In less than two weeks I will be headed stateside and I’ve been reflecting on my experiences while abroad and the next move with my mini. While I had ruled out Workaways after my first week here I have changed my mind. I allowed that first week to determine my overall feelings about my experience here. I wanted to do a Workaway because I wanted to be more purposeful in our travels and the five hour/day commitment would provide more routine which I thought would help me better manage my time. Instead of finding the positives I was focusing my energy on the negatives. Rather than staying in my feelings I asked the host what else I could do since I wouldn’t be in the classroom.
One of the volunteers had started an initiative to raise money for the school. Alice, the founder of the school, has worked tirelessly, without a salary, to keep the school open. Most Kenyan schools require fees for the students to attend. The area that Alice lives in, and the area where her school is, the families cannot afford school fees. Her school provides free education to those students. Only through donations and volunteers is she able to keep the school open. She provides the salary for two teachers, uniforms for the students, their meals, all the school supplies, and pays the for the school’s utilities. Even when the lights are out they continue holding class for the students. When the common area flooded, school continued. Alice put’s all of her effort and energy into keeping her school open. Not only does she care for each child as if they are her own but she does the same for the people she host in her home.
The school will be reopening in January and she is working on raising the needed funds to continue to school for another year. Donations can be made at:
The Workaway experience does have some benefits. We’ve had other people, besides our host, to interact with. I haven’t had to cook or eat out since I arrived. Instead of trying to find space fillers – trips to tourist spots – I was able to focus on being still. I was finally able to complete the five e-books I had been reading. The project I started a few months ago is halfway complete. I have even been able to start planning our drive across North and South America.
During our free time, we enjoy the lounge chairs on the beach, the bean bag toss or bocce ball games, playing cards, venturing out to neighboring towns and beaches, or simply just watching the waves.
Whatever you are interested in doing back home is likely also possible abroad, so why not try it out?