Late Dr. Abdul Kalam once said “You have to dream before your dream comes true”.
In my story, my dream of traveling to Germany has finally become a true story through my
“volunteering program”. What is volunteering? Who can be a volunteer? Volunteering is work for
an organization without any financial cause. There are no professional courses required (Only a
heart to serve people is what is needed).
Hello everyone! I’m Sowmiya Purushothaman. I’m currently working as a volunteer under the
Weltwaerts program as an Educational Assistant in a KITA(kindergarten) in Germany(Berlin).
As everyone will say, there will be a turning point in everybody’s life. Yeah, here is mine!!! It
has given me the opportunity to experience different modes of transport, experiencing new weather,
food, culture, clothing and new routines etc.., for the first time.
One of the best decisions that I made was to work for this program. It is a refreshing
experience working with and for toddlers. Every day is a new journey, where I could bring
back my inner child. Cherry on top was the working culture here in Germany. I was really
fascinated by its inclusivity.
When I heard the term “Teacher” I can recollect the two important words “Strict and Fear” but as
a teacher here I found that to be friendly and kindly mentoring the children. As an Educational
Assistant, I work with children in different age groups by providing them with proper guidance in
terms of education, sports(indoor and outdoor), day care etc. But mostly importantly giving the
children the best moral values of life.
When I was informed about this opportunity, Many of my close circle eventually bombard me
with a lot of questions “How will you survive alone?” “It’s better to marry and go?” “You don’t know
the language?” “How are you gonna cope up with the weather?” which made me unmotivated
and caused me to doubt myself. I didn’t feel undetermined but it made me strong and I had
an urge to try volunteering in a foreign country and to come out of my comfort zone. Though I had an
adapting curve with some difficulty, it was worthwhile now to enjoy these small moments and
memories in life.
I personally believe that “You’ve to face challenges and sacrifices to gain good experiences”.
Volunteering gave me self confidence, being independent, to be goal oriented, to be self valued
and self determined as part of my experience. Thank you so much @fslindia for giving me this
opportunity to explore and to experience this new path of life.
By Sowmiya Purushothaman (Outbound Volunteer, FSL – IJGD)