Six weeks volunteering in Morocco: Hannah's story
After six weeks volunteering with Cross-Cultural Solutions in Morocco, CCS volunteer Hannah had learned so much about herself and about the world around her. Read this excerpt from Hannah's blog to find out what she learned at each of her three volunteer assignments.
At the school for street children, I would have to say the biggest thing I learned was patience. Or maybe not so much patience, but the fact that I have lots of it! I was surprised at how well I handled so many little kids. This placement completely changed my opinion of kids. Maybe it was just because I loved those little ones so much, but it brought out patience from places I didn’t know existed. This placement actually impacted me so much that I think I want to teach early elementary now! Those kids taught me a lot in just a month, and I’m so thankful for my time with them.
I think the most important thing I learned through teaching at the women's empowerment foundation was the importance of good communication. Teaching the intermediate class might have been the hardest group to teach because I was expected to explain to my students words that were difficult by using a vocabulary that they understood. Sometimes the language barrier took over and I had to consult a dictionary, but I always tried to use my own words, gestures, drawings, and motions to get a point across. One of the hardest words I had to explain was “about.” Yeah, good luck with that one. The way I communicated with my students was essential to their learning.
I learned so many things during my six days at the orphanage, but the one that will probably stick with me most is simply the importance of being grateful. It’s so easy to take things for granted when you don’t see people who may be less fortunate. I found myself realizing how lucky I am to be able to wash my own hair or put my own shoes on my feet or feed myself. The kids at the orphanage needed help with all those kinds of things, and they were still so happy (most of the time). I get so caught up in what shampoo is best or what shoes are in style, when I really should just be thankful for all the abilities with which I’ve been blessed.