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Surgical Nurse Exchanges Scrubs for Shovels   (published in Tanzania)

February 14, 2013 by   Comments(0)

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 Delphine is pictured above in the center wearing a black tank top, is sifting sand.

As a professional nurse, Delphine Loquen (24) is accustomed to sharing her time and skill with people who are suffering or in need. Her strong sense of compassion has led her to volunteer in underdeveloped countries like Nepal and most recently Tanzania.

In early January, she began a two month volunteering placement with Projects Abroad. Delphine was assigned to a local hospital in Arusha for 1 month and later joined the Water & Sanitation Project for 2 weeks.

“I love volunteering because I like to be useful and helpful. I also love discovering new cultures and visiting other countries.”

The Water & Sanitation Project is located in the remote Maasai village of Endulen, about 3 hours from the city of Arusha. The village is inside the Ngorongor Conservation Area, a protected national park and popular tourist destination where thousands of African wildlife live alongside Maasai people.

Delphine spent her time digging, shoveling, sifting sand, and surveying the land as the professional engineers prepared to lay the foundation and piping for the water pump and container. The water system will provide clean and safe drinking water to approximately 15,000 people living in the area including a primary school. Currently, the women and children are required to take long walks to a nearby stream to fetch water with buckets. The water is then used for cooking, bathing, and cleaning, however, it is shared with the wildlife, cattle and other domestic animals. In previous years, there were five rivers in the area, but climate change and environmental factors have reduced that number to two.

When they weren’t working, the volunteers spent time going on safaris and exploring the ...

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Surgical Nurse Exchanges Scrubs for Shovels
Surgical Nurse Exchanges Scrubs for Shovels

Aangekomen!!   (published in Thailand)

February 14, 2013 by   Comments(13)

Hoi allemaal,

Hier even een korte blog van mij om de eerste dingen kwijt te kunnen. Ik ga morgen naar een internetcafe om daar wat te kunnen melden aan jullie. Dit is de laptop van mijn huisgenoot, Alisa, die ook hier vrijwilligerswerk doet. De tijden die ik noem zullen niet helemaal overeen komen met jullie tijden want elke keer terug tellen is niet ideaal. Afgelopen dinsdag zijn we met een aantal naar schiphol gegaan om daar afscheid te nemen, ik was erg blij met de mensen die mee waren!! =) Alles daarna is eigenlijk heel snel gegaan, mijn eerste vlucht ging prima. Hij duurde 10,5 uur en in de stoel naast mij zat niemand dus had lekker net wat meer beenruimte. Helaas zat ik drie rijen achter de babyplaatsen waardoor slapen niet helemaal is gelukt, 3 uur maximaal. Aan eten en drinken was zeker geen gebrek en met series als CSI en Gooische Vrouwen en fims als De Marathon kom je de tijd goed door! Nadat ik was geland had ik vervolgens nog 1,5 uur voordat de boarding zou beginnen van mijn doorvlucht. Hierdoor had ik lichtelijke stress en ben ik naar een informatie balie gegaan om zo snel mogelijk op de plaats van bestemming te komen. Ik moet zeggen dat alles echt super goed aangegeven stond! Die vlucht had helaas een vertraging van een half uurtje. Het personeel in het vliegtuig had vooral haast, je moest heel snel je lunch opeten (die niet lekker was dus ik was snel klaar..) en ze rende alleen maar heen en weer door het vliegtuig. Een hoop turbulentie en tijdens het opstijgen werd ik ongeveer weggeschoten, maar ook hier weer veilig aan land gekomen! En op dat moment breekt al het zweet je uit, want ht is warm hier als jullie het nog niet wisten.. Ik ga proberen dit niet elke dag te benoemen maar we zitten met 40 graden. Nadat  ik vrij snel mijn backpack tas ...

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Heat, work, play, food   (published in Cambodia)

February 14, 2013 by   Comments(1)

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Phew - what a week! It's getting hotter and more humid here (last count 35 degrees and 88% humidity) but I seem to be getting busier and busier. Weekends are no longer chill time but activity time after spending all of the week in the city!

Rather shockingly, my first week working for Building Community Voices is nearly over. It's been very strange to have a relatively more structured timetable but it has also been nice to relax and chill out a bit more and not travel around the country every week.

My NGO, Building Community Voices, aims to provide capacity development to support community advocacy activities so that community members can start their own action against problems they routinely face. A lot of this involves land loss - somebody deciding that the land people have lived on for years and years is actually theirs and kicking everybody off. There is often no time to get belongings together or move bits of their homes to new locations so many have to start completely a-fresh. So far, I have mainly been reading various documents to get up to date with the information. Some facts are crazy - e.g. Only 26.4% of Cambodians have access to electricity! I'm now writing a 50 page leadership manual for the leaders in the provinces so expect me to be pretty clued up on leadership by the time I get back!

I have also been to some meetings with other NGOs working in the area - these are an interesting mix of English and Khmer and so it can be quite hard to pay attention! Last week I went to the NGO forum on Cambodia quarterly members meeting. This was quite a big half-day conference so I had headphones piping through a translation of the speeches. It was focused on climate change which has a great effect on a large proportion of Cambodians - many who ...

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Heat, work, play, food
Heat, work, play, food

The Samoan way of life ✿   (published in Samoa)

February 14, 2013 by   Comments(0)

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Talofa from Samoa!

Today I've been in Samoa for 10 days, and I just got off work at the Loto Taumafai School, which is a school for disabled children of all kids really. We have kids with Down syndrome, Deaf children, slowlearners and all kinds really. Even tho the work is a bit unstructered and there isn't much to do on some days, the kids really make me feel thankfull to be here, cause I know how excited they are to have me here and i really love being around them - Ive already made myself a little posse at the school :) Most of the children only speaks in Samoan or/and samoan sign language, so sometimes the communication is a bit difficult but i think we're doing really great for know and next monday i'll start at teachers afternoon sign language class - so hopefully we won't have any problems in the future!

Also Im almost use to the climate changes and the samoan mentality - which is veeeery different from the danish one. In Samoa they never want to rush things, they're almost always late and u can always wait till tomorrow. That is very hard getting use to with an ADHD trip and the excitement of coming to a new country. The good thing is that you always have the other volunteers to hang out with in the evenings and weekends when things get to slow! For eksampel; This weekend I rented a car with three other volunteers Evan, Kellie and Sandra and we explored the Upolo Island all weekend with nothing but a car, a map and a few tala's - and we really found some hidden treasures here! No wonder Robert Louis Stevenson called it 'Treasure Island' .... We spend the evenings laying on the beach watching the stars, swimming in the dark and had a good night sleep in our beach fales. Our favorite place is called: Fao Fao Beach Fales! And in the day time just driving around ...

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The Samoan way of life ✿
The Samoan way of life ✿

Final Painting Mural at Cen Cinai, San Roque!   (published in Costa Rica)

February 13, 2013 by   Comments(0)

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Final Painting Mural at Cen Cinai, San Roque!
Final Painting Mural at Cen Cinai, San Roque!

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