Spring reflections from Canadian volunteers

Posted by on May 21, 2013 in Volunteer Reflections | 0 comments

Currently there are 4 of us; Tanner, Morgan, Sierra, and Adam, Canadian volunteers helping with the Global Pathways School’s summer Camp! There are roughly 150 children attending the program. In a typical day we seperate into different classes and each help with an activity. The camp starts +at 9 and the children participate in four classes a day on a rotating schedule of eight classes. Some of the classes are; computers, arts and crafts, dance, science, writing, karate, and indoor games (too hot for outdoor!).

The children are very enthusiastic and always want to participate! They call us by our first names and then add mam or sir, saying our names so quickly if you’re not paying attention you are sure to miss it.

We brought over a bunch of arts and craft supplies; stickers, glue, pipe cleaners, jewels, etc. The children have been making special occasion cards with them. They LOVE the stickers! +Tuesday we were making thank you cards and it was very quickly evident that not only were they quite good at spelling but they were more interested in writing love cards to us volunteers than Thank You cards to the donors. We have a stack of thank you/I love you cards at the house that are full of stickers!

Another class that we often help in is dance. The teacher asked us if we knew any western dances; we could think of a few and decided the most appropriate ones were the chicken dance and the Macerana! We must confess their favourite part of dance class is the free dance. This is when we put the iPod on and play a few games of freeze dance.

On +Wednesday, Sunbeam, the headmaster of the school and our go to person, took us to visit the settlement. There are 6 within the area that the children bus in from. The experience was overwhelming. Sunbeam not only knows all the children that attend the school but she knows all the people on the settlement and their stories. We saw a few of the children that are participating in the summer camp. One boy walked around with us and took us to see his home. When we had finished the tour of his 15 square foot home where he and his 2 siblings and parents live, he looked up at us and asked us if we liked his home. When we replied saying we did he was thrilled and told us how much he loved his home. It was heartwarming and eye opening at the same time. He then informed us of his signing abilities and performed a song for us. When we got into the car to head back to the guest house words such as; perspective shattering, humbling, unforgettable were used to describe what we had just been a part of.

Since the camp runs till +noon we then have the after +noon to entertain ourselves. The teachers at the school are all so helpful and friendly! We rotate through different activities allowing us to meet all the children and teachers! Last +Thursday there was a 50% off clothing sale in Coimbatore that a few of the teachers had been anticipating. We were lucky enough to be able to tag along! We bused into town where we then jumped in a Rickshaw to the store, shopped, walked to another store, shopped, and then taxied home. The experience was exciting and so much fun!

Being at GPS is not only a privilege because you get to experience a different culture and be fully immured in it but most importantly you get to be a part of a community. A community that supports each other, works together, and embraces all opportunities.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.