Volunteering is rewarding, life changing, and eye opening!
While here, some of the SHARE High School Exchange Students spend some of their time volunteering. They are involved in helping the local communities, schools, and churches. Whether it is helping the elderly, making quilts for other countries, or doing service projects with the church groups; so many of our students are giving back to a community that is only theirs for a short time. These international kids adopt their local community as their own; it is their HOME for 5-10 months. Even though they are here for a limited time, some of them have given so much to pay it forward. With great attitudes and caring hearts, these kids brighten the lives of many people they meet. Here are some of their stories:
- One of our students joined the Help-the-Homeless-Club. He helped by planting a garden with potatoes, tomatoes, carrots, and onions to give to the shelter to feed the hungry.
- One of our sweet girls participated in a “Smile Campaign.” She went to local stores and handed out compliment cards, just to make people smile.
- Another one of our girls spent a lot of her time teaching the kids in her neighborhood how to draw.
- Laura, from Spain, spent a day at the Developmental Center to participate in a “Wheelchair Dance,” dancing with people with special needs who use wheelchairs.
- Some of our students spent time helping others learn about their language and culture, including becoming a teacher's aide for the language teacher that teaches their native language, and volunteering as a Peer Tutor.
“My host mom is an elementary-school-teacher, throughout the year, I've helped her out at her school and worked with the kids in her class. I even created a Powerpoint to present and show Germany and presented it in front of all the 3rd Graders.” - Haokun from Germany
Around the holidays a lot of the kids participated in some sort of “Sub for Santa,” delivering gifts to families in need, and buying, decorating, and delivering Christmas trees to families that did not have one.
“During Christmas I participated in "Vikings Gift." We collected money for 5 nights and with that money we bought presents for kids where their parents couldn't afford presents. Every kid made a list with what they wanted and every volunteer had one or two kids where they had to buy present for. The Friday before Christmas break we went to their school and brought the presents! It was amazing to see how they reacted!” - Frederique from the Netherlands
Volunteering is a vital part of the SHARE! Program. Even our host families are volunteers. And, it is because of these volunteers that these exchange students get to participate in these wonderful experiences.
THANK YOU to all the students and host families that have volunteered!!!