Many years ago, in a tiny, dusty grocery store in a remote part of Kenya, we read the following memorable words, hand-written on a scrappy piece of paper, pinned to the wall behind the counter;
We encourage visitors and volunteers to visit all the projects that New Dawn Association is involved in. (Volunteers interested in visiting any project, for more information, please get in touch with one of the contacts on the contacts page.) Volunteers are welcome to share their skills, ideas and experience with the orphan children and local community. This is an excellent and mutually enriching way of interacting with a project and a community. Visiting a project can be a very unique experience, allowing one to have a truly authentic insight concerning the day to day life on the ground. Volunteers can help in many different ways while visiting or staying on a project. All ways of helping are eagerly considered, (and unless totally inappropriate,) are enthusiastically embraced.
Volunteers are also encouraged to come with a particular project or goal that they would like to achieve, together with adequate finances for materials etc to complete it.
• Art and craft classes
• Drama workshops / story-telling
• Music/Dance workshops
• Carpentry, masonry, painting, ‘bricolage’ in the Orphanage Homes and within the impoverished
• Various kinds of Teaching- to orphans and local communities etc- for example, on nutrition,
hygiene, Bible studies, etc
A project goal could provide, for example, the funds to finance a specific item, or event- (Ideally this event could take place during a volunteer’s stay, but funds may be left to be used to at a later date, depending on the item/event chosen.)
• A children’s outing
• A medical camp
• A child’s annual school fees
All volunteers are expected to cover their own travelling, insurance and accommodation costs. For those who wish, in many cases, it is possible stay onsite with a project, to gain an in-depth experience and exposure of the local culture.
French volunteer, Julie Dreyer, stayed with a project for 3 months, “Now that I can look back on my stay I can say that this is something I’ll never live again, and it changed everything for me. It was totally unexpected…..I saw real misery, misfortune. I saw how it was to be so poor, to live in the dirt….. Now I can just tell how to go there, to meet the women and children, it changed my life. I feel good. I feel confident, full of hope. I want to give love, to teach people how they can trust in themselves instead of remaining in their narrow world. I’m so thankful. I want to go on helping these poor people, to make people sensitive to their situation.”
“In 3 words : SHARING, CARING, LOVING”
“After working two years in the administrative department of a very large international group I wanted a new direction to feel more useful. I wanted to discover international solidarity, with a view to further study in this area.
So, I left for the first time for the mission field, at the other end of the world for this first humanitarian experience and with New Dawn. My savings allowed me to pay for my ticket and pay for accommodation and food (a budget that of course has nothing to do with a trip to Europe, much more expensive). A big bag full of warm clothes and a little courage, and off I went!
There, I met Pastor Krishna, his family, his ministry and all the children in the many foster homes. I shared my days and my nights with these incredibly kind and generous people.
So, I offered my services for everyday tasks, but it was mostly my administration skills that were put to use. We have undertaken the creation of a new website for the ministry to update and provide better communication on the values and actions of Little Feet Ministries. In addition, I travelled to all corners of Nepal to accompany missionaries to the most remote churches and to take as many photos as possible. I also took a lot of pictures of the kids with whom I had great times of sharing and playing games.
A collect of clothing was also conducted. So, I sorted and cleaned them to be redistributed to the very poor people living in the countryside.
This adventure was a real discovery, eye-opening, as much on the situation of the country and its inhabitants, as on the means and facilities already in place and the work that remains to be done. It was also a rewarding experience on the human level, I had exceptional moments and created beautiful friendships. Two months passed quickly.”
Eva, France, 2018.
@ New Dawn Association 2017