Volunteers’ Voices 2/2016: voices of interest groups

Editorial: Inspiring Encounters and Learning Together

What do the people of voluntary workplaces – the staff and the pupils of a school or disabled people of a workshop, for instance – gain from international voluntary work cooperation? The impact is often explored from the perspective of a volunteer. It is pondered, what the volunteer has learned abroad and how the experiences have added to the personal growth of the participant. This magazine aims at bringing forth experiences of the people at voluntary workplaces.

In Maailmanvaihto I have had the pleasure to witness many wonderful encounters and stories of personal growth. The biggest achievements are often small shared moments in the daily life and mutual learning experiences: how the boys of a special education class get inspired to learn English with a Mexican volunteer or a lonely youngster with a challenged background finds a friend to play billiards with out of an Indian volunteer. A volunteer is often the one who has time to play, talk and pay attention, as Ghanaian pupil Maxwell and Kisälli’s Sini and Aleksi tell in their interviews in this magazine.

The volunteer always brings something new for the voluntary workplace: a possibility to develop language skills among the daily tasks and a breeze of the volunteer’s own culture. This broadens the worldview and opens a new window to the world for the people at the workplaces. In the grassroot peace education it is important to offer – for pupils, for instance – an experience that one can get along with a foreigner and enjoy time together even without a shared language. In this way people dare to step over the boundaries of their comfort zones, get to know each other and learn together.

It is often difficult to put into words the benefits and learning experiences international volunteering offers. Often it can provide new insights and wonderful encounters which can inspire a long way further.

Mari Takalo
Programme Coordinator of Maailmanvaihto

In the issue

2 Editorial: Inspiring Encounters and Learning Together
3 Kasvun paikat ja kannustavat kohtaamiset
5 Ajankohtaista
8 Syksyllä 17 vapaaehtoista eri puolille maailmaa Argentiinasta Vietnamiin
9 Kutsu syyskokoukseen
Teema: Sidosryhmien Äänet / Theme: Voices of Interest Groups
— 10 Juksailua ja kielioppia Ghanassa
— 11 Aikaa, oppia ja toveruutta Costa Ricassa
— 14 Kulttuurivaihtoa kangaspuiden lomassa
— 18 Uutta arkea Costa Ricassa
22 On-Arrival training in Antaverkka
34 ICYE Around the World: Vivid Energy in Taiwan
26 Päivä Sofian Kengissä
28 Volunteering at Kainuun Opisto
31 Askel eteenpäin – Työkalupakki ihmisoikeuskasvatukseen
32 Tule mukaan toimintaan!
33 Kielitaitoa väkisinkin
34 Toiminnan lähtökohtia
35 Tapahtumakalenteri

ISSN 2342-2629 (Printed)
ISSN 2342-2637 (Online version)