Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Recruiting for next summer!

Hello socios!

I hope this message is finding you all well. For those of you who don't know me, my name is Johanna, I'm from California, and I worked this summer as a support person on the Costa Rica team. This year, along with ten other GL volunteers from Costa Rica, Nicaragua and the US, I am in a new GL leadership program called Global Leaders. (Please see our recent e-newsletter for more info.) In Global Leaders, I am holding the role of Co-Director of GL's School Enrichment Programs. Part of this new job is to coordinate U.S. volunteer recruiting. My experience thus far with Global Learning has been incredible and I'm psyched about getting the word out about GL to potential new volunteers.

Would you be willing to help recruit new volunteers for GL this year? Your promotion and energy are the key to creating a large and diverse applicant pool. Thank you for doing your part!

Recruiting is a rather simple process that is very well supported by GL documents. From emails to professors to a sample 3-minute talk, we have templates. The only thing you need is your enthusiasm for GL and the desire to share this experience with other people. Recruiting is the most important thing we do all year. It forms our teams and it is thanks to these teams that our programs run.

What follows below is an overview of the GL recruiting plan in the U.S. from now until applications are due on February 28, 2010. The timeline is a suggestion, a template of what has worked in the past.

If you are interested in recruiting, which I hope you all are, please send me an email letting me know and I'll keep you informed and send you more detailed information as needed. I encourage you all to take the initiative to be regional recruiting coordinators and lead the effort in your area.

I look forward to working with you all in your recruitment efforts this year!

Johanna Langill
Co-Director of Global Learning School Enrichment Programs (USA)

Recruiting General Timeline

We had our first training for the US directing teams on the East and West Coasts and set concrete goals for making this year's team diverse not only racially, ethnically and socio-economically, but also in the variety of campuses represented.

We are updating the written information we'll use for recruiting in the coming months.
Volunteers across the U.S. will start planning the informational meetings to be held on our campuses in November (finding a space, putting up flyers, getting the word out).
U.S.-based volunteers will be emailed documents (flyers, email templates, written info to distribute, etc) and Power Points to use when recruiting.

Volunteers in the U.S. will email program info and the 09 application to our friends, family, campus clubs, electronic bulletins, and list serves.
We'll continue to organize on our campuses and publicize the open (informational) recruiting meetings to be held this month.
We will hold the informational meetings.
We will contact professors in order to make 3-minute presentations about GL in our classes and at least 5 classes that are not ours.

We'll continue with classroom visits.
We will contact spring professors about visiting their classes at the start of the new semester.

We will send emails to the interested contacts we've collected from our class visits, with GL information attached and a reminder that applications are due in February.
We will plan for class visits in the spring semester.

We will make 3-minute presentations about GL in our classes and at least five classes that are not ours at our college.
We will make class visits on a nearby college in order to increase the diversity of schools that GL volunteers attend.
We will send emails to the interested contacts we've collected from our class visits, with GL information attached and a reminder that applications are due soon.
Applications are due February 28. Selection interviews will be held February 28 to March 18.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

De Grace: Voluntaria en Costa Rica 09

En estas semanas con el grupo de Aprendizaje Global, en Liberia, he tenido la oportunidad de adquirir mayor conocimiento en distintas áreas. Primero que todo, con respecto a la educación, he tenido aprendido acerca de cómo aplicar la enseñanza de una manera diferente, en la cual alumnos y maestros enseñan y aprenden de una manera mutua. Además, la relación entre ambos (maestro-alumno) es más de igualdad, se nivela la posición de estos, para eliminar de cierta forma el paradigma de “Yo soy el maestro y ustedes los alumnos”. Este método da resultados grandes, lo he podido notar con la respuesta de los niños luego de impartir las clases, ellos se sienten muy agradecidos y esperan ansiosos la siguiente visita de equipo; esto es algo que realmente satisface y motiva tanto a los voluntarios a seguir trabajando por los niños, como a los pequeños a continuar aprendiendo.

Por otra parte, la relación con los miembros del grupo es muy agradable, cuando vamos a las escuelas nos levantamos muy de mañana, como a las 6:00 a.m., desayunamos, hacemos la limpieza del lugar y aprovechamos para escuchar música y de esta manera disfrutamos mucho del tiempo juntos. Luego de terminar las lecciones en las los centros educativos, almorzamos, hacemos trabajos individuales, me gustan mucho, ya que es la oportunidad de interactuar aún más con los compañeros, ya sea haciendo compras en el centro de Liberia o trabajando el las lecciones en las residencias que es donde vivimos. También tenemos tiempo personal, en el cual nos relajamos de muchas formas. Además, todos los domingos tenemos la dicha de poder descansar un poco mas, haciendo giras como a la playa, bosque, etc. Esto nos ayuda a comenzar una semana con gran energía. Algo importante es que todos somos como hermanos, nos ayudamos mutuamente y compartimos nuestras vidas en este mes.

En Aprendizaje Global tenemos la gran oportunidad de tener un intercambio de culturas, esto algo que me gusta mucho, he aprendido mucho de cada uno de los compañeros, locales y extranjeros, todos compartimos nuestras experiencias de vida, las cuales siempre son de gran provecho. En esta organización he trabajado duro con le resto de los miembros de grupo, sin embargo la satisfacción de ayudar es inmensamente grande. Cuando entre a GL pensé que me perdería de unas maravillosas vacaciones de verano con mi familia, pero ahora se que estas han sido las mejores vacaciones de mi vida por que he hecho algo productivo, no solo para mi, sino para los demás y por esta razón quiero mantenerme activamente en el equipo por mucho tiempo. Solo puedo decir, gracias a todos.

Grace Gonzalez Valdez
Voluntaria de Aprendizaje Global, Costa Rica 09

From Lily: GL Volunteer in Costa Rica 09

One week left. I write these words with regret because they signal the approaching end to my wonderful experience here in Costa Rica with Global Learning. Coming into the Global Learning program, I did not have many concrete expectations. I think I was mostly worried about my Spanish skills and excited to work with kids. I could have never anticipated how close I would feel to twenty-one incredibly diverse individuals. What has surprised me the most about my experience here in Costa Rica is the sense of camaraderie amongst the volunteers. There are people here that I feel like I have known for years instead of a few weeks. I am already making plans to visit Boston next year to visit with some of the volunteers who attend school there!

Global Learning has given me so much in terms of making new relationships. I am inspired everyday by the passion of my fellow volunteers. Their dedication not only to the GL program, but also to their personal endeavors allows me to feel more confident about my own dreams. Here, I have met university students, teachers, and even former Peace Corps volunteers. Everyone here believes in the importance of service in a global sense, and I am saddened to leave such an empowering and nurturing environment next week.

Now, onto the children. We returned to El Salto today to do a community project centered around recycling and protecting the environment. I was very surprised by the number of kids that showed up. It was amazing how much trash and recyclable goods we collected in such little time! Seeing children I had taught before and having them remember me was a very rewarding experience. I feel especially close to the children at El Salto because we were able to give special classes to them a couple of weeks ago when their school was technically closed. We were also able to attend a cultural festival there yesterday full of excitement, dancing, recitations, and laughter. I was able to share lunch with some very talkative kindergarten students. They cannot wait until next year when they can participate in the lessons.

Tonight was very special because we had an open house for all present and past volunteers. I was able to meet former volunteers like Javier, who was part of the pilot GL team back in 1998, and who continues to be a major force in the program. It was interesting to be part of a melding of two different generations of volunteers. This coming week is going to be full of planning, teaching, and hopefully a lot of laughter. I arrived in Costa alone, but I am leaving with a family.

Lily Fabela
Current GL Volunteer in Costa Rica 2009