Volunteering experiences at home

I am Lilla Végvári; I have been volunteering for the Taita Foundation on the occasion of various events for two years now; among others, I also participated in ’Afrika Expo’. I got acquainted with the foundation’s activities through a colleague of mine, so I instantly grabbed the opportunity and registered with them to be a volunteer.

My interest in Africa had already started during my childhood. I was mainly attracted to the continent’s flora and fauna. I had no problem with watching every single documentary movie that was broadcast. Then later, this interest expanded to include culture and people, as well. Also, during my studies (international studies, history major), I paid particular attention to this region, together with the Near East, and it became more and more obvious to me what a huge price the Western peoples’ wellbeing costs. And that is exactly why I think that we have to act together to let African people thrive in their homeland instead of being forced to commit drastic measures such as leaving it behind. The colorful hustle and bustle of various African-themed events always offers a great opportunity to bring the two worlds closer to one another, and to get acquainted with the foundations and organizations involved with these matters, as well as giving us a chance to meet with the patrons and the people interested. On such occasions, all kinds of people frequent our booth, with all kinds of intentions. Some of them are only looking for a little gift for their family or themselves, some of them arrive with a clear purpose, with similar volunteering experiences in their past, just like us, and they are more than happy to share these experiences with us. One thing is for sure, almost everyone welcomes our enthusiastic accounts on the work of the Taita Foundation, the children’s everyday life and where the donations end up or possibly what they cover. These days are usually very successful. The money gathered here is primarily employed for meals, medical care and education, and of course, amid all the difficulties, on providing a real home and the most beautiful childhood possible for the residents living there.

I would like to spend an extended time in Africa in the near future, by all means – and I have to admit I have some selfish reasons for that... I feel like there is something that one can only experience and learn there. I don’t know what that is yet, but I’ll surely write a few lines about it, as well.