This summer I volunteered with Kumon in Okinawa, Japan. Kumon is a place where students come to study math, humanities, and English. I was a teacher over the course of three weeks, and I worked with elementary school students on their English. I read books to them, and I also went through vocabulary flashcards with them. In addition, I graded student’s math worksheets. It was rewarding to see the children’s faces light up when they got a question correct or comprehended a part of the book. I hope to use my knowledge to teach others again in the future.
This summer I went to camp at Sail Caribbean in the British Virgin Islands. I was lucky enough to see, touch, and tag green turtles multiple times. Tagging turtles keeps track of their population and their migrations. After a hurricane in the BVI they were worried the population would decrease, but the tags from before the storm showed that thankfully the storm did not have a huge effect on the population. I also cleaned 3 beaches, where we picked up trash and plastic. We also hosted an event with another organization that brought together a local community with water sports and beach games. My boat organized and worked with kids there.
I served as a teacher assistant/volunteer at vacation bible school. I helped build and set up props for plays and worked with kids between the ages of 4 and 9. I also helped with numerous other things like packing up at the end of camp.
I served as a volunteer ticket salesperson and hostess for Tapestry of a Town, a WHP fundraiser. WHP partners with Habitat for Humanity to build houses all around Westerville (Ohio). The proceeds raised during Tapestry of a Town – a historical tour of local churches/houses/crypts – were used to buy materials to build one of many houses.
For the 3rd summer, I volunteered with the Coalition for the Homeless. The organization provides housing and food to homeless individuals around NYC, because they believe that nobody should have to sleep on the streets or be hungry. I went on the Thursday night downtown food van from 7pm-10pm all around Manhattan, making 7 stops to give out food to homeless individuals. Some of the stops have over 100 people who come to get food. The experience was amazing because I knew I was making a direct difference in so many people’s lives.
This summer, I volunteered with the Coalition for the Homeless. I went on the thursday night downtown food van which stops at 7 places between 7 and 10 at night. At the stops, we pass out soup, bread, milk and oranges to people in need of food. Working with the Coalition was very rewarding, as I enjoyed making connections with folks I have met before and meeting new people who were so grateful for the food they received. Homelessness and poverty is such a big issue in NYC, and so many people have nothing to eat, and the Coalition does an awesome job of providing food to New Yorkers who need it every day and night, 365 days a year. It was my third summer working with the Coalition, and I hope to keep volunteering there in the future.