Monday, July 11, 2011

My Unforgettable India

Jorge Fernandez, a 24 year old from Mexico spent 8 weeks volunteering in GVN's India Children's Program.  Volunteers in this program have the opportunity to work with street children and children from slums in daycare centres and schools which have been purposely set-up to help alleviate poverty. There are opportunities to teach English, provide care and basic education for children.

Jorge wrote a very moving final journal piece about his experience volunteering in India, excerpts of which we're proud to share with you today:

"The first of my conclusions is that if you are either a person eager to see and learn about the world and the people living in it or one of those idealists who believes the world can be changed for the better, then you should definitely consider volunteering in India.

And so you might ask: Why India?  Well this might just be my very own, tremendously biased opinion, but I can hardly think of a country in which you will find such impressive cultural vastness, mad/fun craziness, overwhelming contrasts, functional chaos and unbelievable diversity, cultural clash, all in the same place. “India is a land you learn to love as much as you hate sometimes” as my friend Tamara says, is the best way of defining it I heard, and it’s absolutely true, so why not experience such a country?

Secondly, and most important: WHY volunteering? Well…

My most definite answer would be a very Indian “Why not?”. Why not go on about a trip aimed to cultivating our minds and hearts in ways different to what the regular, tourist trips do? Why not help people anywhere in the world? After all, we are all human beings, trying to achieve the happiness and peace we’re all entitled to have. I know for me this is what India taught me and I can’t be any more grateful for finding a home in Jai Jawan Colony 129, a family in my fellow volunteers and a bunch of great, wise teachers in the people I got to come across during my 12 revealing weeks in which, in exchange for a piece of my heart left at Jaipur, I took so much more that will define me and my future.
Every single day was an adventure because we let ourselves enjoy and work with every moment as it came, even the ugly ones. It’s a good reminder of how we can improve our regular, daily lives.

So… Why not?"

If you'd like to find out more about volunteering in India, or to apply online visit