GCF Volunteers provide essential support to staff in addressing the complex issues of caring for orphaned and vulnerable children, as well as children with Special Needs, and assisting children to develop to their full potential, in a safe and secure environment. As a team member, your role will be to provide individual attention, to play, to love and to give hope to children.
If your mission is to serve the organisation and its children in care, the International Volunteer program offers the opportunity for a life-changing experience. The 6 to 12-month volunteer program at Give a Child a Family provides young adults to learn more about the South African culture and the challenges we face, and to actively work with our local staff in different departments. A full orientation program commences when you arrive.
Volunteers meet other young people and ample time is available to explore what the local area and South Africa has to offer.
An important aspect of the program is that Volunteers become Goodwill Ambassadors on their departure with a certificate allowing them to speak about the GCF program and assisting with raising funds for the organisation.
For more information, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org
HERE ARE SOME QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS ABOUT BEING AN INTERNATIONAL VOLUNTEER, FROM PREVIOUS VOLUNTEERS THAT HAVE WORKED AT GCF OVER THE YEARS.
It can be pretty daunting, leaving the familiar for the unfamiliar, especially if you are travelling alone.
At GCF it comes naturally to us to make you feel welcome. We nurture an atmosphere of family where we share joy and love. We value people and our core value for volunteers is that, during their stay they are enriched and when they leave, life has new meaning.
“It was good. It felt as home from the first day.”
“I felt a very warm welcome from everybody.”
“It couldn’t be better.”
In my country there are so much focus on ourselves, all the time. You always think about your own fulfilment and your own interest, and since I’m raised in that environment, it was tough sometimes because at GCF, you had to think about the needs of others before you thought about yourself.
It took time to adjust. But one of the reasons I came to GCF was to get away from the self-centred life I was living back home and come to serve other people instead. The joy and the fulfilment I felt in my soul by doing that was so much greater than anything I have done for myself back home.
That is something I want to continue to do – serving other people wherever I go. It is a win-win situation. I feel better about myself when I’m helping others, and the people I’m helping become happy! And of course, I am so much more thankful of the things I have in my life when I have seen with my own eyes how poor a lot of people on this planet are.
There are so many people that are suffering every day - poverty and diseases. I feel that I don’t have the right to complain about anything in my life anymore.
A moment that was really special to me was when a new child arrived at GCF. She looked at all the new faces with fear in her eyes. I wondered what she had been through, what she had seen and what she had experienced before she came here.
She was screaming and was so scared and tense. And then I picked her up in my arms, held her as close as I could, in the most loving way I could. She stopped crying. I sang a song, quietly, in her ear and after a little while she fell asleep on my chest to my heartbeats…
There’s no way I could explain that feeling. That a child, a lonely child that has been abandoned, could find rest and feel secure in my arms. That I could have that impact on another human being. That was an amazing moment for me.
A little bit hard in the beginning before you got to know the people and started to understand their culture. In the beginning, I took everything very personally.
Their body language and their “tone”, attitude when they spoke to me. But after a while I understood that we are very different, and raised in very different ways, so I learned not to take it personally and embrace the experience.
“Volunteers are not there to do what you do not want to do. They are there to help you do what needs to be done.”
You will be pleasantly surprised at your surroundings. The volunteer house is on the GCF property, but separate from any other sleeping quarters.
The house is fully equipped and can accommodate around 10 people. Breakfast is self-service but lunch and supper are prepared by the kitchen staff.
Life in the volunteer house always leaves room for growth and development, and is the birthplace of lifelong friendships.
Your working schedule will be 7 hours a day, changing weekly from morning shift to afternoon shift. The other part of the day will be free time.
Alternate weekends include half a day on Saturday and Sunday morning, as well as standby duty. Site seeing is endless. From Nature and Game Reserves to the Wild 5 Extreme Adventures in Oribi Gorge which includes the highest swing in the world.
Further travelling can include the famous Drakensberg and the beautiful Garden Route to the world famous city called Cape Town.