Volunteerday 2009

December 5th is the international day of the volunteers. Minadores de Sueños very much appreciate the work of the national and international volunteers, because they make the project happen. Without their daily work we would never achieve the same as we can achieve with them. The volunteers are a wonderful gift. Therefore we wanted to listen to Laure, our actual volunteer from France, about her motivation and experience.

laure en las tareas dirigidas

Laure Bailly, 26 years old
My motivations to do volunteer work are probably the same as most people’s; wanting to help, to contribute to make the world a little better and hopefully to make myself a little better as an individual. I do believe that I am priviledged to have been born in the conditions that are mine, and it seems fair to me to give some of my time and energy to people less priviledged. I also thought this would be good for my career. I am a teacher and  I have spent the last three years working in a school where children came from a very well-to-do background. I wanted to experience and confront myself to a completely different, harsher reality. I chose to work at Minadores de Sueños because I thought I was qualified for this kind of job, and the foundation looked really serious to me. My main tasks are to help children with homework, to organise games and to teach English. I am thoroughly enjoying my exerience at the foundation and I think I am also greatly benefiting from it. The children are absolutely wonderful. They are very willing to please. They are greatful for what you do for them and the attention you give them. They get very attached to you and you get very attached to them. Working at Minadores de Sueños, I feel needed and appreciated. Also, the people who work at the foundation are very conscientious and they are good pedagogues. They care a lot about the children and are always ready to give them support, in any aspect of their life and development. Obviously, there are also some challenges in this work. For various economical and social reasons, lots of these children are completely neglected by their family. It is heart breaking to hear some of their personal stories and to see how they crave for any mark of attention and any kind of recognition. Moreover, some of the children who come to the foundation have serious learning difficulties, and they are the children volunteers mostly work with. It takes a lot of patience and good-will to work with these children. Added to that, many children come to us not understanding their work at all because it has not been explained to them properly, or because they have not done the necessary preparation work in class to be able to complete it. As a result, you often have several children needing your help at once, which does feel very overwhelming at times. In my opinion, the foundation could do with a few more workers or volunteers because so many of the children would benefit from full attention and constant support. As a whole, it is a very positive experience that has taught me a lot about children, pedagogy, and life in general.