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I didn’t mind the heat, I was just happy to be out. However, it did slow the rate of the progress at the construction site.
I’ll admit that construction houses was perhaps not in my job description. As I sat there with my back against a shrub I poured a half bottle of water over my head. A grin crossed my face, not because I felt much more refreshed, but because I had been truly happy. I recognized a gentle breeze which suddenly swept across the landscape and took my own thoughts withit. My mind started to wonder. How can I get here?
Wasn’t there something more alive than routine and monotony? At times I’d often wonder if a lot of people were really getting up at the morning motivated by the job that they were doing and how their lives were unfolding. I needed a switch. I desired to eventually become consciously involved in something positive which could provide me with a sense of purpose. Does that even exist, and if yes where can I sign up? Perhaps it’s easier said than done. However, I finally chose and started to see this fantasy when I traveled to Costa Rica in a whim and found myself volunteering with Habitat for Humanity International. Can one person really transform the whole world? I desired to find out.
Habitat for Humanity International is a nonprofit, ecumenical Christian organization dedicated to eliminating substandard housing and homelessness worldwide and making adequate, affordable shelter a matter of conscience and activity. Habitat simply started a brand new International Volunteer Program (IVP) for long term volunteers and that I was the initial to go through the program. My official name was that the Volunteer Coordinator for Latin America & the Caribbean. I believed this is an enormous opportunity since the organization was built and existed the support of volunteers. Starting out I was somewhat on edge, in the time I found my groove over the Habitat framework. It was unbelievable – that I was actually enjoying office job. I took part in the evolution of materials like a volunteer manual, meeting guides, and test forms. I caused a task force for the continuous improvement of this IVP program. I administered an onsite volunteer training regime at El Salvador. Yet the best part about my job was really getting to work along side other volunteers, those who were there not because that they had to be but have there been only because they wished to become.
So far as the volunteers were concerned, my role was to coordinate home and coming logistics, administer orientations, and encourage them during their stay. There is this type of charm between the volunteers I’d take it a step farther and plan weekend trips and after-work outings. We finished up not just altering the lifestyles of others, however, changing the lifestyles of one another. Working together with Habitat gave me the confidence to feel that I can accomplish virtually any endeavor, but more importantly it gave me a genuine sense of pride in being ready to work hard at work worth doing.
Normally as I could I’d break out from the workplace and take volunteers build trips to Habitat construction sights during Costa Rica. It was heartwarming to see firsthand the culmination of one’s job. Out at the sight we would work together with the benefitting Habitat family that was consistently very receptive, helpful, and appreciative of the help. The spectacle was a fantastic amalgamation of civilizations, economic backgrounds, and beliefs. The common bond which tied us together was the easy notion of developing a home. Just seeing everybody else working, laughing, grinning, and sharing created an atmosphere therefore rich with emotion that it made me reconsider how I defined wealth. The home was emblematic of more than just a place of dwelling. It symbolized a unity, a coming together, and an inherent understanding of equality that we’ll carry with us for the rest of our lives. As cliché as it may sound, it was true. We’re not only building homes, we were building lives.
Internationally or conflict resolution or human rights, the environment – it’s disheartening to think there are so many methods to get involved and give back to the international community. It isn’t important where you start to get started making positive contributions equally for as long as you make your decision to actually start somewhere. Fundamentally, this is one of the toughest decisions to create. Can I eradicate poverty housing? Maybe not really close. Did I succeed? Absolutely! The serenity of my experience taught me that I cannot do away with poverty housing, which directed me into the answer I was searching for. Perhaps 1 man can’t change the world, but the world can definitely change for a single individual. And it has this domino effect, that if spread across the globe we can, collectively, achieve the unimaginable and make a world that reflects the warmth of mankind instead of its own indifference.
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