countries through one of various programs available. This will enable you to not only experience a different way of life but also broaden your own experiences by helping others less fortunate than yourself. I can tell you that this is a fact.
Fiji like many countries, really needs the services of people to do many jobs in the community. These can range from teaching English, coaching in sports, participating in community building programs and in farming activities, for example. Not only are you contributing to the growth of the village and Fiji, but also you are also learning about a very different way of life, as you actually live and work in the village. You cook with the villagers, do many of their day to day activities, and become a part of this tribal community. This is a real eye opener as many people are discovering, including me. Indeed, it is humbling to realise that many of us have so much and that many others have so little.
These programs are not just altruistic but indeed provide the opportunities to explore the islands of Fiji and to see the absolute beauty of these South Pacific islands, and the friendliness of the Fijians. Most programs organise these excursions to enable you to appreciate the islands. You also get to meet other volunteers and share stories and experiences.
I recently did a three month volunteer program in Fiji – and did not want to come home. I fell in love with ”my” little class, and was able to assist in not just their English language development but also in their understanding of western ways. Indeed, it was a reciprocal arrangement as I also learned more about them, and also about “Fiji time”! Look when things happen, they happen. Not much use stressing about time and deadlines – Fijians will get to it –‘eventually’.
Most programs are really well organised and include your accommodation in a village, your orientation with cultural ways different to yours, as well as ensuring that you have very suitable back up. They also organise many trips for you to explore other areas. Your village will embrace you as one of their own, and that is such a great thing. A family away from family.
There are many countries where you can volunteer and that do require your help. I think you will be amazed and how much they appreciate your efforts. You will also be shocked at the impact that this has on you as a person and how it helps redefine your attitudes, beliefs, and aspirations. Deep as that all is, it is tremendous fun and a great time. Yes the beaches are awesome, the snorkelling excellent, the food fresh and plentiful.
So if Prince Harry and Prince William can do it, why can’t you? Bula!
Photo by colinspics on Flickr