After arriving at JBFC late at night, the first surprise of the trip came in the morning when I was able to see the extent of the campus in the daylight. It was difficult for me to imagine the 60 acre campus prior to arriving, but even after touring around I still couldn’t believe how wide spread the campus was and how every inch of the land is being used to benefit the children in one capacity or another. The residential home and school are beneficial in obvious ways, but the campus is also full of livestock which can be used as food or sold in local markets, gardens which provide produce for the home and restaurant, and even many new construction projects which all aim at improving the functionality of the campus. Everything is geared toward helping the children.
I was not surprised that the first guests of the season were so eager to help out and start working. They were in a new place, adrenaline pumping, and ready to quickly jump on any task. What did surprise me was that two weeks into their stay, they had the same level of enthusiasm that they did upon their arrival. The work that the guests help with is not always easy nor is it glamorous. Sometimes a lot of physical labor is required and in the Tanzanian sun, basic tasks can become grueling day-long jobs. What has amazed me and continues to amaze me as new volunteers arrive, is their earnest desire to be of assistance in whatever way possible.
Just as every inch on the campus aims at contributing to JBFC’s cause, so too are the volunteers with their spirit, which makes my job of working with the guests that much more enjoyable. It’s wonderful to work with people who really want to help out and who you can tell, are truly passionate about the children of JBFC.
Guest blogger Amanda Harris is JBFC’s Guest Coordinator for Summer 2013. She’s chronicling her first visit JBFC’s campus. For more information about volunteering at JBFC, click here.