This October (2013) I will travel to Cochabamba, Bolivia, where I will spend one year volunteering with NiÃ±os con Valor (NCV), a Bolivian-born organization that works to create a new cycle of hope for neglected children of Bolivia. This is an exciting opportunity for me because it combines three things I am passionate about: children, health, and environmental sustainability. As a year-long volunteer, hopefully I will have a huge impact on the lives of dozens of kids. I am asking for your help to make this dream possible.
Why Bolivia and why NCV?
I first dreamed of going to Bolivia in elementary school when I saw a beautiful picture of the floating islands of Lake Titicacca in my geography book. As one of the poorest countries in South America, Bolivia is struggling to provide adequate health care and education to its people, and confronting environmental issues related to intense resource development. My Earth Systems degree at Stanford University has shaped my holistic view of ecosystems as well as human health. I believe that one's environmental and cultural contexts are inseparable from their well-being. NCV's approach is unique in that it considers the physical, mental, emotional, psychological, social, educational and spiritual needs of each individual, and in its desire to integrate all children regardless of history, health status, gender, or special physical and mental needs.
A bit more detail on what I will do with NCV and how I could use your support
NCV works with a group most at risk: children/adolescents with special health needs (HIV, lung problems, and health problems) whose families do not have the resources to care for them. Volunteering with NCV for an entire year"”in its home for girls, home for boys, and daycare center"”will allow me to become a stable mentor for the children and part of the community. A few of the things I will do every day include helping meet the kids' medical and overall health needs, tutoring them while they do their homework, and supporting them as they figure out who they want to be and what they want to do when they grow up. I will also be involved in coordinating projects that respond to immediate needs of the community, which may include outreach to nearby rural communities that lack health care access, support for other children's homes, creating community medicinal gardens, and planning for an environmentally sustainable and healthy future. Your support will help me help some of Cochabamba's most needy children.
Any donations"”no matter how small"”would be HUGELY appreciated and will be used to fund my air-travel and living expenses for a year. To make a donation, you can click on the Donate button on this page (it's a secure fundraising site); you can also find information about where to send a check. I have created a blog to share my experiences in Bolivia that you can follow come September [http://georgiainbolivia.wordpress.com]. And if you have any questions about NCV or what I will be doing in Bolivia, feel free to email me at [email redacted]!