Volunteer Feedback

woman with kidsKhaya Volunteer Projects has sent quite a lot of volunteers over the last years to take part in the projects held by Izizwe projects in Walmer Location. I, Siphokazi (intern at Khaya), sat down with a few of the volunteers and asked them, what was the experience like? And what made them decide to volunteer with Khaya? This is what they had to say!

As a collective they made it crystal-clear to me that for them volunteering is the best thing they could ever have done with their holiday or time to travel, and would do it every day if they could because there’s nothing more heartwarming that helping those who need help. “Being able to help other people, gave me a different perspective of the world” said Rick (from Holland). For most of the volunteers, this experience is life-changing. They all feel needed and they can be able to make a difference in this world.

"I am not self-centered anymore about my life; I have learned to focus on changing or bettering other lives” Dick (from Holland) explained. This shows how small things such as helping at a soup kitchen or helping in a local clinic can change someone’s life or the way they view life.

Africa is one of the poorest continents in the world and that is why most of the volunteers I spoke to choose to volunteer here, and they chose Izizwe projects because they heard about it and read about their versatile and inspiring projects and it’s cost effective. Volunteering is a responsibility and you need to be patient especially if you in a foreign country, it can be challenging too because of the native language. However, you learn to communicate in many different ways and about different cultures and customs.

The volunteers I spoke to are so blessed to be able to be in Africa and to help others; it gives them a sense of achievement and purpose. It’s also heart breaking to see a lot of suffering and poverty and it made most of them stop complaining about having a ‘small room’ and to rather appreciate things they otherwise maybe would be unhappy about. The time of volunteering is for most of them a very defining moment in their lives. They do this with an open heart and mind, hence there’s a lot of positivity coming out of such an experience for all involved. Giving back is a great way to connect with any community and to learn about life in general.

In conclusion the volunteers gave us very inspiring feedback on how it’s like for them to help others. One of the biggest messages I have gathered in these interviews is that; ‘volunteering is ultimately about helping others and having an impact on people’s wellbeing’.

If you haven’t tried volunteering abroad I can recommend trying it and seeing for yourself what such an experience will not only offer the people you will be working with but most of all what it can give you.

By: Siphokazi Mtengwana


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