Volunteering in South Africa – Caring for Orphans in St. Lucia

Posted by: Gabriella

I always wanted to help people and children around the world, to contribute in their lives, and make a difference. Volunteering in South Africa was my perfect opportunity. I entered into the world of the Zulu Tribe. I learned their language so I could communicate with the villagers and the children in their native tongue, and I learned a bit about their customs.

Even though the volunteer houses were in the city, I was constantly surrounded by wildlife. Monkeys ran around the streets like stray cats in Israel* and I ran into a few hippos roaming the streets of St. Lucia as a few other volunteers and I made our way back to our accommodation. I helped the community by building a vegetable garden, fixing fences around schools, playing with kids in after school clubs, and teaching them how to read books in English.

Every morning I went to Doukou Doukou Cre’ch. There, a group of volunteers and I taught children from the ages of 2-7 years old English. We played, sang, and danced with the kids while teaching them English with creative games that my group came up with. The kids were incredible. Their joy for life and their will to learn filled me with so much happiness. I wanted to take all those kids and bring them back home with me.

During one of our afternoon activities, another volunteer and I taught adults about HIV/AID awareness with the help of one of the local women that work with community projects. At the end of the HIV/AID course, the adult participants needed to take a test, going through everything they had learned. They all passed, and I was so proud of them, not only for passing, but for showing up to the classes. They wanted to learn and I was more than happy to help and teach them.

While on the Orphan Day Care in St. Lucia project, we were also offered fun activities for our days off such as horseback riding in the bush and beach, sky diving, shark diving, elephant interaction, and a game drive in the safari. I fell in love with the country, the land, the people, the culture, and the language. I learned a lot about myself, about the volunteers, people, and children I worked with. I will never forget the incredible time and 19th birthday I had in St. Lucia. This volunteering experience changed me for the better, and I can’t recommend it enough.