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Volunteer Diaries

Finally committed!

Maria Alicia Russell's diary:

It was a long hard, difficult decision. Sitting in front of my boss' desk and telling him that my 25 years at work might come to an end was the hardest thing I've ever done. I have worked since I was 16 years old. I don't know what it's like to be without a job. What was I doing? The look on my boss' face was clearly saying "this is the worst time to be asking for so much time off". I know how the economic climate is, the jobless rate , I am grateful to have a job, and I don't want to throw it all away on a whim, but this decision is no whim.

The Countdown Begins!

Diana Garcia's diary:

So it is officially two weeks until my departure! I have booked my flight, arranged my pick-up, and started doing some shopping in preparation.

This will be my first time traveling to a foreign country and I am definitely both excited and anxious. I am looking forward to the experience of volunteering as well as immersing myself in the native culture. I look forward to meeting my host family and getting to know what their life is like. I am most excited to get my placement in the health care field. I am really hoping that I can go on the health care campaigns.


Iqra Malik's diary:

It is April 18, 2014 and I leave in 11 days!! LET THE DOWNTOWN BEGIN :)

Registration Finalized

Suraya Khan's diary:

April 18, 2014 - registration for the Ramadan Program finalized and contact established with Nadya my program coordinator and after several Facebook communications with other more mature volunteers to Morocco I feel more excited than a little anxious as I now prepare for my venture commencing July 21, 2013! Next step to get airline reservations and other necessary matters underway!

Week 10

Elizabeth Cohen's diary:

On Monday, I did my usual jobs at work, changing the dogs' water and then went in to the kitten room. I emptied the cat litters while the other volunteer cleaned the room. I then sat with my favourite on my knee for a while, a boy aged maybe five months, mostly white with a bit of black. He's my favourite because he's always so happy and purrs so much when you stroke him or pick him up! Although he doesn't like the other cats, and snarls and growls if they come near!

31 Days to Go!

Joanita Muwanga's diary:

I just completed my first exam for school! Although thats a celebration in itself, funny enough immediately after writing my exam I thought about my soon awaiting journey to Africa.

Just like a tun of bricks, although I should probably be asleep seeing as though its 2:45 am here in Singapore, I couldn't wait another second to start my dairy entires.

25 Days!

Natalie Dell's diary:

Well it's down to 25 days before I head off on my trip to Vietnam! I am starting to get pretty excited and don't have much left to organise except for the actual packing of my bag which I'll leave probably until last minute! I am travelling with a friend and it's her first time overseas which makes it much more exciting! I can't wait until I am in the country to experience the culture, the food, the people and everything that makes Vietnam the country it is. This is what I am calling the true start to my gap year and I can't wait!

Week 9

Elizabeth Cohen's diary:

My first full week at the animal shelter! I had already got used to the routine, it didn't take long! Every day we would get there for about 8.30am, change the dogs' waters and give them some pats, then clean out the kitten room including the litter trays, followed by dog walking. If there was time at the end we would spend some time playing with the puppies or kittens. On Monday we also clipped some of the dogs' nails.

Getting Ready

Megan Sheridan's diary:

T-minus 12 days and forecast says lightning and thunder storms.

Not quite the hospital Incan greeting I was expecting but on the bright side I suspect the surrounding scenery to be blossoming in full blow greenage. I've nearly got all my gear huddled together and now just need to fold some clothes into the pile. Checking the IVHQ FB page in attempts to network I realized I should have started reaching out a little earlier. Everyone writing seems to be broadcasting their summer travel plans.

Gearing Up!

Molly Bernosky's diary:

I'm currently on Spring Break, sitting in a coffee shop, and making a to-do list for my upcoming trip to Bali. I just paid the fees, got a copy of my background check on Friday, and looking to make an appointment for needed vaccines. Before the coffee shop, I was with my 97-year-old grandma at her apartment. We talked about a variety of things- the Reds win yesterday, her health, gardening- but she made a point to ask about my trip to Bali. She wanted to know how I planned on fundraising, the primary answer to that being a Kentucky Derby themed party we plan to host in May.


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