Have you ever wonder what would it be like to volunteer in Vietnam? Keith, a 4-time Vietnam volunteer describes a typical day volunteering in Hanoi.
“I’m not sure what part of my day is most enjoyable.”
It could be my solo run around Hoan Kiem at the break of dawn. Just me along with hundreds of other seniors moving and bending our bodies in robotic, creative or humorous ways. I love to see the badminton duals, no net necessary, just a string.
Then too, I enjoy our three daily taxi rides with my fellow volunteer teammates – Tom and Sara – where we share honest self-disclosure. Nothing is taboo – Sara’s housing history in the East Bay, Tom’s interest in the daily obits and my personal disdain for beta blockers.
There is great enjoyment in our lunches as well. Today’s feast included two lettuce salads (Tom first inspected the kitchen), pizza, BBQ ribs, and spaghetti. As I always say, “when in Rome…..”
Then there is the volunteer effort we are here to provide. Over and over I recite, “please lie down on your stomach and put your face here.” And eventually I recognize the words coming back to me from my earnest students. Ahhhh, the sweet sound of success. See, when you volunteer at Blind-Link, you teach basic conversational English skills to young, visually impaired adults who are in training for professional massage therapy careers.
Nothing too complicated here. Smile, make friends, practice patience and tomorrow do it all over again. It was a very enjoyable day!
Just like Keith, you can volunteer in Vietnam and teach conversational English at Blind-Link, at a university, at a school, or at development research center. Either way, you can have a peaceful day serving others and enjoying a beautiful country and an amazing people.