Tanzanian Students Experience First-Hand the Impact of Short-Term Volunteers
Can one or two weeks on a service program truly make a difference to people in need? Our answer is yes! Short-term volunteers bring a long-term impact to the communities that we serve, and we have hundreds of alumni stories to illustrate this point. Perhaps, even more poignant are stories shared by our international staff, who offer another perspective on the impact volunteers can make in their communities. It is especially inspiring when the students we served reunite with us in service. Anna Mwenda, our Clinic Manager in Ipalamwa, reflects on the value of short-term volunteers and adds a unique observation about the contribution made by two young ladies, Lulu and Aneth. First introduced to Global Volunteers as young students in Pommern, Tanzania, they joined us in Ipalamwa over school break to give back to their country and its young people through service. Read more below.
Anna: “The students are from Mbeya – a city in southwest Tanzania, located seven hours out of Ipalamwa. Lulu and Aneth were studying in Pommern when Global Volunteers was serving there, and through that volunteer support, they were able to improve their English language skills and gain access to higher education. As advanced secondary school students, they felt inspired to replicate that giving through service in the community of Ipalamwa. It was a great opportunity for us to have them in our village. We had a good time together, helping each other to continue to serve their country and specifically the people in Ipalamwa community.“
“There is always in my mind to help children, as short-term volunteers helped me and my community in the past.”Aneth, volunteer from Pommern, Tanzania
Talking about Lulu’s and Aneth’s contribution to the team of volunteers, Anna says: “Lulu and Aneth proved to be of high value while serving in Ipalamwa. Their sense of care and their will to impact the community there was immeasurable. Both students helped teach at the English camp, and enjoyed their time with the children and the volunteers to the fullest. Children improved a lot during the time that the girls served there. They reviewed colors and numbers, as children were getting confused to pronounce numbers between 15 and 50. The kids also started identifying different mathematical signs like plus, minus, multiplication and division. Most of them understood and started drawing problems in the sand.”
Understanding the high importance of nutrition and hygiene in the lives of children in Ipalamwa, Tanzania, Lulu and Aneth took the lead, as Anna describes: “Even more Lulu and Aneth ensured that the children participating in the English camp were getting sufficient nutrition by helping provide nutritious porridge to the children for lunch. Furthermore, they found an innovative and fun way to demonstrate effective hand washing with soap and water using music. They taught and reviewed daily a hand washing song to the tune of Lacoocaracha.”
“Helping others is my passion. You never know how a simple act of kindness may influence another person. Our acts may have more meaning than we may realize.”Lulu, volunteer from Pommern, Tanzania
Anna continued: “Short-term volunteers can have a direct and indirect impact in the lives of the people in the communities that we serve. First they can help on a variety of different projects priority to the communities, and also volunteers teach important lessons indirectly, like showing compassion, finding greatness, and taking responsibility to make this world a better place. Growing up having short-term volunteers in their community helped the girls dream bigger, pursue a career, and help people around them. Both Lulu and Aneth enjoy working with children, and they dream of studying to become doctors, in order to help people, especially mothers and children in their region and generally in Tanzania. Lulu and Aneth promised to be back after they complete their studies, and I can’t wait to see what these beautiful ladies will become.”
“Thank you once again Global Volunteers for everything that your doing to serve the community of Ipalamwa. Thanks for bringing more volunteers every month, and for all great plans you have for this community. I really appreciate everything that your doing. Thank you.”Anna Mwenda, Clinic Manager
Global Volunteers enables people of all ages fulfill their volunteer goals through worldwide programs. Learn more about our volunteer service program in Tanzania and Chat Online with one of our program experts to get started today!
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