It’s always important for our volunteers to be aware of the commitment they’re making when becoming a part of the FIMRC family. Our mission statement includes three pillars: Access, Education, and Participation. We love that our volunteers embrace all three pillars throughout their time with FIMRC, and become members of the communities at our project sites. These are some questions one of our interns, Amy Vanderstoep, asked herself before deciding that FIMRC was the organization for her:
Why do you want to volunteer?
- Do you have a strong desire to interact with marginalized or underserved groups? - Did you have an experience in your life that has encouraged you to give back to others?
- Do you have friends who have had positive volunteering experiences?
- Have you had past volunteer experiences that you have enjoyed?
Volunteering is a key part of the participation pillar for FIMRC’s mission. Without our volunteers, we wouldn’t be able to have such a large impact on the communities in which we operate. Volunteering is a great way to learn about what’s going on in the world, and how you as one person can help change it for the better.
Why do you want to volunteer abroad?
- Have you had really great experiences in other countries?
- Have you studied another language that you want to try out?
- Do you want to get to know a culture different from you own?
- Have you already volunteered abroad and want to gain another similar (or different) experience?
If you’d like to push yourself, volunteer abroad. You not only learn about the world as you travel, but you learn infinitely more about yourself. It is amazing how much our volunteers grow after even one week with FIMRC at one of our project sites!
How you will be going on this trip?
- Are you traveling with a church, school, or other group from the United States?
- Are you visiting someone you know living in another country?
- Have you found an international organization that you will travel with?
If you are looking to travel with an organization you don’t know directly- DO RESEARCH! It’s so important to understand the foundational mission of your trip because it can greatly impact your activities and what you learn while traveling. Find an organization that matches your goals and expectations, and perhaps will even push past them!
Is the organization integrated into the community?
- Is community integration a part of the mission statement?
- Do the projects appear to have been created with the needs of the communities in mind?
- Have you read any testimonials from past volunteers?
- Did they feel connected to the community?
Our communities are at the heart of not only why we do what we do, but also how we do it. They help us just as much as we help them, and support us not only by providing homestay experiences and establishing knowledge of the area’s needs, but also by keeping FIMRC running! Our project sites employ mainly community members, and we believe that it is only through integrating with the community that you can really start to make and see a difference.
Does the organization have a history of success?
- Have you read success stories on their website?
- Is the organization mentioned on any external sources that recognize it as a successful organization?
FIMRC has been a well-respected organization in the non-profit sector since inception. Not only are we well-respected there, but we are also well-respected in our communities! There are many who will travel quite a distance to be seen at our Ugandan Clinic, and volunteers return year after year to volunteer with FIMRC. We stick to what we know, which is medical aid, and we’re proud of what we do!
So as you consider an international volunteer experience, consider FIMRC!! We hope it’s the right choice for you!