"I have great respect for Global Volunteers' philosophy and policies. With each trip, I'm touched and humbled by the possibility of helping a child or young adult. Global Volunteers enables me to not just be a passive world traveler but to be an active participant, a "citizen diplomat."
~Norina Vaira, volunteer on 19 teams
We know that as meaningful as your service work is in the host community, it's the person-to-person connections that live on in your heart. For that reason, we especially value volunteers' reflections and first-person stories that tell of the new friendships, understandings, and perspectives. These first-person stories and quotes testify to the life-enhancing value of genuine community service. To view volunteer videos, enjoy our YouTube Channel. Read volunteers' accounts from the field on our Country Blogs (left).
“It’s kind of a cliché, but I just gain so much more than I give. Volunteering in this ways gives you insight into the culture in a way you could never get as a tourist. You live with the people, you go to their homes and mingle with teachers. Your realize you have something in common with the people you’re working with. It really is waging peace through justice worldwide.”
~Joan McGuinness, 10-time Global Volunteer
I'll Remember You Forever - Teaching English
“Why do I volunteer? Because I want to share skills, learn from others and experience the joy of serving people from many different cultures throughout the world. As a lifelong learner, I have been either a student, a teacher or both my entire life. Since I retired from active employment several years ago, I have enjoyed the freedom to not only continue my roles as student and teacher but also to expand them in service to others.
As Ram Dass and Paul Gorman state in their book, How Can I Help?, service is a '…journey, a vehicle through which we reach a deeper understanding of life.' By listening more, judging less and being ready to respond to the needs of others, I continue this life journey, always with the hope that even though I am American by birth, I am – more importantly – a member of a world community, a community in which each of us can contribute our talents for the benefit of others.
What does volunteering mean to me? While I listen to the increasingly belligerent tones among many government leaders in this world, I maintain the hope that we volunteers can help change the world by remembering that for every difference that makes us unique, there is a common thread that connects us.
~Gloria Gibbs, 10-time Global Volunteer