Josh Teo, Vietnam Work camp

posted in: Nairana, Volunteer Testimonies | 0

Nairana is a study centre established in 1994, holds activities for young men in Pennant Hills. Nairana has been running work camps to the Aboriginal communities in Australia and Pacific countries since 2010 and from 2014, in partnership with Reledev. Work camps provide young Australian men with the opportunity to get involved in poverty alleviation activities like school refurbishments, building toilet blocks and teaching sanitation.

From December 28th 2015 to January 14th 2016 I had the privilege of attending a work camp to Vietnam organised by Nairana Study Centre. I found out about this project through a local Christian youth group and immediately knew that I wanted to get on board. There were many aspects that were pivotal in me making this decision. Firstly, I am sold on exploring and discovering different cultures and ways of life. Secondly I knew that this project would enable me to do so while at the same time allowing me to learn more about myself in another environment that was outside my comfort zone. Collectively our group worked in a few different regions of Vietnam where we did various types of community work from cleaning and painting, to the construction of toilet blocks and basic houses. Personally I was involved in building a small brick house that was for a family who had recently lost a father and husband. I found the project very enlightening and a great learning curve. As I am already inclined to physical work and building, I took great interest in the way that a diverse group of people with different skill sets and coming from various walks of life all came together to achieve a common goal. For me, there were two major aspects that were equally important and these were: building a sense of solidarity with a less fortunate community and a journey of self-discovery that would only have been possible in a place that pushed me out of my comfort zone. The journey of self-discovery that I made revolved around a sense of new found gratitude for the things in my life that I often take for granted such as material things, but more importantly a heightened appreciation of the people close to me and how to cherish them and make time for them. Overall I have such fond memories of this work camp and it was certainly one of those things that fostered memories, friendships and learning opportunities which money simply can’t buy!

– Josh Teo, Nairana Work camp volunteer 2016

We need your support as so many others can benefit from Reledev’s projects. You can also volunteer overseas like Josh on a work camp locally or overeseas. You can help by donating to the Reledev cause. A little goes a long way. 

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