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Flavin's Fund

by Penny Louise Flavin

Supporting: Volunteer Service for Children Worldwide for Global Volunteers



In 2019, I knew I was going to retire and I knew I wanted to travel. I wondered what opportunities were available, and where I could volunteer as well as experience other cultures. I found Global Volunteers through an internet search. The organization had a positive reputation of giving back. The financial statements aligned with my passions and values. It surprised me to find its headquarters were right here in St. Paul, Minnesota. I read that Global Volunteers was an international charity focusing on international development and relief services. Reviews gave the organization 100% for accountability and transparency. I was intrigued.

Once I retired in 2019, I was volunteering and traveling both domestically and internationally during eight months of the year. I served in Peru with Global Volunteers in 2019 and had an incredible experience. When quarantines were lifted and travel opened up, I was ready to experience being out in the world again. I chose Poland as my first service program this year because it was on the list of countries Global Volunteers mentioned that was opening for international travel. It fit in to my schedule. My personal interest in Central Europe would be satisfied through this trip. Upon researching, I found out I would be teaching English. The students were described as eager and engaged. The promise of experiencing Poland’s extraordinary history intrigued me. I read frequently and have read of Poland’s history and the resilience of the people.

The countries we can now volunteer in are so hungry for volunteers to return. It lifts a burden off their shoulders, also. Two people lifting up another is easier than one lifting one. I believe volunteering before or after the world lockdown is vastly important for all involved. The importance of volunteering abroad after the pandemic goes both ways: I am expanding my knowledge and experiencing another culture.

Global Volunteers' mission is to connect people worldwide to wage peace and promote justice through service. Our goal is to sustain the well-being of the world’s children and their communities, so they can realize the full promise of their human potential.  Each Global Volunteer plays a significant role in positively impacting the people they serve and the communities they visit

Working on teams of up to 20 individuals, volunteers participate in one-to-three-week service opportunities where they create, nurture and sustain the well-being of the world’s children and their families.  Volunteers are welcomed into homes, classrooms, clinics, community centers, hospitals, orphanages, childcare centers, libraries, government offices, farm fields and more on exceptional international service-learning programs providing essential services of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.  Volunteers work with and learn from and about local people who are making real change in their communities to help children grow and thrive. .

By supporting volunteers' efforts, you contribute directly to the future success of children in partner communities. Your generous donation to your chosen volunteer ensures that these services continue year-round.  Thank you for making this investment in the future of our world - our children!

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