Many people are keen to go abroad to volunteer. It always sounds like such an amazing opportunity and something that will benefit the people who are being helped as well as the people doing the volunteering. However, for some who have the chance they might wonder just why it is that they should do this wonderful thing. What will they gain from it, and why will it help other people when they arrive at their destination, wherever that might be? There are many different answers to these questions, and here are just some of them.
When you are at home, living your life, doing the things that are expected of you day in and day out, it can be easy to get caught up in it all, and the little things that wouldn’t and shouldn’t be an issue suddenly become hugely important and have a negative impact on you. A comment on social media, the wrong change in a store, being cut up in traffic, and all these other things, however, become absolutely trivial when compared to the lives of other people in other countries who need help.
When you go abroad to volunteer and give your time to help other people, you’ll realize that you’ve been worrying about things that just don’t matter, and when you return, you’ll be a calmer, happier, more present person, and you’ll more easily be able to appreciate what you have.
Look around you, and you’ll see all kinds of gadgets and possessions that you might enjoy, perhaps even love in a way, and that if you suddenly didn’t have them, you would be lost. However, when you really dig down into what these things actually are, for the most part, you’ll find that they were and are things that you want rather than things that you need.
When you volunteer abroad there will be many times when you are faced with people who don’t have enough or only just have what they need to survive. You’ll soon understand that it really makes no difference if you have cool designer clothes or top of the range cookware, or the latest smartphone. These are not essential things. You can more easily strip back your life to just the bare essentials when you are volunteering abroad and take this lesson back home with you too. Of course, you’ll still need to take things with you and use international moving specialists if you’re going for a long time, so you don’t have to take this too far.
When you are thrown in at the deep end, as you will be when you volunteer abroad, you will learn all kinds of new skills that you may never even have thought about before, and you’ll learn them fast because you will have to. You will need to know about project management, negotiation, diplomacy, languages and language development, how to teach, how to build, how to live with nothing, and much more. These are not things that can be taught in a classroom, but really must be lived before they can be learned. Therefore, although you can prepare a little before you go abroad to volunteer, the real learning won’t begin until you actually arrive and need to act.