SERVE is a volunteer service for young people that offers to meet their neighbor from far way, to open up to each other, and to learn from each other. You have the chance to give God and people your time, your strength, and your creativity.
EBM INTERNATIONAL is working with “Hoffnung International e.V.” to offer a program for people to do a developmental voluntary service for 6 to 12 months. They can work either with children and youth, or in IT, or in the medical field. Volunteers between the ages of 18 and 28 can apply for financial support within the “weltwärts” program.
The countries of assignment for volunteers in Africa are South Africa (English) and Malawi (English) at the moment. In Latin America we offer places in Argentina (Spanish). Even India (English) is a choice.
We always check country of assignment and the time available as well as language skills of the applicant (we require basic language skills of the national language).
Living in a foreign place with a different culture, a different language, and different concepts requires psychological resilience, sociability, and certain physical conditions that are necessary for this work that is sometimes aggravated by climatic circumstances. We expect our volunteers to adapt to cultural and ethical factors on site.
It is a challenge to cope in a different country and in a different culture. At the beginning you have to get used to a lot of new things like language, lifestyle and values, customs and foods, noises and smells. These kind of changes often cause some kind of culture shock. This is one of the examples and topics we discuss in our 2 week preparation class.
Some look back at their time as a volunteer at the evaluation class and say:
“My time in Cameroon was the most valuable, helpful, instructive, challenging, and colorful time of my life.”
“My time in Mozambique was eating mangos and being free, doubting and suffering, happiness, adventure, everyday life and low point at the same time.”
“My time in Malawi was neither the best nor nicest time in my life, but maybe it was the most important time.”
“I was able to experience relationships without facebook and whatsapp.”
“In Mozambique I was able to experience so much more than what the media and other sources are often trying to tell us.”
“I was strongly affected by seeing this hopelessness and I often felt quite helpless.”
“The biggest challenge for me was the feeling of loneliness.”
“At first I thought that the voluntary service would change my life completely.”