Tomorrow I will be boarding a plane to travel half way around the world to volunteer at an orphanage near Arusha, Tanzania. This journey started several months ago when my good friend Katie Nord said that she wanted to go back to the the orphanage in Tanzania where she has volunteered at several times, to check up on it. From the moment she told my brother and I that she would be doing this, a seed was planted in the back of our minds and we began to think of the new places to explore and amazing adventures to be had. Stephen was a little quicker to latch on to this idea and he booked his ticket right away with Katie. I on the other hand, was having a much more difficult time deciding if this was what I really wanted to do. But as days and weeks went by the stars started to align for me and my adventurous spirit told me I would be crazy if I didn't go.
Stephen and Katie booked their tickets several months in advance of me so they arrived at the orphanage today and will hopefully remember to pick me up at the airport on Monday morning when I arrive. Once we are all in Tanzania, we will be joined by several other volunteers from Canada and will all be volunteering at Sunrise of Life doing various projects and spending time with the street kids there. (To find out more information on the nonprofit we will be volunteering with please visit www.sunriseoflife.com. While we are in Tanzania we are also going to be doing many touristy things and we will be attempting to climb mount Kilimanjaro, seeing the animals of Africa on a safari, and laying in the sun on the pristine beaches of Zanzibar. After about five weeks of volunteering at Sunrise of Life Katie, Stephen and I will be taking a couple of weeks explore Zambia, Namibia, and South Africa.
I hope to be posting stories of all of our adventures along the way at least on a weekly basis maybe more, maybe less depending on where we are and the internet access available to us. I will try to post on Facebook if I have posted a new entry but feel free to check in every couple of days to see if anything has been added.
Hope to be talking to you from the southern hemisphere very soon!
Here is a little more information on Sunrise of Life:
Sunrise of Life is an international charitable organization with nonprofits in Minneapolis, Minnesota and Alberta, Canada, dedicated to helping street children create sustainable futures. The organization is able to do this through several different programs. The first program is the Drop-in Centre, which provides street children with overnight shelter and initial programs for those who desire to lead a better life off of the streets. The second stage in the program is the Residential Centre, and it serves children who have clearly demonstrated at the Drop-In Centre that they have made a commitment to making a better future for themselves and gives the children a place to stay if they cannot return to their home village. The kids who are at the orphanage are anywhere from 6-19 years of age and will be going to school with support needed to achieve their educational and/or vocational dreams. The third stage of the program is the Transition Home. This is for youth who have been through the Residential Centre and displayed a positive attitude, have finished secondary school and will be going on to further education.
To find out more information or to see pictures of the children we will be spending our time with please visit the website at www.sunriseoflife.com