Yingfei's Wonderful Experience of Volunteering in Malawi, Africa.

By Yingfei Gao (College for International Co-operation and Development, England)

"Cool, Was it very beautiful? Have you seen many elephants?" Many people ask me these questions as soon as they know that I have been to Africa. I would rather tell people what I've been doing and my thoughts first.

I was working in two different schools in the Child Aid Project. In the morning, I taught pre-school kids, who were around 5 years old. I taught them English songs, games, numbers and the alphabet, etc. In the afternoon, I taught Club children, who came from the local primary school. I taught them general knowledge, and we played drama and sports together. You can't imagine how good they are at performing.

Yingfei Gao taught in Malawi.
© Courtesy: CICD England

The teaching there was very basic. You've got to make your teaching materials yourself. You've got to survive with no materials at all. I had never done teaching before but I found the most important thing is how much you care about them and how much you put into it. From there, I have learnt to make things around me more valuable.

For me, It was wonderful to have this chance to exchange knowledge and ideas with the Malawians. I learnt a lot from what I've seen and the people I was working with.

I dreamt about the kids many times since I came back. Some times, I laugh in my dream because I can see their carefree faces. Some times, I feel the stream flowing over my feet. I can never forget the kids wearing adult clothes, walking around in bare feet, and writing in the sand.

I never thought that Malawi would touch my heart so much. At the beginning, I was a bit frustrated as I couldn't do as much as I wanted. After 6 months, however, I did not feel bad about it anymore. I thought I am just one person, and I am trying my best to make a little change. If everyone cares about a few pairs of little cold feet, I am sure in the future we will be able to see many happy, cosy feet in Africa!

It might sound far away but if you never get it started, how can you say it is only a dream in the sky? Believe me, you can make a difference in a few people's lives if you do it with your willing heart.

Click here to view images from Yingfei's photo album of her time in Malawi

The College for International Co-operation and Development is a school, located near Hull in England, that trains Development Instructors (6 month course) for 6 months work in Africa. Its main work is done in Mozambique, Angola, Malawi and Namibia.

Click here for a comprehensive article on CIDC England


For more details click here to visit their website.

or contact them on:

Phone: (0) 1964 631 884 or (0) 7762 967 387

Part of the CIDC campus, near Hull, England where Development Instructors are prepared
for 6 month programs in Africa.

© Courtesy: CICD England

© One World One People, 10 January 2003
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