Who is GIVE?
I had always dreamed of going on a volunteer trip when I was younger, but none of my dreams came close to the experience I had this past summer with GIVE. When I first signed up for a trip, I had no idea what to expect. GIVE’s website said they wanted “to inspire growth, empower the marginalized, and encourage sustainable change worldwide.” At the time, though, that phrase just looked like a bunch of words on a website to me. I hadn’t lived it, so I couldn’t understand it.
Now that I have been privileged enough to have gone to Nicaragua with GIVE, I can say with one-hundred percent certainty that GIVE is more than just another organization. Those words are more than just another sentence on just another webpage. GIVE does the impossible: they make work fun. They make having blisters, sore and achy muscles, and an uneven tan… cool. Knowing that you are making a huge difference in a community is indescribable. Sharing a smile with a kid you know will be attending the school you’re building is the most satisfying feeling. GIVE does an amazing job of making you not feel like you are out of your comfort zone, even though you are in a third world country with no technology. They make you feel like you are on a trip with your family and the idea of being homesick is the furthest thing from your mind. They feed you food you will actually enjoy, rather than food you’ll simply eat because you are hungry. They have inspirational leaders working with you, rather than telling you what to do. Everyone works towards a common goal, together.
From the second you sign up for a trip to the second you return home, GIVE makes you feel supported. They are always a phone call away and, if you email, they get back to you within a few days. Any fears you might have about leaving the country, GIVE does a very good job of eliminating. They provide you with a packing list and mock itinerary, so that you have an idea of what your days will consist of and what type of clothing you should be packing.
So, who is GIVE? Sure, they are exactly what they say on their website, but they are also so much more than that. GIVE is a family - past and future volunteers included. GIVE is a lifestyle. GIVE is a movement. GIVE is the future.